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FB Chain tastes success with food-grade conveyor solutions

A new range of lube-free plastic combination chains for the food processing and pharmaceutical industries meets strict EU hygiene standards.

The traditional stainless steel chains typically used in the food processing and pharmaceutical manufacturing industries are ripe for premature wear. A risk of contamination from lubricants, especially where direct contact with consumables is unavoidable, means that the chains are frequently required to operate dry. With a short service life and high replacement costs (increasing steel prices show no sign of abating), these chains can be a drain on resources.

Enter FB Chain, who have developed a new range of corrosion resistant chains specifically for the food processing and pharmaceutical manufacturing industries that do not require lubrication for optimal performance and meet strict hygiene standards. FB Chain’s plastic combination (PC) chain is constructed from food-grade engineering plastic inner links, supported by 304 grade stainless steel bearing pins and outer link plates. The PC chain matches the strength of standard stainless steel chain but has a much lower friction co-efficient, eliminating the need for lubrication and increasing wear life. The PC chain is also much quieter and an impressive 50% lighter, helping manufacturers to meet energy efficiency and environmental targets, while enjoying a significantly lower total cost of ownership. Furthermore, the bushed design of the plastic inner link ensures that in wash down applications there is no risk of residue becoming trapped between the chain components and resulting in contamination over time.

Available from stock
FB Chain’s PC chain is available from stock in food-grade blue. A general purpose white engineering plastic is also available, with both versions supplied in sizes from 3/8” to ¾” pitch. The chain is dimensionally interchangeable with stainless steel chain, meaning no adjustments to sprockets or other existing conveyor components are required to accommodate it. Nevertheless, the company is able to supply a wide range of sprockets made from either stainless steel or food-grade approved polymers, as well as high quality thermoplastic chain guides as part of a total package.

Robert Young, process industry sales manager at FB Chain says: “Plastic combination chain – even of the non-food-grade variety – is currently only available from a small number of chain manufacturers. We aim to be the leading supplier in this niche, helping customers in the food and pharmaceutical industries – or indeed with any clean-room application – to significantly improve their safety, efficiency and profitability.”

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