Which conveyor rollers do i need

Choosing the right roller conveyor for your business


When investing in a new roller conveyor, it’s important to be confident in the style, size and material required.

Your business will benefit from having appropriate roller conveyors for the job at hand, as materials handling will be more efficient, and safer and have fewer handling errors.

Choosing the right roller conveyors can be complex, with so many options available, so we’ve compiled this guide to help find the best roller conveyors for your needs.

What are roller conveyors?

Roller conveyors are a conveyor that uses cylindrical rollers, mounted on axles, to carry payloads from one point to another by rolling.

They can be powered, with a chain connecting sections of rollers and a motor to drive them, or they can have free-spinning rollers.

The latter is known as a gravity roller conveyor, because the payload skates over the surface of the rollers thanks to a slight gradient, propelled by the force of gravity.

Both kinds of roller conveyors are used widely in many industries.

Choosing the right roller conveyor for your business

large range of powered and gravity roller conveyors

Whether you’re looking for roller conveyors for manufacturing, warehousing or logistics, the best type of roller conveyor for your application will depend on the type of load you want to convey.

This impacts the pitch (the distance between the rollers), roller size, and roller conveyor frame.

Load type and accumulation

Roller conveyors with a wide pitch and skate-wheel conveyors are best suited for loads with a flat base, such as a box, carton or tote.

For small parts the rollers should be placed at a tight pitch to ensure items don’t fall through.

Which conveyor rollers do i need?

There are many options when it comes to conveyor rollers, from different lengths, sizes and weight capacities. Just as with the frame, the different types of rollers for your conveyor are suited to different applications.

Roller materials

Conveyor rollers can be made from high-impact PVC, Polypropylene, steel or stainless steel. They can have zinc plating or rubber coverings, depending on what best meets your needs.
The most popular option is rollers made from steel and plastic.

Plastic rollers in high-impact PVC are good for general use, as they’re durable, water-resistant and heat-resistant. Food-quality hygienic rollers can be manufactured from plastic.

While both stainless steel and PVC conveyor rollers are corrosion-resistant, PVC is often more cost-effective, lighter in weight, and easy to cut to the desired length.

The materials for your bearings are also a consideration, as this is the part which ensures the rollers can spin without much inertia.

Bearings should be strong and durable and can be made from mild steel, stainless steel or PVC.

Roller width and pitch

The size and pitch of the rollers you choose for your conveyor also depend on the size and shape of the load you are moving.

For example, a hard, flat-based load, such as a box, carton or tote, usually requires at least 3 rollers underneath at one time to convey smoothly, so if your totes are 30cm in length, the conveyor should have at least 1 roller per 10 cm.

The pitch should be moderated to accommodate different types of items. If you are conveying small items, you will need rollers positioned closer together.

Conveyor Rollers are available in various diameters, from 20mm diameter to 80mm in diameter.

The strength of the roller is proportional to the diameter and bearing types; heavier items require more robust rollers to withstand the impact generated upon loading.

At OCON, our conveyor rollers have weight capacities ranging from 3-650kg, so you can be sure to find the right option for your needs.

Powered or gravity conveyor?

Which conveyor rollers do i need

Roller conveyors are available in powered, belt-driven models or as unpowered gravity conveyor models. Powered roller conveyors are available in many forms often supplied with a grooved rollers for the drive belts to link them together.

Choosing a powered roller conveyor has benefits in that items travel at a consistent, controlled speed, and operators can run different sections of the conveyor at once.

A heavy-duty option, for pallets or heavy, flat-based products, uses a direct chain drive to power each roller, reducing the risk of roller slippage.

Gravity conveyors need no power source or motors and are such an energy-efficient and cost-effective option.

They use only the gravitational potential energy of the load to carry it along. With accessories such as end stops and speed restricting rollers, you can control the flow of items along the conveyor system.

Other conveyors to consider

Another type of conveyor is the skate-wheel conveyor, which works on the same principles as the gravity roller conveyor.

Skatewheels have multiple wheels on each axle, making them lightweight and affordable. These require the least amount of slope to start a box moving and can convey goods around tighter curves than a standard roller conveyor is able.

They are also easy to manufacture in flexible, concertina designs so that you can position a temporary conveyor as needed. However, skate wheel conveyors are not well suited to heavy loads, bags or drums.

Final thoughts on choosing roller conveyors


At OCON we provide a large range of powered and gravity roller conveyors, for almost any application.

With over forty years of experience supplying versatile, custom conveyors to businesses in every industry, we’ve developed enough options that there are innumerable combinations available, whether you want a flexible, stainless steel roller conveyor or a static, powered conveyor with PVC rollers.

Feel free to browse our gravity roller conveyor models, powered roller conveyors and different conveyor roller options we have available, or give us a call to discuss custom roller conveyors for your business.

We’re always happy to advise you and answer any queries you may have, so call on 01922 452 333 or email us at enquiries@ocon.co.uk.

The benefits of a conveyor system for packaging

The benefits of a conveyor system for packaging

The benefits of a conveyor system for packaging

What is a packaging conveyor system?

