Elevator Brake

The elevator brake was invented by an inventor by the name of Elisha Otis. Otis moved to Yonkers, New York as a manager of a sawmill that he was to convert into a bedstead factory. One day when Otis was cleaning up the debris in the factory he wondered how he could get the debris up to the higher levels of the factory. Otis had often heard of hoisting platforms but they broke often. Otis didn't want to take the risk of the cables breaking so he met with his sons, who were also inventors and created their own safety elevator. They came up with a brake that could stop the elevator if the cables snapped. Otis didn't plan on starting a business with their elevator nor did he ask for a raise. The bedstead company started to decline and Otis took the opportunity to start an elevator company out of it. After the New York's World Fair in 1854 Otis Brothers and Co. boomed.


The elevator brake is a simple mechanism that makes elevators safe for passengers to ride in. Before Elisha Otis invented this brake elevators were very dangerous and relied on ropes. Elisha's design involved using springs to compress levers which would fall into grooves that would bring the elevator to a stop. When the elevator would go up the cable would pull up on the spring compressing the levers. When the elevator stopped the spring would decompress and the levers would fall into the grooves. If the cable was to brake while you were inside the elevator the levers would pop out and fall into the grooves bringing you to a stop.


This invention has changed elevation transportation in a whole new way. Before this invention their was not a safe way to get up a tall building on a hoisting platform. Now people aren't afraid to ride in an elevator because they are safe. Today we can now expand buildings a hundred stories high. Less space is needed for large business buildings because they can now build up. Elevators have saved much needed space around the world today.




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Make Inventions: Otis Safety Elevator