Baumer cable transducers


Baumer cable transducers review imageBaumer cable transducers are devices for linear distance measurement with a special wire draw mechanism.


  1. Wire draw transducers working principle
  2. Baumer wire draw sensors advantages
  3. Baumer cables transducer series
  4. Cable transducers for outdoor use
  5. Transducers with modular system

Wire draw transducers working principle

Cable transducers are created to measure target object movements at long distances using a reel with special cable. These units are perfect solution for difficult installation conditions. They have a high margin of safety and don`t require much maintenance even in harsh conditions.

The design of such system consists of several basic details:Wire draw transducers working principle

  • Rope
  • Reel
  • Measuring sensor

Rope is a very flexible steel cable that is a key element of the entire system. The end of the cable is attached to the measurement target surface. The cable is reel up to the drum.

Reel is a drum that is attached to the housing of the sensor. It’s look like a fishing reel. When the distance between the sensor and the target changes, the cable is pulled out of the drum.

Measuring sensor determines the distance that the cable is pulled and converts it into a special signal. That signal can be standard (measured in V or A), incremental (TTL, HTL) or digital absolute (CANopen, SSI). It depends on the type of connected sensor. The most often, encoders and potentiometers are used as such measuring sensors.

The device is limited only in cable length. Therefore, it may work over very long distances (50 - 50000 m). Its simplicity and versatility provides long life and at the same time good linearity of measurement.

Baumer wire draw sensors advantages

The German company produces both OEM and retrofit cable transducers. The manufacturer is constantly upgrading its products to solve the growing requirements of the modern industry.

The baumer cable sensors have the following advantages:Three-chamber principle system photo

  • Compact design
  • Three-chamber principle
  • Robust stainless steel rope
  • Wide models range
  • Versatile accessories
  • The highest linearity

Compact design. All products of presented category have compact and durable design. The manufacturer produces sensors with flat, light and special shock resistant housings. It can be made from plastic (MAGRES BMMS and GCA5) or metal (GCI and GCA series) materials.

Three-chamber principle design are created specifically for harsh environments. All chambers are completely isolated from each other. This feature ensures high protection for both the electronics and the spring mechanism. The GSA5, GCA8 and GCA 12 series have this option in their design. That is why they are ideal for outdoor use.

Robust stainless steel rope is a special corrosion-resistant wire with an additional nylon or polyamide coating. Its diameter varies from 0.5 to 1.2 mm, depending on the model. The cable is connected to the object using a carabiner or ring (eyelet). The spring in the structure is protected from the rust. Additional integrated dirt skimmer protects the device from sand and dirt (it’s not available in all products).

Accessories for cable transducersWide models range contains both sensors with a magnetic operation principle for greater reliability and optical sensors for a greater accuracy. Equipment may work with redundant sensing and signal output, including SSI, CANopen, J1939 and also with incremental HTL and TTL signals. Such units have dimensions from 60 to 200 mm and operate at distance of 1.5 to 50 m.

Versatile accessories make the entire system more flexible. Via to special pulleys (with max. angle 180 °), the devices can take measurements in hard-to-reach areas. The manufacturer produces cable extensions that increase the standard measurement distance. In addition, the company also manufactures a mounting angle to reduce installation difficulty.

The highest linearity is achieved through ultra-high resolution of optical encoders and reliable controlled cable fixation. Linearity is maintained over the entire measuring distance and reaches 0.01% in products with flexible modular systems.

Baumer cables transducer series

Baumer Company has a wide portfolio of draw wire transducers. Three main types are available, depending on the connected sensors:

  1. GCI (with incremental encoder)
  2. GCA (with absolute encoder)
  3. Series with potentiometric sensing

The manufacturer divides them into two main groups. Let's look at them in detail.

Cable transducers for outdoor use

dirt skimmer imageThis category includes units that are optimally suited for outdoor use. They have robust design with high safety level.

This type includes the following series:

  • GCA3
  • GCA5
  • GCA8
  • GCA12
  • GCA20
  • BMMS K34 / K50

GCA3 is a series of contactless magnetic transducers with a measurement length up to 4.7 m. This model has a three-chamber design and additional dirt skimmer.

GCA5 is a type of sensors with non-contact magnetic sensing. The device has a maximum working range up to 7.8 m. Three-chamber structure and dirt / dust skimmer adds extra reliability to the assembly.

GCA8 is a series of sensors with a potentiometric sensing method and with max measuring length of 8 m. This model has integrated redundant inclination sensor.

GCA12 is a sensor with potentiometric sensing and maximum working length up to 12 m. As the previous series, devices have a built-in inclination sensor.

GCA20 has measuring length up to 20 m and working principle based on potentiometric sensing. Its body is made of aluminum. Such series have single compact inclination sensor for measure length and angle simultaneously.

BMMS K34 / K50 has wear-free non-contact magnetic position sensing with MAGRES encoders.

Transducers with modular system

This is a series of products with a robust housing for accurate measurements. They work with optical encoders, which provide excellent accuracy and linearity of the results.

The following interfaces are available for working with absolute signals:Baumer gci15/gsa15 series

  • SSI / BiSS-C
  • CANopen® / DeviceNet
  • Profibus-DP / Profinet
  • EtherCAT / EtherNet/IP
  • Powerlink / SAE J1939

In addition, the following output stage for incremental signals are available: TTL/RS422 and HTL/push-pull.

Baumer transducers with modular system are concluding the next series:

  • GCI2/GCA2
  • GCI4/GCA4
  • GCI15/GCA15
  • GCI50/GCA50

GCI 2 / GCA 2 is a series with a measurement length of 2.4 m. The cable connects with the object surface using a snap hook. Cable pull is made from plastic and encoder housing is made from aluminum.

GCI 4 / GCA 4 has a measuring range up to 3 m. It is attached to the measurement object via thread with eyelet. Products use rope from stainless steel (sheathed) and cable pull from aluminum. Its housing is made from aluminum too.

GCI15 / GCA15 is a cable sensor with a measuring length of 5 m (with a thread cable end). Models with eyelet have measuring ranges of 5, 7.5, 10 and 15 m. Both cable pull and encoder housing are made from aluminum.

GCI50 / GCA50 is series with the largest measuring range in the category. The company produces models with a maximum distance of 30, 40 and 50 m. It has full metal housing.

Conclusion: Baumer cable encoders will be a great solution when you need fast and reliable measurement in hard to reach places. Due to a wide products family, the customer will be able to find the model even for usage in very uncommon difficult cases. Such sensors will optimally work in harsh conditions and outdoors, via its robust and long life design.

On our website, you can buy baumer cable transducers and encoders at the best price. To find out the availability in the warehouse and delivery conditions to your region, please contact our managers!