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Conveyor Structure.

Conveyor Structure.

Conveyor Structure.

Since the economy is tight.... i have been assigned to squeeze every penny out of our conveyor design...

I have been spent the last 3 weeks working on the discharge, safety guards, etc.  I have also seen that others companies use much less structure then our design.

Actual issue:

We have formed sheet metal side walls which a) keep material from falling out b) protect the nip points on the load idlers. From what I gather the side walls are not considered in the structural design. I have tried the machinist handbook and my old collage books for calculating the structure of bent sheet metal, but did not produce anything i have confidence in.

Is using the sheet metal as structure in the calcs a useful road to try?

If so, are there any good resources on calculating structural properties of formed sheet metal?


RE: Conveyor Structure.

I can't help much, but you will probably have better luck if you include a picture or drawing showing the detail.


RE: Conveyor Structure.

It's probably useful until someone smashes the sideguides up and they get removed.  What kind of failure would happen if the conveyor was operating under full load with sideguides removed?  How are sideguides attached?  You may not be able to transfer load to the sideguides with your current attachment system. You probably need to look at the shear failure induced by differential deformation of the conveyor bed and the sideguides.

RE: Conveyor Structure.

For these side guards they are all welded. Every 72 inches there is a gusset which holds the sheet metal form.

I will make up a picture or sketch tomorrow (hopefully).


RE: Conveyor Structure.

In looking at the sketch you have posted, it appears you have a 48" belt.  The carrying idler is missing something, namely the 2 outer idlers which should be about 6" long each and angled 20 degrees.  This would be at the same angle as you are trying insert the sheet metal.  If there are no outer idlers, your installation must be a mess with spillage.  

In short, I believe you will damage the belt with the sheet metal supporting the belt.  The conveyed product will work under the belt and wear the underside of the belt sliding on the sheet metal.

You need a compotent conveyor manufacturer that can come look at your installation and provide recommendations.  I do not know your location, but if in south central Texas Hi-Line Industries in Brenham, Texas is very capable to help.  There are many other companies of a similar nature throughout the US.  Website below.


RE: Conveyor Structure.

I do not think that your answer is what Gymmeh was seeking-they were trying to establish the means/methods of calculating the conveyor frame as a structure.

I agree that in "bulk" handling their design has some points of concern, but I have used the frame type trough design many times without detriment to the conveyor, belt or product being handled-horses for courses!!

RE: Conveyor Structure.

You don't need all that metal and brackets.

Our conveyors are designed so that the sides, the top and the bottom track are all made from heavy gage sheet steel; one piece per side, spliced every 10-feet.



RE: Conveyor Structure.


I understand that the design is unique and my boss wants it to stay that way so we stand out from our customer, for-better-or-for-worse...  

Between the belt and the sheet metal we weld hardox or AR500 so if material does get caught under there, it does not wear it out fast. However the belt splice causes more wear then the material.

As Ross kinda says, the only thing I really have control over is the structure. Which I have already decrease the size of the linear Channel, and I think I could make them smaller of I could confidently solve the structural strength provided by the sheet metal. Which has not been studied.

The funny thing is we have ansys and I was sent to ansys training... but the person who has the seat for ansys on their computer will not let me use it... in these economic times some people really protect there "turf"...

So I have resorted to Trying to solve this the old fashion way.

FACS, are you saying you use the sheet metal to support/mount the idlers?

I know we dont need all the steel I just need to prove it to my boss... how is not a engineer and wants to have absolute proof.

RE: Conveyor Structure.

hi, if you are still having problems with this, send us a drawing and we will try to help

Conveyor Manufacturers

RE: Conveyor Structure.


thanks, my company is still working on it... but i was reassigned to another project.


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