5 Top Linear Actuator Manufacturers
It is a regular practice that products manufactured by a reputable brand are characterized by a high level of quality and durability. For example, if customers see “Toyota”, they realize that the vehicle from that brand is a top-quality offer. Can we apply that concept to such category of devices as linear actuators? To answer the question, first, it is necessary to introduce some manufacturers that enjoy popularity on the US market.
Meet the US-based linear actuators wholesaler and manufacturer of linear movement control solutions worldwide. The company can boast of a decade of experience in the industry. Progressive Automations strives to bring innovation to the industry by means of producing affordable and high-quality products to customers.
The company has two head offices in Canada and the USA. The latter one is located in Los Angeles, CA. If you are in Canada, you can always visit the distribution center in Richmond, BC. Both offices work five days a week (Mon-Fri) from 6:30 AM to 5:00 PM PST.
Variety of linear actuators
Every year the company releases new models or improve the existing ones. Progressive Automations offers one of the most extensive and affordable lines of electric linear drives on the market. The assortment of products consists of industrial, micro, mini, high speed, heavy-duty, track, and feedback models of electric linear actuators. Each unit has unique capabilities for versatile possible applications. The company also provides a great choice of other products like table and TV lifts that are based on the technology of linear drive.
This linear actuator manufacturer offers 12V models covered with an 18-month warranty. Besides, consumers have an opportunity to customize the chosen model for specific demands including voltage, force, stroke length, dimensions and feedback control.
The cheapest model is PA-07 micro linear actuator. It is a micro linear actuator with up to 12 inches customizable stroke and force of 5 lbs. The model costs almost $70. The flagship of the product line is represented by the high force industrial actuator PA-13 for $465. However, the top edition of the unit (40in stroke and 3000 lbs force) costs $575. Prices for other models fluctuate within $100-200 per item depending on chosen specifications.
The actuator supplier is a famous brand, which tightly cooperates with such giants as NASA, Mercedes-Benz, Delta, Caterpillar and other world-known companies. Customization option and top quality of products are the major advantages of Progressive Automations.
Tolomatic is the most experienced brand of linear actuator manufacturers of our selection. The company commenced its activities in 1954. On this account, the range of products is not limited to electric drives but includes gearboxes, brakes, and pneumatic motion solutions. Despite the status of a dinosaur in the industry, the manufacturer successfully implements innovative technologies.
The manufacturer is a true American brand with headquarters in Hamel, MN. However, a long history of Tolomatic resulted in the opening of the European office in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, and the production facility in Suzhou, Jiangsu, China.
Variety of linear actuators
Tolomatic has all you need for linear movement control with an extensive offering of rodless and rod-style electrical linear drives. A special attention should be drawn to ServoWeld® models used in spot welding for robotics. Such combination of a powerful heavy-load actuator with servo motor technology is ideal for the automotive industry at the stage of body-in-white spot welding.
Rodless electro-mechanical models divide into screw and belt actuators. Electric rod models, in turn, are introduced by several series of products like GSA, RSX, IMA, ERD, and others. Each series is characterized by specific structural peculiarities and particular application conditions. For example, the ERD models
are the perfect choice for pneumatic replacement in product changeover applications or for wash down food and beverage processing applications.
Unlike the above-mentioned representative of 12v linear actuator manufacturers, Tolomatic does not provide exact prices for its products. There are two options to know the price. The first one is to find the nearest distributor. The second one is to submit a quote for a specific product with a description of your project or demands.
The manufacturer leads a sophisticated approach to run business and is aimed at serious industrial application. However, its products are a fit for small businesses and projects as well.
Similar to Tolomatic, this manufacturer of motion control devices has more than 60 years of experience. The brand of Harmonic Drive comprises three enterprises from the USA, Germany, and Japan. The development of the company began with the invention of harmonic gearing. This method of conveying motive power turned conventional wisdom on its head. As a result, a US company and a Japanese company decided to commercialize this concept.
It was mentioned that three locations are responsible for the overall workflow of Harmonic Drive. At the same time, a manufacturing facility in Peabody, MA, USA is the center of operating activities while facilities in Japan and Germany provide additional products. Peabody is also the headquarters venue. Distribution offices can be found in Oak Park, IL, San Jose, CA, and Hauppauge, Long Island, NY.
