A dental lab motor is a primary device for every laboratory, and one of the most frequently used pieces of equipment. Motors are designed for working on models, finishing and polishing restorative devices, and cutting off sprues among other tasks. These motors often have corresponding handpieces, which are included as a set.
The motor you choose is based on the materials the laboratory uses most often, as well as the operating system most suitable for your purposes. Whether you opt for a motor controlled by a foot pedal or prefer a hand dial, it’s important that it matches your ideal way of working. For laboratories where space is at a premium, vertical or horizontal placement dental motors offer a smaller footprint. If mobility is a requirement, compact, lightweight or portable motors are the solution. When you’re making a selection it’s important to consider all aspects of the product, including grinding power and maintenance processes.
Types of Dental Motors
Dental motors come in two different types: air-driven turbines and electric motors. Air motors drive the burs indirectly at a maximum speed of 350,000 rpm, but electric motors have become more popular in the past few decades as innovations in design, materials, torque and light make usage faster and easier. These motors reach idling speeds of up to 50,000 rpm, and the torque ensures the burs can continue cutting at a constant speed regardless of the load or the material being used.
Within the electric dental lab motor category is a range of models, each designed for specific types of work. The brushless dental micromotor, for example, is used when working with dental grade zirconium, chrome cobalt alloy, and denture acrylic. It’s also suitable to plaster polishing and has a longer lifespan than the brush-type motors, lasting for up to one million 0.5s on-off cycles. Look for a motor that provides consistent torque even at low speeds.
The features depend on the electric dental lab motor model you select, but standard issue typically includes:
Speeds of up to 50,000 rpm
Higher precision cutting with less vibration
A complete set that includes a control box, handpiece, and speed control foot pedal
Self-diagnostic error display
Support straight and contra-angle handpieces
Work memory storage, and
A one-year warranty.
In the Dental Lab
A dental lab motor is most often used in a laboratory environment with various handpiece models, to perform the heavy-duty grinding and adjustments required to prepare restorative dental devices for delivery. After production, these devices need finishing and polishing to remove superfluous material, before sending the device to the dentist.
In the Dental Practice
Dentists are tasked with fitting restorative devices for their patients, which often requires minor adjustments to be made in-office using dental instruments powered by a motor. Having the best equipment for the job will enable you to trim and polish porcelain, composites, metals or acrylic dentures. In such instances, the brushless dental lab motor is ideal because of the low noise levels and attractive finish.