Ladder Conveyor Belt

Ladder Conveyor Belt

Ladder Belting is a simple but effective style of conveyor belt, commonly found in bakeries.  Its open design provides efficient operation with minimum maintenance as well as facilitating easy and thorough cleaning.

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Ladder belting is a positively sprocket driven belt which is used in straight running applications. A belt variation with a tapered rod pitch assembly can be used in radial applications (90 and 180 degrees).  Its light weight and basic configuration makes it a very economic and cost effective style of belting for many different environments.

Where transportation of smaller products is required these belts can be supplied with a mesh overlay.

Advantages:
  • Flat uniform surface for gentle product handling
  • High tensile rods which resist permanent distortion and reduce down-time
  • Positive drive to ensure there are no tracking issues
  • Smooth edges for easy movement around radial bends
  • U-bar filler rods available for increased product support 
  • Easy belt assembly and disassembly due to its simple open construction.

Typical Applications:

  • Transport
  • Cooking
  • Heating
  • Drying
  • Cooling
  • Drainage
  • Freezing
  • Washing
  • Inspection
  • Packaging
  • Elevating
  • De-Elevating
  • Turning
  • Filling
 

Straight Running Ladder Belt 

Available Specifications

The table below is an extract of the more common specifications:
Pitch (mm) Rod Diameter (mm) Maximum Width (mm)
12.7 3.66 762
15.87 4.47 914
19.05 4.88 914
25.4 4.88 914

Special Raised Rod Flight Belts:

 Raised flight rods can be added to the belt at intervals to suit the customer process.

They can be used for the separation of product or to assist the conveying of product through an incline or decline.

Radial Ladder Belt - to suit 90° and 180° turn conveyors


 

Available Specifications

Pitch (mm) Rod Diameter (mm) Inside Radius (mm)    Available Standard Widths (mm)
12.7 3.66 598.5 229 / 305 / 381 / 457 / 762 *
15.87 4.47 762 305 / 381 / 457 / 610 / 762 / 914 *
*Intermediate widths available upon special request.

Radial ladder belts are available in right hand (clockwise) or left hand (ant-clockwise) arrangement.  Standard belts are supplied for either 90° or 180° conveyor angle of operation.  Specials between 90° and 180° are available upon request.  Confirm full details at time of enquiry.

Belt Material:

Straight and Radial ladder belt is available in 1.4301 (304) stainless steel and mid-tensile carbon steel.

For belt enquiry sheet click here.
 

Drive Sprockets:

Wire Belt Company can also supply sprockets and blanks to drive and support Ladder Belt

Available Materials:

Type 1.4305 (303) stainless steel - which is highly recommended for all applications, especially in food processing industries as it is FDA approved for direct contact with food.

POM (PolyOxyMethylene) plastic, otherwise known as Acetal - usually preferred for light loads, where the operating temperature range is limited to between -20°C to +80°C, and is also FDA approved for food processing applications.

Mild steel.

Other materials available on request.

Contact Wire Belt Company Technical Sales for more information.
 

British Standard Wire Gauge Reference Table

 
British Standard Wire Gauge (SWG) Wire Diameter
(in) (mm)
 
0 0.324 8.23
1 0.3 7.62
2 0.276 7.01
3 0.252 6.40
4 0.232 5.89
5 0.212 5.39
6 0.192 4.88
7 0.176 4.47
8 0.16 4.06
9 0.144 3.66
10 0.128 3.25
11 0.116 2.95
12 0.104 2.64
13 0.092 2.34
14 0.08 2.03
15 0.072 1.83
16 0.064 1.63
17 0.056 1.42
18 0.048 1.22
19 0.04 1.02
20 0.036 0.91
21 0.032 0.81
22 0.028 0.71

Ladder Conveyor Belt Joining Instructions

To enable easy joining of your Ladder Belt, Wire Belt offers a special designed Clinching Tool to close strands together.
For more information on our Ladder Belt Clinching Tool, please contact our Technical Sales Engineers.






