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Hydraulic Cylinder Blog
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3 Considerations for Cylinder Mount Selection

posted by RAM Industries Inc.    |   October 31, 2022 08:05

3 Considerations for Cylinder Mount Selection

The mounts on your hydraulic cylinders should fit perfectly into your equipment design. Using engineered hydraulic cylinders with mounts specifically designed for your OEM equipment ensures optimal performance.

The most important reason to carefully consider these different aspects of the mounts you select for your cylinders is to provide stability and ensure longevity on your equipment.

Prevent unnecessary failure or wear and tear by choosing cylinders with the perfect mounts for your application.

1. Application Performance Requirements

Through building relationships, the RAM technical sales and engineering teams work to understand how your application works to understand the specific fit and performance requirements for your application. Performance factors that can help influence the type of mount used include:

  • Operating environment
  • Operating temperatures
  • Maximum internal pressure ratings
  • Linear travel path
  • Tolerance for misalignment
  • Risk of shock loads

2. Cylinder Mounting Type

Once the RAM team understands the operating parameters of your equipment, we can recommend the ideal type of mount to use. Common examples of mounts include:

  • Centerline Cylinder Mounts are fixed and absorb force on the centerline of the cylinder.
  • Flange Cylinder Mounts are fixed and absorb force eccentric to the cylinder center line.
  • Pivot Cylinder Mounts allow the cylinder body to move while the piston rod is in motion and absorbs force on the centerline of the cylinder.

3. Mount Customizations

RAM can design and incorporate custom mounts in a wide array of styles. In addition to using a uniquely designed mount, there are a variety of other customized mounting options which can help improve the performance of your cylinder, including:

  • Alternative mount locations for optimal placement within your equipment designs
  • Spherical bearings to compensate for misalignment
  • Bushings for ease of maintenance
  • Exotic materials provide additional strength and durability
  • RAM is committed to providing hydraulic cylinder solutions that work for your specific applications.

Contact RAM to discuss your cylinder mounting options today!



Telescopic Cylinders That Go The Distance!

posted by RAM Industries Inc.    |   October 31, 2022 08:00

 Telescopic Hydraulic Cylinders That Go The Distance

RAM Telescopic cylinders are the perfect solution for applications that demand a long cylinder stroke in a compact cylinder design. Telescopic cylinders provide a long stroke from a very compact retracted length.

RAM offers a full line of standard telescopic designs for your equipment. With 36 base designs to select from, all you need to do is pick the configuration, stroke and mounting option that works best for your application. RAM’s standard design includes specially prepared chrome tubing, high quality seals, and high strength internal components that can be easily serviced and replaced.

RAM also offers custom Telescopic cylinders that provide the flexibility to work with our engineering experts to determine the cylinder design requirements that perfectly fit your equipment fit and performance requirements. Custom telescopic cylinders can be built up to 5000 PSI providing additional force in heavy duty applications.

RAM offers both Single and Double Acting designs with up to 5 stages, and a wide selection of mount configurations.

The Single Acting Telescopic cylinder is the simplest of telescopic designs. A Single Acting telescopic cylinder is extended using hydraulic pressure, but is retracted using external forces (i.e. gravity or mechanical load) once the pressure is removed.

A Double Acting Telescopic cylinder is a more complex design and involves additional sealing within the internal body of the cylinder to seal off the different stages. Passageways are machined into the internal components of the cylinder to allow for proper staging. This type of design is usually utilized when gravity is not available to retract the cylinder.

RAM has the expertise working with OEM customers to either modify a standard design, or create a new prototype for their equipment.

Contact the experts at RAM today to find the right Telescopic cylinder solution for you!



How Intelligent Are Your Cylinders?

posted by RAM Industries Inc.    |   July 21, 2022 08:05

Position Sensing Hydraulic Cylinders

As your equipment becomes more sophisticated, your hydraulic cylinders should too!

RAM’s Smart Sensing Cylinders incorporate position sensing technology that streamlines equipment operation. With trends toward automation, position sensing hydraulic cylinders provide the smart integration required to complete an intelligent hydraulic system. With the increased demand for this technology, applications that utilize loading and unloading, transporting, lifting, and processing will benefit from these position sensing cylinders.

