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#MATS: Bendix offers enhanced drum brake for stopping distance requirements

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake (BSFB) has come out with a high-performance extended service drum brake, designed to meet impending new stopping distance requirements set to take effect in August.


Bendix says customers can spec' higher performing drum brakes for the front axle or transition to disc brakes to meet impending new stopping distance requirements. The company offers both solutions.
Bendix says customers can spec' higher performing drum brakes for the front axle or transition to disc brakes to meet impending new stopping distance requirements. The company offers both solutions.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Bendix Spicer Foundation Brake (BSFB) has come out with a high-performance extended service drum brake, designed to meet impending new stopping distance requirements set to take effect in August.

The new requirement, FMVSS 121, will essentially require tractor-trailers to stop 30% shorter than today’s norm. The new drum brake is a higher performing version of Bendix’s popular Single Anchor Pin ES (Extended Service) brake and it will be phased in before the new requirements go into effect, Bendix announced at the Mid-America Trucking Show.

The new brake will feature a larger, 24-inch chamber which Gary Ganaway, director of the foundation brake group said “allows us to put more force into the brake.” The larger brake, Ganaway explained, allows for better heat distribution and greater stopping power on the steer axle. And bronze bushings offer greater durability than plastic bushings, Ganaway added. Also new are precision cams that improve brake geometry and improve overall braking performance, the company announced.

“We developed our new high-performance drum brake to give customers the best possible option for complying with the NHTSA requirements, as well as economical cost of ownership,” said Ganaway. “While meeting the requirements for compliance, this new brake technology also will help improve vehicle safety, which is our core commitment at Bendix. We believe customers will find the high-performance models to be worthy additions to the Extended Service drum brake product line, which offers best-in-class performance.”

The other option for meeting new stopping distance requirements is the use of disc brakes. Ganaway said air disc brakes are finally catching on with fleets. Demand surged 120% between 2008 and 2009 and is expected to grow another 60% between 2010 and 2011, Ganaway noted.

“Our recommendation to fleets has been that as they spec’ new equipment, to try air disc brakes,” he noted. “At the end of the day there’s a value proposition that has to be met and it’s best to let fleets decide for themselves…as fleets try the technology, they like it in increasing numbers. It has proven to be reliable and they have come back.”

Ganaway noted Bendix is tripling its production capacity in anticipation of further demand.


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