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A cleat is an upright profile attached to the top surface of conveyor belts to increase load capacity on incline systems. Read more to learn about our thermoplastic cleating ability.
Belt cleats are available in a wide variety of sizes, forms, colors, and materials. For the most part, the cleat and the belt need to be fashioned out of the same material in order to have a strong bond and a long life of service. PVCs (polyvinyl chloride), RMVs (rubber modified vinyl), and urethanes make up the majority of thermoplastics that are used in the belting industry. When subjected to the right amount of heat, these compounds will “melt,” and then when they cool, they will join together. If everything is done correctly, the two heated surfaces will fuse together, resulting in a thermoplastic cleated belt that is robust and suitable for your purpose.
Before your belt is welded together, Motion Conveyance Solutions can adapt it to better suit your requirements based on the specifications of the application it will be used for.
Here are three things to keep in mind:
1. THERE ARE MANY WAYS TO BOND THERMOPLASTIC CLEATING
Thermal Welding: This bonding method forces hot air against the thermoplastic cleating (link) and belt. Pressure is then applied to ensure 100% bonding–a simple procedure performed on sophisticated machinery. This method is the fastest, most economical bonding technique, and is used whenever feasible.
HF Welding: This method also fuses the cleats to the belt by heating them. However, this heat is generated internally as the HF excites/heats the molecules in the cleat and belt. Stronger bonds and intricate cleat patterns are possible using this method but often require special, custom tooling.
Did you know? HF (high frequency) welding is also known as RF (radio frequency) welding.
Cold Bond: Cementing the cleat to the belt is all that is involved in the cold bond technique. Although this is a tried and tested technique, cold bonding is not one of the methods that we recommend. It is only employed in situations where the cleat layout design cannot be manufactured using either welding method.
2. THERE ARE MANY CLEAT STYLES TO CHOOSE FROM
T-Cleats: Usually made of a PVC compound, these cleats have a broad base and are at a 90° to the belt surface. Heights range from 1/2″ to 4″ tall.
C-Cleats: Also known as a “scoop cleat,” this is the same as a T-cleat except the cleat is “bent” over to 65° from belt surface. This cleat is available up to 3″ high.
Lug Cleats: A lug cleat is a common term to describe a square cross section or when using a V-guide as a cleat. Most sizes are available in PVC and urethane.
Thin Line and Footless Cleats: Designed for small pulley conveyors, these cleats are generally only available in urethane and use the HF welding method. Although thinner than PVC T-cleats, these cleats are very durable and cut resistant. Depending on size and style required, thin line and footless cleats are available in white, black, blue, beige, green, and clear.
3. MODIFICATIONS AND CUSTOMIZATIONS ARE AVAILABLE
There is not a “standard” cleat pattern, as the specifications of every conveyor belt system will differ. This especially depends on the industry or application the conveyor belt is being used for. If your system needs a specialized cleat, existing cleats can be personalized by making modifications to their ends. These customizations include indentions, cutting out notches or cuts, and tapering.
We have the ability to deliver the thermoplastic belt cleat that you desire, regardless of the specific requirements that your application has. Get in touch with our team today to learn more about our full scope of cleating possibilities.
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