RAM cylinders incorporate Linear Displacement Transducers (LDTs), often referred to as linear position sensors. This technology can capture positional data and relay feedback through a signal to the hydraulic control system. The electronic feedback generates semi-automated or automated responses in the system triggering actions or sounding alarms as dictated by the specific application.

This innovative componentry achieves digital precision that responds to operational conditions as they occur. This real-time response creates efficiencies through automated responses and optimizes work for operators improving productivity and efficiency through increased output.

When you are designing your intelligent systems, look to RAM Industries to provide smart hydraulic cylinders that will perfectly integrate into your system.

RAM’s experienced engineering team works with the experts at your company to ensure the cylinder sensors will perfectly connect with your hydraulic system. We will help evaluate various considerations in the sensor selection specific to your performance requirements, including

  • Sensor accuracy required
  • Size and weight of the sensor
  • Measurement range of the sensor  
  • Operational temperatures of the equipment
  • Need to withstand environmental conditions

RAM cylinders can incorporate external or internal sensors depending on the application. The cylinder bore sizes, stroke lengths, and mounting options are configured to meet your unique specifications.

While the shift to automation is rapidly increasing, RAM Industries has supported customers with smart sensing cylinder solutions for over fifteen years!

Trust RAM to provide position sensing cylinders as you enhance your equipment connectivity and performance.

Contact RAM today!



Cylinder Storage 101

posted by RAM Industries Inc.    |   July 21, 2022 08:00

Hydraulic Cylinder Storage 101

When purchasing hydraulic cylinders for your equipment, proper storage and maintenance are essential considerations in the performance of these cylinders on your equipment.

RAM Industries values collaborative relationships with our OEM customers. We stand behind the quality of our products and aim to provide seamless integration of our cylinders onto your equipment.

Three factors can maximize cylinder condition during storage.

1. External Corrosion Protection

RAM Industries provides maximum corrosion protection for cylinders through our two-part polyurethane paint. The paint provides external protection with short storage times in dry rooms at a constant temperature. Non-painted cylinder and part surfaces are protected using corrosion-protecting oil during assembly.

2. Internal Preservation

Every RAM hydraulic cylinder is hydraulically tested using petroleum-based oil. After testing, the oil film remains inside the cylinders, providing short-term internal corrosion protection. The line connections are closed after the test with secure plugs.

3. Inspection and Maintenance

Cylinders that require more than six months of storage, regularly scheduled inspections and maintenance are recommended.

  • Every 6 weeks rotate hydraulic cylinders that are stored horizontally by 90 degrees to prevent damage to the seals.
  • Inspect and coat the cylinder surfaces with corrosion protection oil.
  • Inspect and lubricate spherical bearings.
  • Inspect and lubricate fitting surfaces or mechanical interfaces.
  • Extend and retract the hydraulic cylinder several centimeters to prevent the seals from bonding. 

Properly storing and maintaining your cylinders helps ensure maximum cylinder performance and prevent issues during installation.

RAM is committed to providing full-service solutions.  Engineering support is available in the final assembling and testing when fitting cylinders on new equipment. The engineering team can also provide troubleshooting for unique challenges that may arise when installing cylinders.

The RAM team is committed and responsive to the needs of our customers.

Contact the RAM team for your cylinder quote today!



Water-Based Hydraulic Cylinders

posted by RAM Industries Inc.    |   June 20, 2022 08:05

Water-Based Hydraulic Cylinders

Identifying sustainable and safe alternatives to traditional petroleum-based hydraulic fluid is critical to many industries including, marine, industrial, and mining applications. Water-based solutions can deliver robust protection under increasingly strenuous operating conditions while still helping improve operational efficiency, sustainability and safety.

Look to RAM Industries to design and manufacture hydraulic cylinders that perform reliably and utilize these environmentally friendly hydraulic fluid options.

Using water as your primary fluid follows the same principles of traditional hydraulic cylinders for power production. The pressurized fluid places force against the piston to extend the cylinder. While there may be some performance differences, there are significant benefits to using this hydraulic medium. Selecting hydraulic cylinders that can properly utilize this fluid is critical!

