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  • Mechanism ideas for sorting "V" shaped metal pieces

    Discussion in 'The main mechanical design forum' started by Quantboy, Nov 18, 2022.

    1. Quantboy

      Quantboy New Member

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      Hi everyone,
      I have a project where I have to sort 1000's of metal pieces made of spring steel, that are all shaped as "V"'s. I've considered a few ideas - but was looking for some input because none of my ideas so far are that reliable.

      So... the V's are all the same size.
      made of spring steel (magnetic)
      are made of flat stock (approximately 0.2" wide, and 0.05" thick, with 2" legs on each side of the V, bent at about 30 degrees.

      They are delivered in a bin, mixed up in a big mess.
      I need to be able to sort them so they all stack neatly, one inside the other, preferably mechanically. Ideally I would like to not use a vision system, robotic arms, or anything cost intensive.

      I've considered things like a magnetic "nail alignment" system, however I dont think that solves the problem...
      I've also considered letting them fall down an angled slightly friction inducing plane,. hoping that they would self orient into downward facing arrows.

      Anyone have any ideas? Any similar machines for different applications that do this?

      Thanks in advance!
       
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    3. Erich

      Erich Well-Known Member

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      Contact a vibratory feeder company. The products they make take parts that are mixed in a bowl and create a stream of parts with all the same orientation.
      It is as much art as it is science so paying the guys with experience is the fast track to success.
       
    4. s.weinberg

      s.weinberg Well-Known Member EngineeringClicks Expert

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      A. Experts will have better ideas and know how to implement them, so no disagreement with Eric

      B. Similar to a device I've used in the past for screw presentation, you can have a rotating hopper bring the pieces up to a higher level. Then you can have them run down a wire. If they're not oriented as an inverted V, they'll fall off, back into the bowl. Then you need them to fall neatly into a stack at the end of the wire, which may take a bit of messing around to get exactly right.
      You'll probably need vibration to get the pieces moving along the wire and through whatever nesting bit you have at the end.
      Hope that may get you started
       
    5. Quantboy

      Quantboy New Member

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      THANK YOU to both of you for your input.
      I really like the inverted V on a wire sorter, and the vibratory feeder to move things along.
      Thanks again.
       
    6. JulianJohnson

      JulianJohnson New Member

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      Thanks for solving my problem as well.
       
      Last edited: Dec 23, 2022

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