Choosing belt or
chain: In deciding between bead belt and bead chain, the following factors
should be considered:
load on the drive should be within the values given in table 1, "Maximum Static
Loads" (listed below) if bead chain is to be used. A safety factor of about 4
should be allowed. Transient forces due to detents, stops, etc. must also be
considered in calculating the maximum tension in the drive.
accuracy of bead chain is somewhat superior to that of bead belt. Brass of
better for point-to-point accuracy than stainless steel because the better cold
working properties of brass result in more accurate geometry.
chain loops can be joined in the field, whereas plastic bead belt must be
bead belt is a good electrical insulator and will not radiate electromagnetic
energy when used in electronic instruments. Metallic bead chain is an
electrical conductor but can be insulated from other components by the use of
steel chain can be used for sanitary or corrosive applications. This quality is
important because the beads are hollow and can thus can carry contaminating
liquids. Generally. lubrication cannot be used in either sanitary or chemical
applications. Plastic belt cannot be used in the presence of many solvents.
bead belt can be used at temperatures up to 180 F. Stainless steel should be
used for high-temperature applications, although the oxides which form on the
surface reduce flexibility.
bead chain is more flexible than bead belt, its flexibility decreases when
wrapped around small diameter sprockets with less than 16 bead sockets.