Miniature camera enthusiasts

Miniture iCams® cam followers are available from stock and in custom imperial and metric sizes. These small cam follower upgrades had a big impact on the robotics industry.

It’s common to run into issues when trying to select small camera trackers for an app. Certain design constraints may limit the choices available. There may be pressing questions like questions like, “Can the cam followers be easily accessible for lubrication?” or “Will the metal cam followers wear out the aluminum tracks?” But the most common is “will they hold up to washing and if so for how long?”

Fortunately, Intech Corporation offers a solution in the form of iCam® cam followers, which we can design with outside diameters (OD) as small as 4 millimeters. Self-lubricating, quiet, and maintenance-free, these components eliminate the typical challenges of integrating small cam followers into machine designs.

Smaller and lighter machine designs mean smaller components

As robotics expands into more and more applications – for example, surgical and laboratory equipment, storage systems and packaging machinery – machine designs are becoming lighter, more smaller and more compact. Due to this trend, the demand is also increasing for small, precise and maintenance-free cam followers and guide rollers. Mounted on aluminum or stainless steel rails, these motion elements support and guide extendable robotic arms that grab packages from warehouse shelves, rotate WiFi antennas on airplanes, or guide laundry baskets in a ultrasonic cleaning bath, for example.

However, due to their small size, metal cam followers and guide rollers can be difficult to access and lubricate. If you work in medical or cleanroom environments, you may want to avoid lubrication altogether. These components must also operate quietly – a particularly important feature in medical equipment – to absorb shock and vibration and prevent wear, ensuring uninterrupted availability.

Small iCams® meet these requirements

Answering the call for small, grease-free rolling elements, Intech iCam® cam followers and guide rollers offer the following benefits:

Small and compact. iCam® cam followers are available with outer diameters as small as 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 16 or 19 millimeters. Intech engineers have also designed and manufactured small stock units with outside diameters starting at 1/2 diameter.

Dimensionally stable. Available with sealed stainless steel or ceramic bearings, iCams® feature a precision-machined outer bearing race of Power-Core™ material. Compared to other polymers, Power-Core exhibits high wear resistance, absorbs shock and vibration, and does not swell in the presence of moisture. As a result, it is dimensionally stable, providing precise and continuous movement, even in washdown environments.

Self-lubricating. iCams® feature sealed ball bearings that are pre-lubricated for life. Plus, the aluminum and stainless steel surfaces they run on don’t need to be lubricated either. With these features, you no longer have to worry about lubricating those hard-to-reach little cam followers. Since you no longer have to replace worn metal components in contact with metal cam followers, you also save on maintenance and downtime.

No wear or contamination. Unlike metal cam followers, the iCams’® Power-Core Outer Runner does not wear away the metal surface it operates on, preventing the generation of metal particles. By avoiding this common source of contamination, iCam® cam followers and guide rollers are an excellent replacement for metal cam followers in food, beverage and pharmaceutical applications.

Calm. Thanks to the shock-absorbing properties of Power-Core and precision-machined surfaces, iCams® feature a smooth, quiet rolling motion. In fact, our iCams® reduce noise by approximately 10 decibels compared to metal cam followers.

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