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Dovetail Optical Rails
Counterbored 1/4" (M6)
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RC1 and RC3 rail carriers and a DT12 miniature dovetail stage mounted on a dovetail rail.
Thorlabs' RLA Optical Rails are our smallest option for building stable, rigid mechanical assemblies. They consist of extruded lengths of aluminum with a dovetail mounting surface that accommodates our snap-on rail carriers. Objects are easily slid along this dovetail before being secured. These rails measure only 0.75" (19.1 mm) wide and are available from stock in lengths ranging from 3" - 24" (metric lengths: 75 - 600 mm).
These dovetail rails offer numerous 1/4" (M6) counterbored holes for mounting flexibility. The end of each rail is 8-32 (M4) tapped for vertical mounting. Rails 12" (300 mm) and longer offer mounting slots to provide additional mounting options. As shown in the image at the top of the page, the rails are laser engraved with graduations every 1.0 mm and labels every 10.0 mm for precise placement of optomechanical hardware.
Thorlabs' product family for RLA dovetail rails includes our snap-on carriers as well as mounting accessories. Together with spacer sets and table clamps that allow the rails to be mounted both horizontally and vertically, these tools provide a complete family of rigid, versatile buliding blocks suited for virtually any optomechanical setup.
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A cross-sectional view of the dovetail rails.
Our Dovetail Optical Rails are designed for the construction of stable one-dimensional assemblies. Objects can be secured in place anywhere along the dovetail mounting surface. The rail ends are tapped with 8-32 (M4 x 0.7) holes for compatibility with standard optomechanics.
These rails are offered from stock in lengths ranging from 3" to 24" (75 mm to 600 mm). They have engraved graduations every 1.0 mm and labels every 10.0 mm. These rails can easily be clamped to an optical table or breadboard using our CL6 table clamps, and are extremely compact.