Remember when you learned to drive a car? At first, the pedals seemed a little tricky - remembering which was which, trying to master clutch control...
And then in very quick time, the whole thing was second nature. Your feet, it turned out, were capable of dealing with quite complex things - pressure, speed, and quick action in an emergency.
Footswitches bring a new edge to many tasks by giving the user the ability to multitask. They save space, too - on production lines and conveyor belts using a footswitch on the floor makes the most of every square centimetre.
In medical environments they can be used to control the height of a hospital bed, sparing medical staff heavy lifting and bending. They’re found in agriculture, in forestry, in office equipment, and in laboratories. They’re used for CCTV, for image capture, and for lighting.
These simple, unassuming pieces of technology allow innovation in some of the most creative industries. Using a footswitch allows creators to extend the boundaries of what they can achieve with two hands alone. Musicians use them at live gigs, creating the impression of multiple musicians and singers, boosting and distorting their sound, and playing repeats of riffs or lyrics.
The tattoo artist uses a foot pedal to control the voltage of electricity going through the tattoo needle, leaving both hands free to work on the design. And all those who sew - from home sewists creating their own clothes to high end fashion design houses - use foot pedals to work their machines.
Marquardt produce a range of modern, ergonomically-designed foot switches for use in a range of environments. The Series 2420 is protected against dust and water to IP65 and IP67 levels, and can even be fitted with a metal protection cover to protect the user in heavy duty environments.
Strong and with an anti-slip surface, it has holes for fixing to the floor if needed, and a snap-action switching system which has a proven lifetime of over 300,000 operations. It also gives really good tactile feedback to the user.
Many colour choices are available, and you can even have logos printed on the rocker.
With a range of switching options ranging from low-level signals up to 21A currents, it can be configured as a standard switch or as a single or double pole, with a latching option.
It meets the flammability requirements of UL 94 VF-2 and is suitable for use with double-insulated appliances.
Also in the Marquardt range is the Series 2410, a customisable switch which is robust and ergonomic, and comes with a wall hanger.
The 2410 can be seen at Nexus here http://www.nexuscomponents.co.uk/Manufacturers/MARQUARDT
Photo by Gabriel Gurrola on Unsplash