How do the controllers work? All Smart Brake remote controllers are wireless and have 65-98 feet (20-30 meter) signal range. They communicate via radio frequency (RF) and do not interfere with other power sources or transmitters.
Which controller(s) is right for me/ my customer? Choose a controller based on your/ your customer's abilities and comfort.
Brake Lever - a natural choice for those with experience using hand brakes on a bike, trike, or handcycle. The adjustable brake lever can be changed to fit the user's hand size, maximizing their grip and hand strength for comfortable and controlled braking. This soft touch controller requires less than 10% of normal hand force.
Thumb Lever - a great choice for smooth and gradual braking with minimal movement. The thumb lever has 80 points of resolution and is operated with just the touch of one thumb/ finger.
Hand Remote - a great choice offering peace of mind to the user and their loved ones. This controller can activate the brake remotely by a parent, companion, or caretaker to bring the user to a slow and controlled stop.
What powers the controllers? The brake lever controller comes with a rechargeable battery that can be charged with a USB (micro B) charger. The brake lever can be fully recharged in ~2.5 hours. The thumb lever and hand remote control operates with a 3.7V CR2032 battery. These batteries are not rechargeable and can be easily purchased at major retailers, grocery, and hardware stores.
Can you use more than one controller? Yes, you can use multiple controllers in parallel and can add more/ different controllers at any time.
What is the Smart Brake Switch? The Smart Brake switch is designed for users with epilepsy, Parkinson's disease, or seizures. Available for special order with any controller, the switch activates the brake in reverse. The user squeezes the brake lever, holds down the thumb lever or hand remote button to ride freely. In the event they become temporarily incapacitated and can no longer control the equipment, they will slowly brake and stop as soon as they release the brake lever, thumb lever, or button.
How does the brake unit work? The Smart Brake brake unit contains a motor that moves in response to wireless signals from the controller. When the controller is activated, a motor pushes a piston into a mineral oil reservoir which pushes oil into the brake lines to the brake calipers to slow and stop the equipment.
Is the Smart Brake system compatible with any brake type? Smart Brake can be used on equipment that has hydraulic disc or rim brakes.
What brakes come with the brake unit? You can choose to order your brake unit for hydraulic disc brakes or rim brakes. The hydraulic brakes are Tektro Auriga HD-T525 or Magura disc brakes. Hydraulic brakes can be ordered to brake a single wheel or brake two wheels, independently (double) or together (twin). When ordering a single hydraulic brake, please order for the specific wheel (left or right, front or back). Rim brakes are Magura HS-11/HS-33 rim brakes. Components are subject to change based on availability.
How many brake units do I need? Each brake unit provides enough force to stop ~220 lbs (combined weight of user + their equipment). You can add more brake units for heavier loads, more control on steep terrain, or those needing to stop from a higher speed.
How are the brake units powered? The brake unit is powered by a Li-ion rechargeable battery. The battery is recharged using a USB micro B charger and achieves a full charge in ~3.5 hours. A fully charged battery delivers ~4,000 full brake cycles.
Do I need to bleed the hydraulic system at the time of install? Nope - the system comes fully bled, charged, and ready for install.
Is Smart Brake safe? Smart Brake has several thousand brake units in active use around the world. Smart Brake systems have been tested by their engineers and consumers in lab and real-world conditions for more than 5 years. Smart Brake is the first company to be granted a patent for wireless brakes for bicycles and other vehicles and their technology has received several innovation and design awards.
Safety is at the heart of their innovation. Smart Brake technology has been extensively tested on different sports and mobility equipment in a variety of applications and weather conditions to ensure there is no compromise on safety. Electronics are protected with sealed covers to protect from rain, snow, corrosive conditions (salt water), and rough dusty/ dirty terrain. The technology features built-in fail-safe measures that provide controlled stop in the event of low battery power (<15%) or signal loss (out of range). This safety brake ensures the user can get a controlled stop and release the brake once the situation is resolved. Smart Brake insists all users have a dual brake system on their equipment - should the first brake system stop responding or not work for whatever reason, the user would have the second, redundant, brake system in an emergency.
What is the Smart Brake Fail-Safe? Smart Brake is committed to safety and makes no compromises - that's why they've developed the Smart Brake Fail-Safe for all their products. In the event of low battery level (<15%) or loss of signal between controller and brake unit, the system will automatically activate the brake, slowing the user to a complete stop. The user can manually release the brake and use their redundant brake system to finish their trip or until they can recharge or re-establish signal.
Why do I need two brake systems? Smart Brake recommends all users have two brake systems on their equipment - one connected to the Smart Brake system, and a second system in the event of emergency. Although it's redundant, safety comes first! If the system ever goes into Fail-Safe mode due to loss of signal or low battery, the user can use the second brake system to get back home safely.
Where can I find Smart Brake's safety disclaimer and instructions? Click here! Please read Smart Brake's safety disclaimer before ordering or installing a Smart Brake system.
Who is Smart Brake for? Smart Brake is for a variety of users, but can be particularly helpful for those with physical or cognitive concerns which impact their ability to safely stop their equipment. In 2018-2019, Smart Brake conducted a user study together with a leading Norwegian rehabilitation center to identify the need for better bicycle brakes adapted for people with disabilities. The study confirmed their hypotheses that many people with impaired hand function due to illness or other disorders struggle to use traditional brakes. Read more here.
When and where can you use Smart Brake? Smart Brake has many applications - cycling, skiing, sledding, wheelchair-rolling (just to name a few) - and is designed to work with any application in which the equipment uses traditional disc or rim brakes. Can't find what you need or not sure if Smart Brake will work for you? Contact us and we'll be happy to discuss.
What materials are used in Smart Brake systems? Smart Brake components are mainly made out of ABS (hard plastic) and aluminum. The criteria for material selection are tolerance, low weight and signal stability. Our materials and components have been thoroughly tested for tolerance, sealing (leakage) and signal strength/stability.
Where is Smart Brake made? Smart Brake was invented and developed in Norway, by a small team of experienced industrial designers, mechanical engineers and software developers. Individual components are sourced and made around the world and Smart Brake assembles, tests and ships products from their headquarters outside Oslo, Norway.
How can I clean my Smart Brake system? You can clean the brake unit and controller using a cloth and some water with mild soap. Avoid washing the brake discs and brake pads with soap - use water only. Do not use any high pressure water spray to clean your system, i.e. power washer, high pressure hose setting.
Does Smart Brake offer a warranty for their products? Yes. Smart Brake products come with a 1-year warranty starting from the day of purchase. The warranty does not cover parts susceptible to normal wear and tear or damages resulting from a crash, incorrect use, or lack of proper care of maintenance. Legal warranty rights remain unaffected by the guarantee. Please complete this form to submit your warranty claim.
Does Smart Brake offer technical support? Absolutely. Smart Brake has a number of resources available to help you install, activate, and safely operate the Smart Brake system. Click here to check out the Smart Brake Help page for instructions, manuals, video tutorials, troubleshooting guide, and more. Please review these resources to troubleshoot your issue first before contacting us for technical support.
Need more help? Lancaster Recumbent is located in the eastern US time zone to help answer any questions and you have access to Smart Brake in Norway (central Europe time zone).
Phone: +47 64959444 (international calling rates apply)