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Lead Screw Lead

In vertical lead screw actuator applications, lead screw selection is crucial to the safety and success of the system. Prevention of load drift, or screw back drive, during a power loss condition starts with proper selection of a screw’s lead. As a rule of thumb, the lead selected should be at least 3 times smaller than the screw diameter. Less aggressive, finer leads offer increased load drift resistance & safety, however it will result in a negative effect reducing linear carriage travel speed. Alternatively, a more aggressive, coarse lead will offer faster carriage travel speeds, but will not typically provide any resistance to load drift.

Lead Screw | Lead vs Diameter        

Some other methods that can be used to prevent load drift are:

CAUTION: Integration of a reducer, motor with fail-safe brake, or counter balance system will not prevent a load from falling in the event fail-safe brake internals fail or a belt/cable breaks or dislodges from the load being supported.


Jeff Maina
Senior Applications Engineer



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PBC Linear | 6402 Rockton Road, Roscoe, IL 61073 | P. O. Box 6980, Rockford, IL 61125-6980 | Toll-Free (800) 962-8979 | Fax: (815) 389-5790

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