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Greater precision in the workplace is some of the most compelling benefits of custom industrial joysticks. Most industrial settings require control that is accurate, durable, and better suited to company needs than off-the-shelf joysticks. Whether you need a joystick for industrial machinery, vehicles, or custom-built equipment, there’s a variety of options to choose from. Understanding the options can help you select a joystick that would best fit your machine and the design of your system.
Option 1: Position Hold Joysticks
The most common type of joystick is a position-hold joystick. A position-hold joystick maintains its handle position by either friction or detents.
Friction-hold joysticks allow the operator to smoothly maneuver the handle position anywhere within the operating angle of the joystick and have it remain in that position. The friction hold feature allows operators to easily perform multiple operations with one hand, without having to continually push against a spring force to keep their hand on the handle. This reduces operator fatigue and allows for better control over the machine being operated by allowing operators to maintain constant pressure on their grip without having to rest their hands against something else for support.
In contrast, detent joysticks are spring-return joysticks, which use two springs working together: one that returns the lever to the center when released (spring A), and another that returns it linearly when pulled (spring B). The springs work together so that when the lever is released by letting go of it, spring A will retract first until it reaches its full extension length before spring B begins retracting.
Option 2: Spring Return To Center Joysticks
There are two types of spring return joystick mechanisms. A central spring, mounted at the base of the shaft, and dedicated spring designs, where there is one spring for the X axis and one spring for the Y axis. Joysticks utilizing dedicated spring returns are often categorized as “guided feel”.
Dedicated Spring Return
In a dedicated spring return design, each access has its own independent spring, so that each access can move independently without affecting the other. This allows for better control and smoother movement in single-spring designs. The downside is that you cannot use both axes simultaneously as they work against each other if used together.
A central spring design uses a single center mountain spring that returns both axes simultaneously when released. This type of design requires less fine control than other types of joysticks because both axes move together when released. These joysticks are usually found in commercial environments or gaming consoles where comfort and consistency are Paramount.
Option 3: Thumb Joysticks
A thumb joystick is a mini joystick controller that can be operated by the thumb. Thumb joysticks offer smooth, precise control of her movement with a mini join stick controller that can be operated by the thumb. Industrial thumb controllers deliver sensitive, reliable movement control from your machine, controller pad, or panel.
Joysticks that are operated by the thumb are ideal for applications where space is limited or work control needs to be operated away from the operator’s hand. They are also used when there is a need to operate two different functions at once or if there is a need to operate two functions with one hand (e.g. welding). These joysticks can be mounted in various positions, depending on the application requirements– horizontal or vertical mount options are available for convenience and ease of use.
Option 4: Finger Joysticks
Finger joysticks are used in a wide range of applications including robotics, medical equipment, machine tools, and other industrial applications. These joysticks include a ball mounted on a spring mechanism. When the user moves his finger back and forth, as well as up and down, the joystick allows for precise control over whatever function it’s being used to control.
Option 5: Hand Grip Joysticks
A hand grip joystick helps direct the movement of an object by providing users with an easy means to control it. A typical example would be an industrial robot arm that moves along two axes, allowing it to pick up and move objects around your workspace. Hand grip joysticks come in many different shapes and sizes, but they all feature some common characteristics. They usually consist of two parts: a handle grip on the top and a base underneath that contains the electronics and motors needed to move the arm or other device being controlled by the device.
Option 6: Single, Dual, Triple, And Quad+ Joysticks
Single, dual, and triple-axis hand-grip joysticks are the most common types of hand grips for manufacturing equipment. They feature one or two axes of movement – horizontal, vertical, or both. A quad+ axis joystick features four or more axes of movement– one for horizontal movement, one for vertical, and a third axis that allows the joystick to rotate around an axis in between them, as well as an additional axis, depending on your needs. This type of controller allows you to move in all directions – including diagonal directions – with extreme accuracy, and precision. It is ideal for applications that require precise movements, such as robotics or robotic surgery.