Pneumatic cylinders, sometimes also simply called air cylinders, use compressed gas operated with air compressors to move hydraulics or pistons. They are quieter, cleaner, and generally take far less storage space than comparable hydraulic cylinders. They're available in thousands of different varieties but can also be relatively easily tweaked or retrofitted to suit specific tasks. Often utilised with other OEM equipment, they can lift, push, lower, pull, print, rotate or clamp products and parts of all kinds. They're also inexpensive and easy to use and install and don't carry much risk of overheating or malfunctioning in rough environments.
Pneumatic Cylinder Brands
Many manufacturers produce varying collections and types of pneumatic cylinders. Some of the top brands include Fabco-Air, Trust Cylinders and Valves, Camozzi, Crankshaft, SMC, Festo, Parker and Univer. Some of these manufacturers offer notable perks such as lifetime warranties. The manufacturer or brand can also often determine the cost of maintenance or replacement parts.
Pneumatic Cylinder Types
There are a wide variety of different pneumatic cylinder types, optimised to a wider variety of applications, including opposed-thrust cylinders, rotary cylinders, tandem cylinders, rodless cylinders, flanged cylinders, threaded-end cylinders, impact cylinders and cushion cylinders. But the most common, by and far, are simple single or double-action cylinders which move objects in either one or two directions, respectively.
Pneumatic Cylinder Options
Pneumatic cylinders come in many different sizes from as small as 2.5 mm to as large as 39 inches. They also vary widely in speed with most able to adjust speeds within a small range. The vast majority of pneumatic cylinders are manufactured in metals, including steel, nickel, nickel-plated brass, stainless steel and aluminium. They can also be found with many different mounting options, including stand-alone floor models, table-mounted options and wall-mounted varieties.
Alternative Pneumatic Cylinders
In some specialised cases where more unique industrial equipment is required, pneumatic cylinders don't provide the traditional action but instead perform other actions. This can allow the pneumatic cylinders to act as grippers, vacuum operators or even power rotating platforms.