Three-jaw grippers open 180 degrees

Paul Boughton
AGI is introducing the three-jaw AGA (angular gripper actuator) series that comprises four models. The gripper jaws' 180-degree opening is useful for applications where only a limited working envelope is available. The AGA-23, 33, 43 and 53 series have stroke-limiting screws to adjust the stroke between 0 and 180 degrees. All of these units are double-acting, with multiple airports and mounting locations; they are available with sensor options for easy interfacing to electrical controls if required.

When the jaws are completely opened, the workpiece can be placed in a fixture without having to retract the gripper. This can save an extra step as well as the expense of another axis of movement. The toggle mechanism greatly increases the gripping force as the jaws near the fully closed position, becoming self-locking when beyond the parallel position. Internal linkages are guided by two groves that run the length of the body, preventing the tooling jaws from loosing the centre repeatability. In cases where long jaws are needed, bumpers or miniature hydraulic shocks can be used to decelerate the jaw at the end of the stroke.

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