Cost Savings – Water-based solutions typically contain 95 percent water with only 5 percent of a biodegradable synthetic additive. This means these solutions cost much less per gallon than petroleum-based fluids do.

Environmentally Friendly– Sustainable and biodegradable formulations for hydraulic fluid are increasing in demand as they reduce the environmental impact of leaks, equipment breakdown or spillage.

Safety – For many industries, eliminating harmful risks to the operator(s) and the environment are essential. Water-based hydraulic fluid is non-toxic and non-flammable. Applications with high operating environments of fire risk, such as mining, often rely on water-based cylinders for their fire resistance.

RAM’s expertise extends to all types of hydraulic cylinders. Our engineering team considers all the operational impacts of the cylinder design when utilizing water-based hydraulic fluids.

Material Selection – Stainless steel and nickel-over-chrome are common materials for components and provide corrosion protection.

Seals – Specialty seals are incorporated in water-based cylinders to ensure proper lubrication, prevent leaking, and material compatibility.

Operating Temperatures – Additives such as propylene glycol to the water can depress the freezing point without sacrificing the environmental compatibility of the water. This can be valuable for utility applications such as refuse collection trucks.

At RAM Industries, we always work with your team to clearly understand your fit and performance requirements. This custom approach allows us to design and build cylinders specific to your equipment.

Contact the RAM team to learn more water-based hydraulic cylinders today!



Cylinder Material Selection Made Easy!

posted by RAM Industries Inc.    |   June 20, 2022 08:00

Cylinder Material Selection Made Easy

Mirror, mirror on the wall, what are the best hydraulic cylinder materials of them all?

While we don’t have a magic mirror at RAM Industries, we have a very experienced engineering team that knows that the answer is specific to your equipment’s technical and performance requirements, as well as the operating temperatures and environment.

Building relationships is essential to RAM’s approach to cylinder design and production. We work with your team's experts to establish the final application's precise requirements and operational expectations. Having clear and detailed requirements helps us recommend the ideal materials for your hydraulic cylinders, ensuring optimal performance.

Mounts - Matching the cylinder mount to your OEM equipment will ensure longevity and prevent failure. Mounts are composed of materials like high-tensile steel, carbon steel and ductile iron, depending on the application.

Shafts - Considerations used in shaft selection include speed, displacement requirements, retraction force, loads, and corrosion resistance. Options available in cylinder shaft design are chrome plated, chrome-over stainless, nitrided, chrome over nickel, and other high-strength material selections.

Barrels – Adjusting barrel materials and thickness ensures they perform under expected force and pressure requirements. Standard barrel material is high tensile SAE C1026 or St52.3 cold drawn tube precision honed for extended seal life. Other material options include 4140, aluminum, and stainless steel.

Pistons & Glands – The design and style of pistons and glands are impacted by the design, as well as loading and pressure requirements. Common materials used are high-strength steel, ductile iron, carbon steel, stainless steel, and aluminum.

Seals – Pressure characteristics, durability, and operating or environmental temperatures help influence the size and type of seals incorporated. Materials include high-performance polyurethane, nitrile rubber, fluoro rubber, ethylene propylene diene, silicone, resin bonded fabric composite or polyester elastomer.

Paint – RAM’s durable standard paint finish is 2-part urethane; however, high solid epoxy and primer epoxy are available for additional corrosion protection. Zinc chromate and clear dichromate electro-galvanized plating are also available.

RAM Industries stands behind the high quality of our hydraulic cylinders. Mill certifications verify all materials used, and our Engineering team ensures the grades of steel used are selected to match the application of the finished product.


You are the experts in what you need for your hydraulic cylinders, and we are the experts in getting you there.

Contact RAM today!



Confidence Under Pressure

posted by RAM Industries Inc.    |   April 29, 2022 08:05

Confidence Under Pressure

Are you confident your cylinders are sufficient for the hydraulic pressure rating of your equipment? Off-the-shelf cylinders are typically designed to industry standards, but they cannot anticipate the operating conditions of all equipment. All internal componentry and critical points in your cylinder will face significant pressure. By working with our team, you can be confident your RAM hydraulic cylinders will perform reliably under pressure every time!