Variety of linear actuators
Harmonic Drive product range is enormous. According to the official website, the company produces rotary drives, gear boxes, direct drive motors, servo mount gearheads, laser scanning actuators and many other items. Still, linear actuators are what we are interested in. That kind of products is a complete unit of a Harmonic Drive® gear, a high-capacity bearing, and a brush/brushless servo drive. Electric actuators are characterized by high force and significant point-to-point accuracy. At the same time, there are only three series of models:
- LAH series offers two models – LAH-46 (DC motor) and LAH-80 (step motor). Point-to-point accuracy is better than four µm and repeatability of one µm thanks a precision ball screw;
- LA series is represented by two models of 10mm and 30mm stroke with point-to-point accuracy better than 2 µm and repeatability of 0.1 µm;
- LBC series also consists of two models. They differ in force (1350 lbs and 2700 lbs) and resolution (0.32μm and 0.16μm).
Unfortunately, pricing of linear actuators is a mystery. Information is available only at distributors at specified locations. We managed to find two eBay offerings of preowned LBC-25A for $1,599.99 and $899.90. However, these figures have nothing in common with actual prices of Harmonic Drive.
Despite a relatively small range of linear actuators, the manufacturer offers solutions for both high precision and heavy-duty applications. Customization of drive motors (DC or step motor) is an attractive option provided by Harmonic Drive.
The previous representative of electric actuators manufacturers had a production facility in Japan. This company namely Intelligent Actuator, Inc. was founded in the land of the rising sun in 1976. The headquarters in the USA was established in 1989. Despite the significant share of the Japanese linear actuators market, IAI is a leading source of plug-n-play automation solutions in the world.
IAI America is a common name of the US head office in Torrance, CA. Numerous sales offices are dissipated across Northern America. The company is also officially represented in Mexico, Canada, Brazil, Germany, Thailand, China, Taiwan, Korea, Singapore, India, Indonesia, and naturally Japan. Such geography evidences a high status of the manufacturer.
Variety of linear actuators
Categories of products available on the official website include versatile actuators, controllers, robots, and software. It would take a plenty of time to describe each model. So, we will focus on linear servo electric actuators.
LSA series is a collection of versatile models by type:
- LSA-S – shaft type;
- LSA-H – compact type;
- LSA-L – flat type;
- LSA-N – medium type;
- LSA-W – large type;
All types are characterized by high-speed and high precision at long strokes. By the way, the maximum stroke is 4 meters with up to 265 lbs.
RCL series is a lineup of ultra-small linear servo cylinders with up to 25mm diameter.
IAI also prefers not to disclose prices on the official web resource. All orders and relevant information are available at authorized distributors, US support offices or by means of the contact form.
The said manufacturer follows a philosophy of quality and innovation. It means that customers get the highest standards of reliability and performance. Unfortunately, no customization option is provided. IAI offers off-the-shelf products only.
Venture Mfg. Co.
The final company on our list of electric linear actuator manufacturers does not have abroad office and is focused on the US market only. Venture Mfg. Co. offers full CAD and engineering design capabilities. The company’s reputation is evidenced by the ISO 9001:2008 certificate and numerous testimonial from satisfied customers. The most important thing is that the company provides customized products and takes care of clients’ special design needs.
The only office of Venture Mfg. Co. can be found in Dayton, OH, USA.
Variety of linear actuators
The product range is filled with numerous models and accessories. In addition to various types of actuators like solar tracking, military, RV slide-out, Satellite and other actuators, the company specializes in the production of gearboxes and light manufacturing products. Still, linear actuators are what we need.
Electric models are represented by a variety of voltage options namely 12, 24, 36, 90, and 120. These are used to facilitate a straight movement in versatile machine tools and industrial equipment. The category comprises heavy-duty, high speed, industrial, motorized and electromechanical solutions. These actuators are characterized by precise movement control by converting eddy motion of a direct current motor into linear movement.
Venture Mfg. Co. makes special reference to customized solutions built in accordance with customer’s requirements. For such purposes, the company has an advanced CAD/CAM design center for developing innovative linear actuators to meet clients’ expectations.
Of all described manufacturers, Progressive Automation is the only one providing exact prices for its lineup. Venture Mfg. Co. join the other three companies that encourage potential customers to request a quote at first. It is up to you to decide whether it is convenient or not.
Venture Mfg. Co. is a real OEM of actuator products. Original designs, high quality, stability, and dependability of its products brought fruits in the form of a wide customer base. Put in short, a variety of custom capabilities and solutions is really impressive and aimed at clients with different demands.
Choosing a manufacturer according to regalia or reputation is not always a good idea. Some described companies are good at certain applications but fail in others. On this account, your approach to selecting the best product for your needs should rely upon specific technical requirements. Most of the manufacturers offer the customization option that is a huge bonus. AT the same time, a customer should realize that such service costs much more than an off-the-shelf solution.