 


Ladder Belt Splicing Processes

 

Unhooking of Belt Link Edges



 

Connecting of Belt Link Edges



















 

Closure of Belt Link Edges

High Tension

Excessive tension within the belt circuit should be avoided to maintain optimum running conditions. The following are known causes of high tension in Ladder Belt applications:
  • Belt damage preventing full articulation or side-flex
  • Insufficient wear strip placement
  • Seized or restricted bearing movement
  • Excessive friction between belt and wear strip
  • Excessive product loading

Ladder Conveyor Belt

Maintenance Guide

Straight Running & Radial Belts

The following is a general guide to help prevent downtime during production and maximising the life of the belting.

Daily Check (Visual):

· Inspect drive shaft to make sure that the belt is engaging in the drive sprocket teeth and that no belt slip is occurring.
· Check all Idle shafts to ensure belt is locating correctly in the conveyor centre.
· Check there is adequate clearance between the edge links and the side faces of the sprockets & blanks.
· Check that the belt is not over tensioned.  There should be a catenary slack loop or gravity weighted take up showing low tension.  Tension should only be enough to ensure correct belt & sprocket engagement at the drive without slipping under product loading conditions.
· Check that any adjacent conveyors are not interfering with the ladder belt operation.
· Check for any debris build up on sprockets, blanks, belting or conveyor frame and remove as necessary.

Weekly Check:

· Check condition of all wear strips and replace any that are damaged or worn.
· If there are free rotating blanks or sprockets on any fixed shaft in circuit ensure that they are free rotating and not sticking.
· Check condition of belt and replace any sections that are damaged, worn or distorted.

Monthly Check:

· Check sprockets and rollers are in the original set up position and adjust if necessary.
· Check condition of all sprockets and rollers for wear.  Replace as necessary.  If sprocket teeth are badly worn causing belt slip replace immediately.
· Check all conveyor bearings are free rotating.  Replace ceased or damaged bearings immediately.
· Check and re-grease all conveyor bearings as required.
· Check any chain drive arrangement from geared motor to belt drive shaft and adjust tension if necessary. 
· Check that the belt take-up mechanism is working correctly.
· Check belt speed is operating at the minimum to obtain required production.
· Check condition of conveyor frame to ensure belt edge is not rubbing.
 

Ladder Belt Conveyor Design Guidelines

Straight Running - Positively Sprocket Driven

Typical Belt Circuits

Simple Loop Circuit


Idle Infeed Take-up Options:


NOTE: Ensure that belt take-up adjustment is the same on each side of the conveyor.

Fixed Centres with Return Way Screw Take-up Circuit


 

Fixed Centres with Return Way Gravity Take-up Circuit

Alternative gravity belt circuit;

Fixed Centres with Return Way Gravity Take-up Circuit


NOTE: If you wish to use an alternative belt circuit then please contact Wire Belt Technical Sales to discuss your options.

Drive, Idle Infeed & Other Circuit Shafts Setup





Conveyor Alignment

The conveyor should be set up to run with all shafts parallel and level to each other.
· Make sure all support beds are level and align with the sprocket tooth root dia. 
· Ensure that the conveyor framework runs straight between the idle infeed and the discharge (drive) shaft and that the belt take-up mechanism operates in parallel motion.
· Ensure belt support surfaces are free from obstructions (e.g. protruding framework)

Belt Supports (Typical Arrangement)

Ladder Conveyor Belt Installation Guidelines

Positively Sprocket Driven

Preparation 

Before installing a new belt, always check the conveyor structure;
  • Shafts to be at 90° to direction of travel, and horizontal.
  • Rollers to be free to rotate
  • Belt supporting surfaces are smooth and level with adequate belt edge clearance.  Check that there are no parts of the structure that can catch the belt.
  • If a take-up mechanism is fitted, ensure that it is functioning correctly.