PSI, which stands for pounds per square inch, indicates the pressure rating for the hydraulic system. To calculate the pressure rating, you need to divide the force by the total surface area to get the system pressure.

The industry standard for pressure ratings has evolved over the years to 3000 PSI, although each industry and application may vary. RAM Industries designs and builds cylinders to match your particular equipment's pressure rating. RAM can manufacture cylinders with a rating up to 7500 PSI.

All components in the hydraulic system must be rated to the same PSI or higher. For a cylinder to be rated as 3000 PSI, all integrated parts and materials must also be at least 3000 PSI. For example, an integrated 2500 PSI counterbalance valve would not work for a cylinder to be 3000 PSI rated.

Communication is a valuable part of the relationship RAM builds with customers. Letting us know your desired system pressure and pounds of force, or your preferred bore size, helps our team provide a suitable solution for your machinery. The experts at RAM review every aspect of your hydraulic cylinder design to verify your cylinders will achieve optimal performance. As part of our full-service approach, the RAM team provides recommendations considering your equipment's operating environment to ensure safe and efficient operation.

RAM creates a design plan with the criteria and componentry for each cylinder we make. A standard template of engineering calculations takes all criteria from the design plan and performs safety calculations for all critical points in the cylinder. This template provides output with the safety factor as a percentage of equivalent force. Ensuring your cylinders meet the required safety rating is essential, especially where human safety is directly involved.

At RAM, we test every hydraulic cylinder at a higher pressure than the designated PSI to ensure reliable performance during pressure surges or spikes. Static systems may experience constant pressure, unlike dynamic systems with fluctuations or shocks to the equipment. Customers may request testing at higher ratings, such as one and a half times the operating pressure. We make sure all internal components match the test pressure so your cylinders can withstand the pressure on the field.

With half a century of experience, rely on the RAM name to manufacture hydraulic cylinders you can trust!

Contact RAM today for cylinder solutions that work under pressure!




Large Bore Cylinders for Your Largest Loads

posted by RAM Industries Inc.    |   April 29, 2022 08:00

Large Bores for Your Largest Loads

Large bore cylinders can achieve the power and pressure required for your equipment to move the heaviest loads. These heavy-duty cylinders are robust and often necessary for machinery that operates in tough working environments. With bore sizes over 8 inches and up to 24 inches, RAM’s large bore cylinders are up to the task!

The bore size, along with the desired operating pressure of the cylinder determines the force output available. The bigger the bore, more force the cylinder can develop. Knowing the load your application needs to move, and the hydraulic system pressure rating, will help determine the optimal bore size of your cylinders.

We are well-versed in the latest technologies in materials, cylinder componentry, cylinder design and manufacturing methods to ensure your cylinder functions exactly as required. These RAM large bore cylinders are custom designed and built to accommodate rough and rugged work environments and frequently need bolted construction to maintain cylinder integrity under heavy loads.

With the increased cylinder size, the experts at RAM take every precaution to recommend internal componentry that will meet the performance requirements and the external operating conditions. Our priority is developing complete cylinder solutions that produce quality performance.

Customized options include:

  • High strength materials such as 4140, QT100, AR (Abrasion Resistant) and other high yield strength carbon and alloy steels
  • Increased shaft protection through induction hardened rods, thicker chrome, chrome over nickel and other material alternatives
  • Leading edge large bore seal technologies for heavy duty use, high wear environments, and abrasion resistance
  • Expanded seal sets to resist shock pressures
  • Bellows for external shaft protection
  • External guards for ports, hoses and oil lines
  • Bolt in glands for added strength
  • Hardened pins for added durability
  • High pressure ports (SAE Code 61/62 4 bolt flange designs)
  • Integrated valves (relief, counterbalance or PO check) to protect the cylinder, maintain position, and control the rate of extension and retraction to counteract external forces.

RAM’s modern facilities utilize large capacity cranes and specialized equipment capable of accommodating the weight and scale of the materials used to manufacture these cylinders.

When it comes to OEM equipment with heavy-duty load requirements, trust the experts at RAM Industries to develop cylinder solutions that will perform under pressure.

