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ROTOCON® Slip Ring Installation Guidelines

Optimal ROTOCON® Slip Ring Assembly Installation Guidelines

Every Application is a Little Different, Here’s Some Best Practice Guidelines for your ROTOCON®


Installing your ROTOCON® isn’t a difficult process. We get a lot of questions from new customers (and even existing ones with new or innovative applications) asking what are the best ways to ensure an optimal installation process, so we’ve compiled a few helpful tips to help you get your ROTOCON® Slip Ring Assembly up and running the right way, the first time.

As always, if you have questions or concerns of any kind, contact us, our engineers will be happy to assist you in properly installing your ROTOCON®


Properly Mounting Your ROTOCON® Slip Ring

Every ROTOCON® installation should  allow for movement via a non-rigid coupling on either the stationary OR the rotating end of the ROTOCON®. If your ROTOCON® is rigidly connected on both portions of the slip ring, small misalignments between the rotating and stationary mounts can side load the unit, ultimately causing failure of bearings and internal electrical contacts. To avoid this, we recommend the use of flexible shaft coupling (such as a Lovejoy coupling) on the shaft end of your ROTOCON® unit (if mounted by the body of the slip ring assembly).

Shaft Mounting Your ROTOCON®

Mounting your ROTOCON® Slip Ring Assembly by the shaft means that the body of the assembly will need to be stabilized to stop it from rotating freely. There are a number of methods for doing this, but we recommend, and include, a spring mount and screw intended for this purpose. Your ROTOCON® is equipped with a threaded hole for use with this mounting hardware. In order to use it, you simply install the included spring and screw onto the body of your ROTOCON® and connect the opposite end to a stationary piece or part of your machine.

IMPORTANT! If a rigid connection is used on the shaft, your ROTOCON® housing must have a non-rigid restraint, such as the provided anti-rotation spring (figure 1) or an anti-rotation bracket(figure 2). We provide this spring for all standard rigid shaft restraints because your electrical wires should never be used to inhibit the rotation of your ROTOCON®’s body. When wiring is used for anti rotation purposes, excessive rotation speeds and continuous operation will eventually degrade the quality of your electrical connections, causing inefficient signal and power transmission, which can ultimately lead to failure of your slip ring assembly, and machine downtime.


ROTOCON Slip Ring Rotational Stabilization Techniques

Mounting Springs and Brackets on a ROTOCON® Slip Ring (figures 1 and 2)


UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES should you drill or weld into the housing of your ROTOCON®. This will destroy internal components, and result in immediate catastrophic failure of the unit. Special mounting arrangements are available from Meridian Laboratory if required.


ROTOCON® Slip Rings are intended to serve as an electrical device only. Your ROTOCON Assembly should never be used as a load-bearing device, or mechanical turntable.


Body Mounting Your ROTOCON®

For installations where the body of your ROTOCON® Unit is held stationary by a rigid means, we recommend the use of a flexible shaft coupling  to allow movement for small misalignments between your rotating and stationary assemblies. This coupling should be attached to the shaft of your ROTOCON® slip ring securely, and should not allow excessive play or vibration.



Orientation and Rotational Direction

ROTOCON® Rotary Electrical contact assemblies are designed to operate in any orientation (horizontal, vertical, angled), unless specific orientation instructions are supplied by Meridian Laboratory for your specific application or assembly. ROTOCON® Slip Ring Assemblies are engineered to enable either clockwise, counterclockwise, or oscillating rotation for any installation without any change in performance.



Electrical Connections

ROTOCON® Rotating electrical connectors provide a low resistance, bidirectional electrical connection between rotating and stationary assemblies. It is not important which direction your current flow enters and exits the ROTOCON® shaft or housing, as long as they do not exceed the current and voltage specifications specific to your model. If your unit was constructed to meet special requirements on some of the contacts (i.e. Signal vs. Power), it is important to correctly identify the proper contact for each signal type. Improperly wiring your ROTOCON® by crossing signal and power connections is likely to exceed the rated current of your wiring.  If you have difficulty identifying specific contacts, the engineers at Meridian Laboratory will be happy to help you correctly connect your ROTOCON® Slip Ring Assembly.



RPM Limitations and Vibration

Each ROTOCON® model has a maximum RPM rating. These specifications are based on continuous operation and the heat generated by your slip ring, in combination with ambient temperatures in your operating environment. RPM limitations are calculated to ensure temperatures inside your ROTOCON® slip ring remain below 160°F(70°C). Excessive rotational speeds can lead to overheating and eventual damage of internal components. Although ROTOCON® slip ring assemblies are very rugged, situations involving extreme equipment vibration may require special designs to ensure maximum performance and longevity. If you suspect that vibration may be a problem for your application, contact the engineers at Meridian Laboratory for guidance.



Operating Temperature

Typically, the maximum internal operating temperature of all standard ROTOCON® models is 160°F(70°C)†. This means that irrespective of the ambient temperature, your application requirements (environment, rotational speed, excessive friction, etc) should not require your ROTOCON® assembly to operate above this temperature for extended periods. If long term excessive ambient air temperatures or equipment shaft temperatures are allowed to overheat the ROTOCON® unit, damage may eventually occur to internal components. Heating the ROTOCON® lead wires may also contribute to excessive internal temperatures‡. Special mounting methods can also be used to reduce the effect of high shaft temperatures. Contact Meridian Laboratory for detailed information concerning high temperature installations.

† ROTOCON® designs with forced air or water cooling are available for high temperature applications.

‡ Meridian Laboratory offers high temperature wiring options for applications where it is required.