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Most machines that we use today comprise moving and stationary elements. A few components like machine ways or rail guides serve as an interface between these elements. Rail guides are the tracks on which machine carriages like machine columns, robots, and spindle housing move. These rail guides differ in terms of design and dimensions. They are equipped with bellows, boots, and covers to protect them from damage during the machine operation. Having said that, it can be easily understood that there are no standard-size rail covers or bellows that would work for all industries. This is where custom rail covers will come in handy. What do custom rail covers mean? What are the choices available to you? Read this post to know the answers.

Custom Rail Covers: How Do They Differ from Standard Rail Covers

As the name suggests, these rail covers are the ones that are not built in standard sizes and are customized specifically to applications. These rail covers differ in terms of shapes, sizes, manufacturing techniques, materials, and above all – designs. As a result, the customization choices may vary across manufacturers. The next section discusses a few customization options offered by Nabell, Inc., which is one of the leading manufacturers of custom rail covers and way covers in the US.

Features of Custom Rail Covers Offered by Nabell, Inc.

Nabell provides a high level of customization for way covers or rail covers. The following pointers will help you understand it better.

  1. Base Materials: The way covers can be made from any of the following materials:
    • Aluminized Kevlar
    • Polyurethane
    • Neoprene Coated Nylon
    • Polyurethane Coated Polyester
    • Polyurethane Coated Nylon
    • Preoxidized Kevlar
    • PVC Coated Polyester and more

Each material offers a distinct set of advantages, which many manufacturers find beneficial. For instance, Aluminized Kevlar is known for its durability, abrasion and heat resistance, and low flammability. Similarly, polyurethane-coated nylon is known for its durability, flexibility, lightweight, and water resistance features. Thus, it becomes a choice for applications where these characteristics may be required.

  1. Applied Processes: The experts at the company employ thermal and RF welding, folding, and sewing techniques to create custom rail and way covers. Sewn rail covers are chosen for most applications because they are easy to produce and require no extensive tooling or die casting. Similarly, folded covers are produced as one-piece construction and produce rigid covers, which are ideal for applications where rail guides may require a high level of protection. Welded bellows are created by fusing several sheets of thin polymers to create durable bellows. This fusion may be conducted at high temperatures and radio frequencies.
  2. Thicknesses: The way covers can be availed in multi-layer and single-layer constructions with thicknesses ranging from 0.2mm to 1.17mm.
  3. Compliances and Certifications: Nabell understands the compliances across industries. It can produce bellows that meet or exceed standards such as RoHS, REACH, FAIR CONFLICT Minerals, COC, and UL94 VTM-0.
  4. Colors: These bellows can be availed in any color of your choice.

So, if you have been considering custom rail covers for your rail guides or machine ways, ensure to get in touch with the experts at Nabell, Inc. The experts at the company work closely with their clients. The company has been supplying these rail covers to the clients across refinery, petrochemical, water, irrigation, pulp & paper, automobile and construction industries meeting their compliance requirements. These way covers or rail covers are used to protect different types of way or rail guides in these industries. Some common applications include ball rail systems, roll rail systems, miniature ball rail systems, and cam roller guides. Due to their construction and design, these custom rail covers are proven to withstand hot chips, cutting oils, coolants, lubricants, moisture/water, salt and sea spray, grinding and swarf, thereby enabling clients to maximize the value of their machines.

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