Ball lock pins make for quick connection and disconnection

Tom Shelley reports on simple button operated gadgets that allow the rapid attachment and removal of parts

Tom Shelley reports on simple button operated gadgets that allow the rapid attachment and removal of parts

Ball Lock Pins have a push button at one end and two spring loaded balls at the other.

Elesa's GN range includes versions which release the spring pressure on the balls when the button is depressed, and versions where pushing the button retracts the balls.

All are designed to join parts when the pins are pushed through a pair of mating holes. Types which release the balls on pressing the button go in easily, but require a fairly strong pull to remove them. Types that use the button to retract the balls require little pressure to insert or remove, except that the button has to be held in.

Typical applications include sports equipment, racking and weight stacks. Connections may be for installation, use or machining. There are low cost versions with plastic pawls, and others with stainless steel balls. There is a short version with a spring-loaded shaft to provide an added clamping action which is especially useful for rapidly fixing two sheets. These are applicable for tooling, workholding, and location of plates for covers and inspection.

Custom applications include incorporation into other elements such as the centre boss of a hand wheel to allow quick removal for security and for quick change operations.

Other products include plastic handles that include a certain amount of silver to kill bacteria and fungus, and a range of square drive shaft knobs with internal 'C' clips that snap on but require 20N or 100N to pull them off.

Elesa (UK)

Tom Shelley

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