Thursday, March 22, 2007

sci-fi teethbrushing

like most adults who meet a minimum standard of personal responsibility, i brush my teeth three times per day (my normal level is twice but having been afflicted with braces for the last year and nine months it's somewhat of a necessity to brush after lunch at work so as not to be physically repulsive to those around me during conversations).

and like some i have moved into the world of motorized tooth-cleaning apparati; i had used a pretty inexpensive disposable-battery-powered brush for a while, but recently my wife bought me the same one that she uses, the Oral B Sonic Vitality. still pretty inexpensive, something like $20, but does the job well enough.

i love the fact that the Vitality has a timing mechanism; once you turn it on, it runs for two minutes and then delivers a pulsating wind-down signal to let you know "ok that's good enough for now, stop brushing before you go through the enamel and start hitting dentine." i have come to accept that i require this external source of discipline for my tooth care; i'm just waiting for the dental products industry to develop a floss that wraps itself around my fingers and compels me to do the extra in-between-tooth work.

The $20 investment also moves me out of the realm of Duracell AA's and into rechargable battery territory; what i did not bargain for in this purchase was the ensuing sense of puzzlement that this toothbrush set has provided in that regard.

the toothbrush is made of solid, hard plastic; at the bottom of the toothbrush is a small recessed cavity. the recharging station is a simple affair; an entirely plastic base upon which is fashioned a small plastic peg.

Recharging station peg A fits into toothbrush cavity B; in this manner (as pictured on the link) the toothbrush is left to recharge over the course of several hours.

now i was never a man who particularly excelled at the sciences but the times in which i have mused about or witnessed examples of battery power and recharging, it was always strictly a metal-to-metal contact point affair.

what manner of dark arts is Oral B tampering with to achieve battery recharging with all-plastic components? i'm not exactly sure, but somehow i feel there's a military application for whatever it is they've created. maybe Oral B is a subsidiary company of Raytheon...

anyways, i'm sure the simple answer is out there on the interweb but for now i'd like to stay in my blissfully ignorant cocoon, continuing to believe that Oral B has signed some pact with the devil to make The Toothbrush That Should Not Be (Recharging).

anyone care to burst my bubble with some truth?

1 comment:

Shayan said...

Im puzzled aswell. I just got the brush yesterday and noticed the all plastic shell today. I even ran my fingers on it to make sure I wasnt just imagining plastic. Its pretty slick, im searching for answers.It might be a well kept secret of Braun though. My guess is the plastic is capable of conducting small amounts of electricity but there is more to it, the mechanism probabaly works with a magnet in place, so it only turns on when the Brush (+) for example is placed by (-) the recharger. Thats my guess.

email me at if you find out.