Lift break Lift break



Alift break is an equipment that is used to reduce the speed at whicha lift is moving so as to prevent cases of accidents that couldresult from the same. Quite evidently, this equipment requiresmaterials that have a high level of strength so as to avoid a case ofbreakages. They also need material that is ductile and able tostretch to a given margin without breaking. The stretch acts as a gooshock absorber, and, therefore, helps to absorb the energy that isproduced by the lift while it is moving. It is, also important forthe lift break equipment to be made of material that is much cheaperto produce so as to save the company involved the unnecessary costthat is brought up by making high-cost material. Given thissituation, there are various considerations that the company needs tomake as it relates to the material that it shall choose to use formaking the lift break equipment.

AlternativeSteel Materials

Soas to come up with material that can have better qualities asrequired to be used for lift break and as well, have a very low cost,the company needs to source for other better material than low carbonsteel. The company can, therefore, opt for the following four typesof material that could help solve the problem of case hardening thatthe company is trying to avoid so as to come up with material that isa bit cheaper to produce since the process of case hardening will beavoided at all levels. The alternatives are as follows

  • Medium-carbon steel

Thisis steel that has a carbon content of about 0.3%-6.0 %. The materialis highly ductile and very strong. It is also highly resistant totear and wear. This is a very important quality since it helps toprevent the company from undergoing unnecessarily high costs ofmaintenance.

  • High-carbon steel

Thisis steel that has a carbon content of between 0.7% -2.5%. It is muchstronger than the medium-carbon steel and highly preferred in themaking of springs and wires of great strength because of thequalities that it does possess.

  • Ultra- High Carbon Steel

Thisis steel material that has a carbon content of between 2.5%-3.0%. Itis has a great deal of hardness, thereby making it highly resistantto breakages.

Materialof choice

Giventhe above material indicated, it will be much more prudent for thecompany to choose the high-carbon steel material over the rest forthe lift break. This is, because, although the rest have qualitiesthat satisfy most of the needs for making the equipment, the oneprovided by the high-carbon steel are much better. This material isalso highly applicable to the making of springs owing to the factthat it has a well enhanced ductility that provides it the capacityto be used for the same. Given the fact that lift breaks work on thesame principle as springs, the quality required for them also sharesimmensely with the one that the spring has.

Thematerial is also highly preferred as an industrial component due tothe fact that it has a machinerability element. The element drawsclosely from the enhanced hardness that it has, which makes it beable to withstand a lot of pressure. It has not only the harness butalso the brittleness. This aspect enables the material to be able tobend, without breaking, which is quite a crucial characteristic asfar as a lift break is concerned.

Thereare various materials that are included into this type of steel whileit is being made so as to improve on its quality. For instance, thematerial is reinforced with manganese at a percentage that rangesfrom 0.3% -0.9%. The manganese helps to build on the hardness of thesteel and also ensure that it can last for much longer while stillbearing the same characteristics that it had while it was still beingmade. The steel is also reinforced with lead. This metal is vitasince it makes the steel more machinerable, especially if it containssome traces of sulphur on it. It is, however, quite vital to put inmind that a very little amount of lead is required for this purposesince a large amount wound interferes with the strength of thematerial. About 15 grams of lead are needed for every 45 kilograms ofsteel that is made. Another element that is mostly found in this typeof steel is sulphur. The element most often than not appears as animpurity in the carbon that is used in the making of the high-carboncontent steel. It is left in the carbon due to the great positiveimpact that it has on the steel that is finally made. Sulphurenhances the ductility and strength of the final material that isusually made. The element also helps to reduce the weldability aswell as reduce the toughness. Both of these qualities are quitesignificant in the making of a lift break.

Thereduced cost of making the high-carbon steel is also quitesignificant. This is because, unlike the low-carbon steel, thismaterial does not require the outer casting of carbon while it isbeing made. Such a process is quite expensive since it requires anextreme amount of heat which is able to attach the carbon to theouter parts of the iron that need to be converted into steel. In theprocess of making high-carbon steel, the iron material is mixedtogether with the carbon material of a higher content. This carbon byitself reduces the melting point of the material that needs to beheated up. In the long-run, the entire composition will require amuch lesser amount of heat so as to stick together as one steelmaterial. The lesser heat requirement, in the long run, translatesinto a much less of electricity for the provision of the heat. It isalso cheaper to make compared to other material that has an even muchhigher carbon content such as the Ultra-high carbon steel. This isbecause this kind of steel ends up requiring an immense amount ofheat so as to stick together because the amount of carbon that it hasis far much higher than what would normally be put up. The higher thecarbon content, the more the hardness is achieved but this leads toan even much high cost of production, especially after the carboncontent exceeds 2.5%.

Inconclusion, bearing in mind that the high-carbon steel bears most ofthe qualities required for use as a lift break, it would be the mostpreferred one. It has great mechanical and physical properties. Aswell, it is enhanced with other chemicals that improve itsproperties. The material is also much cheaper to make compared to thetwo alternatives provided.


Michael,F.D. (2008).Iron and Steel Scrap. In the United States Geological Survey.Minerals Yearbook 2008, 1: Metals and Minerals.Government Printing Office.