Contact RAM Today!




posted by RAM Industries Inc.    |   March 31, 2022 08:05

Endless Stroke Lengths

Whatever stroke length you require, RAM’s cylinder stroke options are endless! RAM Industries produces hydraulic cylinders with lengths that meet your precise needs, from extremely long to very short.

The difference between when a cylinder is fully open (extended) and in home position (retracted) is the stroke length. When determining the stroke required for your equipment, it’s important determine the max retracted center to center distance for your application. That will help identify if you have enough room to get the movement needed to get to the required extended length.

Many industries benefit from the length hydraulic cylinders can support. Some examples of equipment applications that utilize longer cylinders include axle moving cylinders in transportation, scoping cylinders, pump jacks or dog houses in oil & gas, and deploying slides on camper trailers.

Once you define the stroke required, consider the bore size to ensure the proper combination. This combination defines how far the cylinder moves and how much force it can produce. Cylinders with a bore size greater than 9 inches can support lengths up to 130 inches. If the bore size is over 20 inches, the stroke length is limited to 14 inches.

Designing your cylinder to precise stroke measurements helps reduce potential issues, such as:

  • Stroke length lengths too long? Overtravel can cause interference with other components.
  • Stroke lengths too short? Equipment can’t produce the required movement.
  • Improper bore-stroke combination? Force production can be inadequate.

When there are restrictions on the closed length, RAM’s Telescopic and Piggy-back cylinder designs can help meet your needs to achieve the stroke required with a compact retracted length.

As a custom manufacturer, RAM establishes a close technical rapport with every client to share ideas and gather information regarding cylinder fit and performance requirements.

Custom cylinders allow you to define the necessary stroke value. RAM Industries ensures the cylinder design is specific to your movement requirements to provide reliable force and control.

In addition to the stroke, RAM always considers the working environment, seal selection, and material recommendations to ensure your hydraulic cylinders perform to your quality standards.

Contact the team at RAM to discuss your stroke requirements today!




posted by RAM Industries Inc.    |   March 31, 2022 08:00

Designed To Stabilize

Making your equipment secure and level in any environment is critical when the center of gravity of the combined load and vehicle is outside the support base of the vehicle. These versatile levelling cylinders are used in various applications in transportation, oil & gas, and aggregate industries, including mobile cranes, communication towers, service trucks, aerial trucks, drilling rigs, crushers, screen decks, and conveyors. RAM's Stabilizer cylinders can help distribute a load's weight, increase the lifting capacity, ensure safety, and provide fast, reliable operation.

RAM Stabilizer cylinders enable quick deployment and are easy to modify after placement. These unique cylinders provide infinite adjustments to the finished height over the full range of the stroke. Instead of a pin, a threaded engagement locks the stabilizer in place. Utilizing RAM mechanical or hydraulic locking stabilizer cylinders ensures that your equipment will perform safely and reliably.

RAM's designs focus on two primary mechanical locking methods, split or locking nut designs. These positive locking features provide assurance there will be no creeping from the desired settings.

  • A split locking nut design features an external split ring mechanism easily removed and replaced to lock the Stabilizer in position once deployed.
  • A solid locking nut design is fixed to the equipment and is rotated to lock the Stabilizer in position.
  • Hydraulic locking can be incorporated with hydraulic valves such as PO check, counterbalancing and thermal relief valves. 

Standard designs feature cross-pin and ball ends.

  • Cross-pin ends provide quick and easy functionality with some ability to pivot.
  • Ball ends are a unique design that provides 360-degree stability with angular interaction with the ground to match any slope.
  • Custom jacking pads or feet ensure the cylinders will stabilize your equipment precisely as needed.

RAM designs can easily incorporate many mounting options from hole patterns and sizes to positions such as side, top, pass-through, and flange mounts. Custom mounting offers placement flexibility specific to your equipment design.

RAM’s success has been built on the extensive engineering expertise and manufacturing capabilities we offer OEM customers. Our team implements high standards to produce dependable, high-quality cylinders. RAM puts quality at the core of what we do to ensure your stabilizing cylinders will provide long-lasting performance.

Contact the RAM team to configure a stabilizing cylinder solution today!