Electronics > Mechanical & Automation Engineering

Backward stabilization of a Z-axis (with image)

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I'm trying to build a Z-Axis for mounting a camera to it. Overall weight would be around 20-30kg that's needed to be lifted.
Now I'm struggling at a certain point of decision. I have 2 HGR20 steel linear rails with a length of 1200mm. Those I want to attached with M5 screews to a 12mm aluminum 5083 plate. Each 60mm the rail is attached with a screw. On the back of that plate I considered two pieces for stabilization which I would mount with M4x20 countersunk head screws every 60mm or 120mm. I have now two options:
1) placing the stabilization right behind the rail
2) or on the edge of the plate.

my thoughts:
2) is easier to aligne
1) maybe more robust? but it may make the plate/underground more uneaven and so the linear rail?

What would you suggest me? I'm having hard times to decide what's best?
Thanks a lot, Max J



First : how do you proceed to make you U beam that an extruded profile ? or a welded parts in 3 pieces ? you can get a far better stiffness by using a rectangle extruded parts

this type of profile '' rectangle with radius '' exist in 6062 T6 or at least 6000 serie heat treated with is far more stronger than the soft 5083 including for drill an tap


Regarding the load depend where are the rest / support contact and how many you have

Regarding your rails , you need to bed them with epoxy putty as ''devcon putty''  to compensate your rail defect IF you screw hard steel rail on ??? aluminium surface you will generate strain

You shall also use thread insert as helicoil OR drill through and use small aluminium ( as 2017 or 2014 alloy ) bloc drilled and tapped to handle the clamping force


thanks for your reply! No it's not extruded, I have ordered some fine-milled flat aluminium plates and my idea was to mount the support pieces with M4 screws every 60mm or 120mm


You will get nothing as stiffness and on flat raw extruded long parts they will never match perfectly , extruded hollow beam are available at low cost as that a common supply for industry .

Other problem 5083 have a low tensile level so helicoil are mandatory to do not pull off the threads under strain as your camera is in the 25 kg so not a DSLR weight

A solution if you want to use flat in 5083 you can perhaps use fiberglass / carbon composite inside your U beam


ok, yes the thing with helicoil is noted. As I already have those material I would like to give it a try. My milling machine is built by a mechanical engineering prof and he basically used the same material. Although the z-axis is only half the size but on the other hand needs to be withold much more force when milling.  The z-axis of the milling machine is just a 25mm thick 5083 plate
The  fiberglass / carbon composite is a good idea if it's still not stiff enough for the purpose  :-+


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