Slideways Design Assistance Keeps Trays Safely Overhead.


Slideways was approached by a Power Transmission Distributor client on behalf of their customer, a manufacturer of baked goods. They have a conveyor system that carries baking trays from one end of the production facility to the other. However, they faced a potential hazard as the trays could fall off the conveyor, from a height up to 10 feet, due to misalignment or instability in the curves. This created a significant safety risk for the workers and could also cause damage to the trays, resulting in costly product losses.

The client had explored various options to address the issue, including conventional guide rail brackets. However, the conventional brackets were not compatible with the conveyor frame, and the client needed a customized solution that would work for their specific needs. This presented a unique challenge for Slideways, who had to come up with a creative and effective solution to guarantee the safe and secure transportation of the baking trays through the conveyor system.


To tackle the challenge at hand, Slideways analyzed the images provided by the client and identified the 1” diameter cross members as a solid place to mount a custom-made bracket. Based on this observation, a bracket idea was sketched out that utilized the knob and eye-bolt of a conventional bracket to hold the adjusting rod, and a clamp design that mounted the bracket to the cross members. An informal sketch was then sent to the client for feedback, and they approved the concept.

With the client's approval, the design was formalized in a drawing, which included confirming the mounting hole spacing, diameter, and height of the guide rail. Once the client approved the drawing and placed an order, Slideways manufactured the brackets within two weeks. The order also included guide rail, adjusting rods, and clips. Installation was made easy as the two-piece design meant no disassembly of the conveyor, and no tools were required for rail positioning because of the knob design.

With Slideways' innovative and personalized solution, the client was able to address the safety concerns and make sure the baking trays remained secure throughout the conveyor's journey. Through straight forward communication between Slideways and the client, and following Slideways’ process of approvals along the way, the parts fit perfectly, resulting in an efficient installation right out of the box.

Slideways is a valuable partner even for those with in-house machining capabilities. We work from your prints or reverse engineer parts from provided samples.

Efficiency - Our specialty is designing and machining complex, custom plastic parts. Our engineers and machinists are experts in the niche “machined plastics” industry enabling you to concentrate on your core competencies of design and metal fabrication. We work from your specs with a vast understanding of conveyor belts and chains, state-of-the-art technical machines, and knowledge of various plastic materials.

Cleanliness - We only machine plastic. All our CNC machinery is specifically tooled for fabricating plastic components. There is no chance of metal contamination, which is especially important in food processing and packaging applications.

Inventory - We stock raw plastic materials; no need to worry about planning, stock levels, or the physical footprint of inventory at your location.

Delivery - We acknowledge your order with a ship date that keeps your scheduling needs in mind. We pride ourselves in just-in-time delivery with a 2-3 week standard lead-time from order to shipment.

Unusual shape? Complex design? Tough material requirements? No matter the case, we can confidently produce a part that suits your application best.

Discover our selection of high quality engineered plastic parts, extrusions and wear components designed to reduce friction.