Looking to streamline your manufacturing or processing facility? You’ll need the right conveyor system to ensure the goods you proudly put your name to are packaged to perfection.

The picking and packing processes are integral to the way many facilities do business. Both stages have to be finely tuned and expertly handled to ensure the efficiency, product quality and accuracy brands need to succeed as a whole.

Here at Ocon Conveyors, we design, manufacture and supply a wide range of conveyor systems to meet your exacting needs as well as cater to the demands of your own customer base.

A packing conveyor system is exactly that – made up of mechanical devices that utilises conveyors to transport various products for packaging. Using a simple yet sophisticated setup that contains a series of conveyor products, including belt conveyors, powered roller conveyors, gravity roller conveyors and rotary turntables.

A conveyor packaging system ensures the perfect solution for the end of your assembly or production line.

Why do you need a conveyor system for packaging?

Investing in a packing conveyor is the right next step for organisations serving countless industry sectors.

From warehouses and manufacturing facilities to food processing plants and medical supply services, how goods are packaged before they are moved onto clients and/or the end customer is essential.

Ensuring workstations have a steady and constant stream of items to be picked and packed is therefore crucial to the supply chain.

Our conveyors are designed and developed for this very process, and use the right contract packing conveyor alongside a range of accessories (including side tables, extendable side surfaces and rotary turntables) to give human workers the equipped space they need to save time when packaging goods or materials for despatch.

The benefits of a conveyor system for packaging:

belting materials

For an automated solution that gets your goods from A to B for packing, our range of conveyor systems unlock several advantages.

Whether you’re packaging food, pharmaceutical products or general items, the bespoke packaging conveyors we specialise in will provide a system that works for your budget and your business.

Those investing in a conveyors for packing can look forward to the following benefits:

Better workflow for employees

There’s nothing more disruptive than an inconsistent workflow, and it’ll have a negative impact on how your workers perform. Give your workers the best chance of success by providing a packing conveyor system that works for them. The packing conveyors we design, build and install are developed with your workers in mind.

How, and the rate in which, goods are fed through the system can be adapted to your exact needs to ensure a seamless operation, whatever production output you are looking to achieve.

Increased productivity

With improved workflow also comes increased productivity. By automating the movement of products throughout the packaging process with the addition of a packing conveyor system, product handling can be improved to minimise damage, errors and loss. All this will enhance your outfit’s operational efficiency and speed.

Your workers and wider operational efficiency will also benefit from the reduction of heavy moving equipment use.

Our contract packing solutions ensure limited interaction with equipment like forklifts and pallet jacks, and the saving of time and resources.

Variable speeds

Many of our contract packing conveyor systems come fully equipped with variable speed controls, giving you the power to adjust feed rates to your specific requirements.

The variable speed of belts and rollers make periods of increased or reduced demand easier to handle.

Line starvation and product accumulation can also be prevented, with goods able to be processed at a speed that suits your facility and your workers.

Ergonomic design

The ergonomic design of our contract packing solutions ensure many rewards can be reaped by the facilities we assist, their workers and their customers.

By introducing a more ergonomic way of working, your warehouse or factory can make significant cost savings (especially when it comes to labour and workplace safety), improve productivity, boost product and service quality, enhance employee engagement, and create a better, safer company culture.

Keeps work area tidy and organised

Keeping the work area as tidy and organised as possible is a priority across all industry sectors.

As well as ensuring better health and safety, a tidy work area encourages productivity and precision.

By finetuning your contract packing setup with the addition of a packaging conveyor, you can reconfigure your production line with the right options and accessories.

By making your workstations fit for purpose with our packing conveyor systems, your industrial setting can become a safer, productive and more pleasant place to work.

What type of conveyors are most suitable for packaging?

What are the different types of flexible conveyor systems?

The joy of our contract packing conveyor systems is that they can be designed, manufactured and integrated with your exact needs in mind.

With this, packing lines incorporate a wide range of conveyor systems and accessories to ensure an efficient, profitable and reliable setup.

Contract packing conveyor systems can implement grading conveyors, inspection conveyors, metering conveyors, inline metal detection, multi-head weighers, hoppers and buffers, storage vessels, and tippers to ensure an automated solution that delivers on all fronts.

Why choose OCON Conveyors for your business?

For packaging conveyor systems that help you save space, increase efficiency, lower manual handling, boost running time and lower safety risk, choose Ocon Conveyors as your conveyor packaging line supplier.

Our specialists have decades of experience introducing packing conveyors to new and established operations, and do so to ensure optimum return on investment for our industrial clients. We’re also here for you long after your packing conveyor line has been installed.

We provide servicing, maintenance, repairs and spare parts to keep your contract packing solution moving. Find out more about the customised packaging conveyor systems we make possible by contacting our team today.


Material Handling Conveyor Systems Manufacturing

What is a material handling conveyor system?

Material Handling Conveyor Systems Manufacturing

What is a material handling conveyor system?

