The Complete Guide to Chain

1.3.1 LAMBDA® Roller Chain

Transmission and conveyor: Lube-free type, drive transmission

Application Example

LAMBDA Roller Chains do not require additional lubrication. This makes them ideal for "clean" applications like final assembly areas, paper production, and other operations where lubrication could affect the product on line. LAMBDA Roller Chains are available in drive or conveyor styles. (See Figure 1.7.)

Figure 1.7 LAMBDA Lube-Free Chain
Figure 1.7 LAMBDA® Lube-Free Chain

Construction and Features

LAMBDA Roller Chains are designed for long wear life without additional lubrication. The bushings are made of oil-impregnated sintered metal, and the pins are specially coated. LAMBDA Roller Chains also have rollers, which make them different from other lube-free chains. (The SL series, for example, does not have rollers.)

The features of LAMBDA Roller Chains are as follows:

  1. LAMBDA Roller Chains outlast Standard Roller Chains without lubrication up to 30 times longer at low speed (about 25 m/min.) and seven times longer at medium speed (about 127 m/min.). (See Figure 1.8.)

Figure 1.8 comparison of LAMBDA Chains and Other Chains
Figure 1.8 comparison of LAMBDA® Chains and Other Chains

  1. The rollers on LAMBDA® Roller Chain engage the sprocket more smoothly, reducing power loss.
  2. LAMBDA Roller Chains have the same transmission capacity as equivalently sized ANSI Roller Chains at speeds of 150 m/min. or less.
  3. Because additional lubrication is not required, LAMBDA Roller Chains help prevent contamination of equipment and conveyed objects. This promotes a clean working environment.
  4. LAMBDA Roller Chains are designed to operate in temperatures from −10°C to 60°C.


Single strands of LAMBDA Roller Chain run on standard sprockets. Multiple strand chains require special sprockets that have a wider transverse pitch.

Selection and Handling

  1. Drive LAMBDA Roller Chains have thicker roller link plates than RS Roller Chains. The chains are also wider. Check to make sure that the wider chains will run correctly on your equipment.
  2. When the chain is used in a dusty environment, the dust will absorb the lubrication oil in the bushings, and the bushings may wear in a short time. If conditions are dusty, test the chain in the environment.
  3. If LAMBDA Roller Chain is used in water, the chain will wear faster.
  4. When the lubricating oil contained in the bushing is depleted, the chain should be replaced.

Application Series

  1. Nickel-plated LAMBDA Roller Chain is available for higher corrosion resistance.
  2. LAMBDA II lasts twice as long as LAMBDA in temperatures up to 150°C.