Installation Procedure

 
Tools you will need:
 
  • Safety glasses
  • Ladder Belt Clinching Tool (Part No. 017012)
  • Pulling rope (optional—for long new conveyor installations)
  • Necessary tools for conveyor belt take up adjuster
 
  • In general there is no top or bottom of the belt.  However it is best practice to have the cut tail of the edge link on the underside where possible.  Where belts are supplied with alternating up & down closed edge links there is no top or bottom surface to the belt.
  • The direction of travel is defined by the connecting edge links.  The closed loop of the edge link points in the direction of travel with the cut end of the link lagging.  This ensures that the edge link will not catch at transfers and on parts of the conveyor structure.
1. First ensure that the electrical supply to the conveyor is turned off and the power supply locked out.
2. Release any conveyor belt tension take up mechanism to allow maximum adjustment during installation.
3. The belting should be pulled through the conveyor circuit until the two ends meet.  There are 2 approaches to this:

a. The first being when a belt is replaced for a belt in situ on the conveyor.  In this instance, using the ladder belt clinching tool, open up the edge links of the existing belt at a position close to the infeed end (non drive end) of the conveyor. Unhook the edges of the belt and attach the leading edge of the new roll to the lagging edges of the existing belt on the carry way surface. In general there is no need to close the loop edges of the new belt until installation is complete.  By means of supporting the new belt roll you will be able to carefully drive the belt (operate at slow speed) into the conveyor using the existing belt. Always maintain suitable belt tension to ensure there is no belt slip on the drive shaft sprockets.  Whilst the belt is being driven in the old belt should be collected as it exits the underside at the infeed end and layered carefully onto a pallet or suchlike for disposal. Once the new belt exits the return way then disconnect it from the old belt. Then continue from step 4.

a. The second is when a new belt is fitted to a conveyor and there is no existing belt (such as a new installation). The belt will have to be fed through the conveyor circuit by hand. Position the belt close to the infeed end (non drive end) of the conveyor. For short conveyors you will be able to pull the belt through by hand ensuring the new belt aligns correctly with the drive shaft sprockets and any circuit rollers.  For long conveyors attach a pulling rope to the open leading edge loops.  You may need to close this link to ensure that the attachment rope does not unhook from the edges during installation.  The rope is first fed through the conveyor to the discharge.  From here the belt can be pulled through the carry way part of the circuit. Once the lead edge of the belt is at the discharge end the rope should then be fed back through the return way of the belt circuit to the infeed end.  It can then be pulled (maybe with slow speed drive assistance) to the infeed end.  Once the leading end of the new belt exits the return way at the infeed end of the conveyor the pulling rope is then removed. Then continue from step 4.



4. The edge links of the leading end are then re-opened if they were closed after fitting a pulling rope.
5. Pull the leading end of the belt up around the idle infeed roller and lap over the trailing end of belt.
6. Excess belt is then removed by opening the edge loops at the join position of the trailing end of the new belt.  Remove the excess belt and put aside for spares use.  When setting the required belt length ensure that any take-up mechanism is set to minimum to ensure further belt length adjustment in use.
 


7. The two opposing ends of the belt are then pulled together.
8. The link edges of the leading end of the new belt is then linked over the trailing end rod. 
9. Check that the belt is lining up with the sprocket & roller arrangements throughout the circuit.
10. By use of the Ladder Belt Clinching Tool close the edge links securely to prevent un hooking in operation.  Care should be taken when closing the loops not to close them too much and prevent correct articulation of the belt at this position.
11. Re-tension the belt enough to maintain adequate drive without over tensioning, whilst  maintaining further belt length adjustment for continued use.
12. Check there are no belt parts or tools left on, or in the conveyor.
13. Remove power lock off and then start the conveyor and test run under slow running conditions before running at normal operating speed.
 
  • Longer belts may be supplied in sections and therefore multiple belt joins will be necessary.
  • In general these instructions also cover the installation of Radial Ladder Belts.

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