Material handling conveyor systems are integral to many large- and small-scale operations. Using belted and roller designs, material handling equipment conveyors can effectively transport goods and products of all sizes and specifications to get materials exactly where they need to be.

The material handling conveyor can be implemented at various stages of the manufacturing process, including the production, assembly, inspection, loading and unloading, and packing phases of the operation.

A conveyor belt for material handling generally uses a continuous belt, which is extended in a loop between two pulleys. Further support is provided by metal slider pans (suitable for the conveying of lightweight materials) or rollers. Material handling equipment conveyor systems are powered by electric motors, with their operation able to be customised using constant or variable speed reduction gears.

The belts themselves can be constructed using a variety of belting materials, with everything from rubber and plastic to metal, fabric and leather used to ensure the smooth or textured surface that can safely and speedily transport goods of all types. Belting materials are also available in varying thicknesses, with bulky or heavy goods requiring thicker, more durable belting materials for conveying. Troughed designs deliver another great feature that guarantees the smooth, secure transit of bulky, heavy or loose materials.

Why do you need a conveyor system for material handling?

The Different Types of Flexible Conveyors

The transportation of any material across your facility should be handled with care, that’s where our material handling conveyor systems come in. Your material handling conveyor, and the belting materials used to construct it, can be customised to your exacting needs, as well as accessorised with ancillary equipment to improve throughput and efficiency.

The benefits of a material handling conveyor system:

There are many benefits to introducing or incorporating a conveyor belt for material handling into your industrial setting. These include but are not limited to the following:

Reduce manual handling aspects

Here at Ocon Conveyors, we understand that the safety of your staff is important. Many manual handling roles include the completion of menial, dirty or even dangerous tasks. But with the installation of a material handling conveyor, you can reduce the manual handling aspects of these positions.

With repetitive movements automated, your staff will find greater job satisfaction, with some operatives even able to be reallocated to value-added jobs and/or tasks to enhance your business as a whole. Safety is another factor that will be dramatically improved via the integration of material handling equipment conveyor systems.

Lower operational costs

Keep your operational costs low, whatever the latest industry trends or consumer demands brings, by using a conveyor belt for material handling. Seasonal peaks and periods requiring increased production output can be handled with ease and without adding to staff numbers by relying on this automated solution.

Reduce personnel MHE movements

Thanks to the use of a material handling conveyor, your facility can keep operations as ergonomic as they should be. These improvements will lead to reduced personnel MHE movements and the manual carrying/transportation of goods to keep workers happy, production on track, and product quality high.

Improving production output

A material handling equipment conveyor doesn’t just keep operations running smoothly. Products or materials can be transported with precision at speed to improve production output as a whole. Seasonal demands can also be catered for without increasing costs company-wide. With improved production output, you’ll be better positioned to hit targets and cater to the requirements of your own customer base.

The minimal maintenance required to keep production flowing will also decrease disruptive downtime to improve the entire efficiency of your operation.

Elevation to high level for increased production space/access

Making every inch of your facility work for you is crucial, whatever industry sector you serve. With selected material handling conveyor systems, you can maximise not just floor space but elevate your operation to a higher level. Many material handling equipment conveyor systems can be used vertically or around corners to ensure increased production space and easy, uninhibited access.

Increased efficiencies and accuracies

With a conveyor belt for material handling, your facility can look forward to a long list of increased efficiencies and accuracies at every level. The automation of repetitive movements and reduced personnel walking will keep operations efficient and ergonomic. The intelligent, safe transportation of products means less risk, damage and loss.

Material handling conveyor systems can be integrated seamlessly to ensure fewer disruptions when enhancing the infrastructure you need to support your operation. Modular material handling equipment conveyor systems can also be incorporated to support workstations and specific processes as and when it’s needed.

What type of conveyors are most suitable for material handling?

What are the different types of flexible conveyor systems?

There are many different types of conveyors that can be called upon to improve how you process, handle and transport materials. Belt conveyors, roller, overhead, modular plastic, gravity, and extendable and flexible material handling conveyor systems can all be integrated to ensure a process that gets goods of all sizes, shapes and weights from A to B. Material handling equipment conveyor systems can also be tailored to suit the specific layout of your facility to guarantee improved efficiency and productivity for your organisation, even when processing a high volume of goods.

Why choose ocon conveyors for your business?

If you are looking for a conveyor belt for material handling, then look no further than Ocon Conveyors. We’ve been manufacturing conveyors, including material handling conveyor systems, for more than 40 years. Our dedicated team has the expertise to design, build, deliver and install the systems you need to handle materials safely, succinctly and seamlessly. We also provide assistance with servicing, repairs, installation and spare parts to ensure your conveyor system for material handling delivers for the long term. Our automated solutions are already relied on by countless industries, including the logistics, warehousing, retail and ecommerce sectors.

Our material handling equipment conveyor systems deliver on cost effectiveness and reliability to ensure the ultimate solution for your facility, your budget, and your production output requirements. Explore our range of material handling conveyor systems or get in touch with our team to discuss your needs.