The P2 build units have finally arrived 🙌🏻. Customs clearance and Chinese New Year put an almost three-week delay on receiving the units, but now they’re here for testing. We ended up producing 75 units, and our team in Portland received 28 of them for evaluation. Our manufacturing team in China is using the other 47 units for all kinds of validation and testing purposes (functional testing, stress testing, life testing, fixture testing, etc.).
About half of the units that we received had damage to the brush head. Our current hypothesis is that they were exposed to high temperatures while in transit, which deformed the PLA bioresin, which then allowed the bristles to explode out of the holes. Not all brush heads were damaged, so can still proceed with testing the rest. Images of the damaged head units below:
PLA has some environmental benefits around degradability and reduced reliance on petroleum, but we’re learning that it also presents limitations around resistance to its environment. Based on this result, we’re reviewing the available bioresin compounds and other materials for further testing. The last thing we want is for a Be. Brush to show up to you after years of waiting only to find its head has exploded due to hot weather!
Cosmetically, we’re very impressed and excited to see how good these units look at this P2 stage. “P2 build” means it’s the second multi-unit prototype build on a full assembly line using ALL production parts this time around (a milestone to celebrate in itself). This is the first time we’ve used all of our ultrasonic welding machines on production parts, and, as you can see from the photos, the housings and components are assembling and fitting together very well.
Functionally, we’ve improved in some areas from the P1 build, including the input torque, replaceable brush head connection, button function & feel, and runtime. The task at hand is to improve the brush head oscillation strength. We’re working with our engineering team here in the Portland area as well as our engineers in China to increase the oscillation strength to hold up to typical brushing. The P2 build is a major milestone for the project, and we’re enthusiastic about the results overall, knowing there is still work to be done.
The refinements list is getting smaller and smaller and we’re feeling very optimistic about the progress and revolutionary product we’re developing. Hang in there!
The next step is for our manufacturer to do another mini-build in about three weeks to test four small changes to a few parts that we and our engineers believe will increase the oscillation strength. At that point, we should be ready for our local testers to come in and test the improved samples. We previously thought that the P2 stage would be the right time to invite a few backers who responded to the call in the last update into the office to test the samples, but we know the brush head strength isn’t where it needs to be. Those of you who responded to the last call, please stay tuned for an invitation after what we hope are improvements after the mini-build.
We know you’ve been waiting a long time for an updated delivery timeline, and we won’t have that until these critical details have been resolved. But once the mini-build is complete and the issues are resolved, we’ll have a timeline for the engineering builds of 200-500 units, which are the next step.
We are super grateful for our early adopter community—thank you for joining us on this journey!