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Distance measuring system integrated into the MINISLIDE micro frictionless table

The MSQscale is based on our tried-and-tested MINISLIDE MSQ guideways and is available for our entire product range.

This extraordinary innovation combines guiding and measuring functions in a highly integrated design. MSQscale makes the most compact applications possible and significantly simplifies assembly and installation. As a result, the MSQscale is an extremely economical solution which meets stringent technical requirements.

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MSQscale working method and components

The MSQscale is an optical, incremental measuring system made up of the MINISLIDE MSQ guide system and the following additional components:

A    Dimensional scale on the guide rail
B    Optical sensor integrated into the carriage
C    Flexible print (must not be exposed to dynamic loads)
D    Interface module

The high-precision dimensional scale is part of the hardened guideway's surface. The sensor records the optical signals and supplies the raw signals. These are produced in the interface module in either analogue or digital format, and can be processed by the customer.


There are four structural types of interface modules available:

With housing with D-Sub 9 connector

Without housing with Micro Match connector

Without housing with D-Sub 9 connector

Without housing Without connector With soldered connections

A flexible flat ribbon cable (flat flex cable, or FFC) can be used between the flexible print and the interface module if the flexible print for the sensor is too short in the application. This will enable the interface module to be positioned in a flexible way. These cables can be exposed to dynamic loads.

FFC cables are available in three lengths: 250 mm, 400 mm and 600 mm.


SCHNEEBERGER linear bearings - limited quantity, easy ordering, quick delivery

System lengths in mm: Strokes in mm
MSQscale 730 – 7020 – 58
MSQscale 940 – 8034 – 66
MSQscale 1250 – 10045 – 70
MSQscale 1570 – 130 66 – 102

Performance parameters:

Resolution (4)TTL output 0.1 μm (optional: 1 μm / 10 μm)
Accuracy (4)+/- 3 μm
Repeatability (4)Unidirectional +/- 0.1 μm
Bidirectional +/- 0.2 μm
Dimensional scalePitch 100 μm
Coefficient of expansion 11.7 x 10-6 K-1
PreloadZero backlash
     Guideways, carriages, ballsStainless steel, through-hardened
     Cage and pinionPEEK
     End piecesPEEK
Max. acceleration300 m/s2
Max. speed3 m/s
Areas of application:      
     Temperature range (1)-40 °C to +80 °C (-40 °F to +176 °F)
     Vacuum (2)High vacuum (max. 10-7 mbar)
     Humidity10 % – 70 % (non-condensing)
     CleanroomCleanroom class ISO 7 (in accordance with ISO 14644-1)
Supply voltage5 V DC +/- 5 %
Current consumption60 mA (analog) / 70 mA (digital)
Output signalAnalog: 1 Vss (at 100 Ω)
Digital: TTL in accordance with RS 422 standard
Source formatAnalogue: Differential sin/cos analogue signals with reference pulse
Digital: Differential, interpolated digital signals (A, B, R)
The reference signal is synchronized with the incremental signals



(1) The standard lubrication covers a temperature range from -20 °C to +80 °C. Lubricants for other temperatures are available upon request from Schneeberger.

(2) The suitability for a vacuum depends on the materials used. In order to use MSQscale in a vacuum, the front plates must be removed. There are also restrictions on the use of sensor accessories. Use in a vacuum requires a special lubricant available from SCHNEEBERGER. Please get in touch with your SCHNEEBERGER contact person for details on vacuum application.

(3) Note the high signal frequencies at high resolution and high speed.

(4) The values apply at 20 °C (68 °F)


MINISLIDE MSQscale - Product catalog
MINISLIDE MSQscale - Product catalog MINISLIDE MSQscale measuring systemDownload now
MINISLIDE MSQscale - Mounting instructions
MINISLIDE MSQscale - Mounting instructions Mounting instructions, Technical informationDownload now
MINISLIDE MSQscale Flyer The MINISLIDE MSQscale linear measuring system integrated into MINISLIDE MSQ the SCHNEEBERGER miniature tableDownload now

MINISLIDE MSQscale Product movie

Press releases

SCHNEEBERGER MINISLIDE MSQscale The newly developed MINISLIDE MSQscale linear guideways from Schneeberger provide extremely precise guidance while also meeting stringent cost requirements. The key to this is the combination of guidance and measurement in one compact unit, thereby significantly reducing the cost of construction and installation.Download now

Guiding and measuring in the smallest spaces

The MINISLIDE MSQscale is used in situations where high precision and process reliability are needed due to constricted space.

The most common areas of application for the MINISLIDE MSQscale:

  • Biotechnology
  • Semiconductor industry
  • Laboratory automation
  • Medical technology
  • Metrology
  • Micro-automation
  • Surface finishing
  • Optics industry
  • Robotics, pick & place

Brief overview of the advantages

Highly integrated, compact design
  • The sensor is perfectly integrated into the carriage and sealed
  • The dimensional scale is marked directly on the guideway
Minimal design planning
  • The costs of a separate distance measuring system do not apply
  • More compact designs can be implemented
Quick and easy installation
  • The MSQscale is ready to install upon delivery
  • No need for additional components and special mounting (as would be required for a glass scale, for example)
  • No need to adjust the read head separately
  • No need to align or mount the measuring scale
Consistently high level of accuracy
  • Measurements are made directly as part of normal operation. This significantly reduces the chance of Abbe errors
  • Immune to vibration and shock as a single assembly
  • The measuring scale is part of the guide rail. This reduces the effect of the thermal aspect ratio and amount of compensation required for the controller
  • Very smooth running with no rolling element pulsation
High strength and long service life
  • The MSQscale is based on the successful MINISLIDE MSQ design and the proven measuring technology of the MINISCALE Plus
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