Here's one "lite" product that's not talking about fewer calories. Instead, Ashworth Bros., Inc., Winchester, Va., says new Omni-Pro FlexLite conveyor belt is a rugged, strong, and lightweight belt for conveying pans, trays, and large products.

Officials say the new belt's innovative design incorporates Ashworth's Omni-Pro® link and utilizes a very open 1.5” x 3” (fixed loop) flat wire overlay. The result, they say, is an efficient, lightweight belt with increased carrying capacity and a spiral/turn-curve tension rating of 400 lbs. for 100,000 cycles, vs. competing belts that rate for 50,000 cycles.

The open surface area - 90 percent in a straight run and 87 percent in spiral or turn-curve applications - is easy to clean and cools/freezes foods faster by improving air circulation. Turn ratios range from 1.6 to 2.5 and belt widths are available in even widths from 24 to 60 inches.

Ashworth notes that Omni-Pro® FlexLite retains the same Omni-Pro® design features that minimize cage bar wear, maintenance costs and downtime in the most demanding spiral applications. They add that a state-of-the-art link design includes a patented “protrusion leg” that prevents welds from contacting spiral cage bars and permits the belt to run smoother with less system wear. Each link is formed with a patented coining process to prevent break-in wear, reducing belt elongation and increasing belt life.

Ashworth says new weld technology has enabled it to produce cleaner and stronger welds. By eliminating traditional “bridge” welding and utilizing a patented 360-degree weld, the Omni-Pro® FlexLite is capable of withstanding the highest loads in their class, without failure. Unlike a traditional bridge weld, the 360-degree buttonless weld is free from surface imperfections and crevices which improve hygienic characteristics by eliminating bacteria entrapments.