Backstopping clutches, also called holdbacks or backstops, are used as a safety measure to prevent reverse movement of incline conveyors, bucket elevators or pump systems. They not only help protect critical equipment from damage, but they also ensure worker safety.
In backstop applications, backstops allow the drive shaft to rotate freely in one direction. As soon as torque is reversed, however, the clutch automatically locks into place to prevent any movement in the opposite direction. This ensures that machinery – like a conveyor belt carrying heavy bulk materials – does not roll backward.
However, not all backstops offer the same safety and reliability. Even if a backstop has been selected appropriately for an application, unanticipated high-torque loads can cause it to fail, resulting in a rollover. Costly damage, personal injury, and/or downtime may occur if a backstop does not fulfill its backstopping function.
For high-torque applications, it is important to have a robust and reliable backstop solution. New innovations in backstop technology make it possible to prevent rollover and ensure maximum protection for your equipment and employees.
Advanced engineering of the shape and size of the cam element can help enhance backstopping ability. Tsubaki’s BS-F series backstop uses a custom engineered cam design that has a larger profile and higher torque rating than other leading competitors. Even if an unexpectedly large reverse torque occurs, the cams will not roll over, preventing a conveyor from reversing.
The BS-F offers several other enhancements to extend wear life and improve performance. To reduce friction between components, the BS-F utilizes synthetic grease lubrication in a labyrinth-sealed design. This lowers the amount of required maintenance, by removing the need to monitor oil levels, refill the backstop, or measure the amount of moisture in the lubricant. The grease in a BS-F only requires yearly changing for most applications. The labyrinth seal design also prevents dust and other contaminants from getting into the clutch assembly, minimizing wear and ensuring a lower operating temperature.