Motor Brake Razor & Blade Business Model

Featured Product from Force Control Industries, Inc.

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The razor and blades business model is a concept wherein one item is sold at a low price (or given away for free) in order to increase sales of complementary goods or services. This model has been used by several high profile companies. Gillette found they could "Give 'em the razor; sell 'em the blades" and they would make their profit on the disposables – the blades. Every improvement in razors required a blade made specifically for that razor. So if they could get a customer to buy the razor at a greatly reduced cost, they would have to use their blades. Another famous company for many years did the same with film cameras. Everyone knows how inexpensive Kodak cameras were but the company made a fortune on film for their cameras. Inkjet printers fall into the same category. Low price printers provide a constant stream of highly profitable ink cartridges.

A similar business model is used in the clutch and brake business. Motor brakes are brakes that mount on the back of electric motors used in many manufacturing plants for all sorts of applications including cranes.  Inexpensive dry friction brakes are often used for this purpose and sold to the OEM and motor manufacturer at highly discounted prices. The companies make up the difference by selling parts on a regular basis at much higher profit levels.

This works well for the brake manufacturer (high volume sales), the OEM (keeps equipment cost low) and the motor manufacturer (keeps motor prices low). This in the end keeps the new equipment cost low which is great for the capital equipment buyer.

However the end result is that the higher cost of brake maintenance just got transferred to the maintenance and manufacturing budget.

Is brake maintenance expensive?

Dry friction brakes require constant adjustment, lose torque as they wear, especially if not adjusted regularly (safety issue), and require replacement disks, coils and other parts. But that is not the end. To do this work will probably take a minimum of an hour, (often much more) start to finish, by the time the employee gets ready, goes to the application determines what is needed, does the adjustment, or gets parts and does the repair. Of course shutting down the equipment to do the work may cause loss of production. Additional cost includes the time the storeroom employee spent to find the brake or parts, or call to order. We must also include the time and cost of purchasing to order, or reorder the parts, not to count the inventory cost.

The bottom line – the money saved helping the OEM and motor manufacturer lower their selling price, while making the capital equipment purchase look good, all goes away and then some in maintenance cost and reduced production. In this case the "Give 'em the razor; sell 'em the blades" concept does not help the end user.

There is a solution.

Force Control Industries, Inc. manufacturers clutch and brake products with “Oil Shear Technology”. At a slightly higher cost, the Posistop, Posistop X-Class, and the MagnaShear motor brakes can run up to 10 times longer without replacing parts, and “No Adjustment – Ever”. The totally enclosed housing eliminates issues from dust, dirt, metal shavings, wood chips, moisture, and chemical fumes. The direct acting coil releases the brake with no levers, cranks, pawls or other small breakable parts.

What is Oil Shear Technology?

Unlike dry brakes, oil shear technology includes a layer of automatic transmission fluid between the brake disc and the drive plate.  As the fluid is compressed, the fluid molecules are put in shear – thus imparting torque to the other side.  This torque transmission in a brake causes the rotating surface to decelerate, bringing it to a stop.  Because the fluid film eliminates direct contact of the friction disc with the drive plates, and since most of the work is done by the fluid particles in shear, wear is virtually eliminated.  Elimination of wear also eliminates the need for adjustments which are common for dry braking systems.

In addition to transmitting torque, a patented fluid recirculation system helps to dissipate heat which is the major problem with traditional dry brakes.   Along with heat removal and torque transmission, the fluid serves to continually lubricate all components of the oil shear brake, elongating their service life.  Posistop and MagnaShear brakes with oil shear technology provide significantly longer service life, characterized by virtually maintenance-free operations. 

 Made in the USA – Sold Worldwide