Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Empowered By The Spin

Manoj Thomas has an invented the 'Spin Power' wash, which has a brush, as well as shampoo, that can be used to wash cars effortlessly

Photos by Albin Mathew 

By Shevlin Sebastian

Four years ago, entrepreneur Manoj Thomas was laid low by a severe case of spondylitis. As a result, he found it difficult to wash his car at his home in Chakkampuzha, Pala. So he bought a high-speed hose. But after he washed his vehicle he did not feel satisfied. Then he had to use a piece of cloth to dry the vehicle. But that became difficult to do. So Manoj realised he needed a machine which would clean the car smoothly and not need a cloth to dry it. But there was no such product in the market.
That was when I decided to make one,” he says. Manoj set aside a room in his home, where he got himself a drilling and cutting machine. Thereafter, for the next years, he did numerous trial and error experiments. And finally, he has made the 'Spin Power' car wash equipment.

At his shop, on a recent evening, Manoj looks upbeat. Just outside is his dusty Santro. He immediately connects the Spin Power to an electric outlet as well as a water tap. And when it starts working, the first thing one notices is the way that the brush moves smoothly over the car body, moving clockwise, and anti-clockwise, with water dripping through it. If you turn a knob, drops of shampoo also mixes with the water.
The advantage of this brush, which is of American origin, is that when it comes in touch with water, it becomes smoother,” says Manoj. “So, it has a scratch-free effect.” Effortlessly, Manoj cleans the back, the bonnet, the tyres as well as the top.
The advantage is that after the wash you don't need to dry it,” says Manoj. “That's because we use clean water throughout. When you use a bucket and a piece of cloth, you carry on cleaning the car even when the water turns black. So, when the car dries, there are usually spots on it.”

But there are no such issues with Manoj's machine. The Spin Power weighs 1.8 kgs and is priced at Rs 6500. This is cheaper than the high-speed hoses in the market. The other attributes include and A/C as well as a D/C adaptor. The machine uses about 40 volts as compared to the 1500 volts of other products. The number of litres used is 20, which is far less than used by others.

In order to protect his discovery Manoj has applied for a patent. But in India, a patent can take five years to get cleared. “The risk is that when my product is in the market, others will copy it, since there is no patent,” says Manoj. “Unfortunately, I cannot wait so long to get a patent. So, I have decided to keep changing the model to stay one step ahead of the competition.”

Meanwhile, as of now, there are some satisfied customers. Recently, a 53-year-old central government employee James Abraham had gone to buy jackfruit seeds from Manoj's dad nursery. However, there were no seeds in stock. “My father suggested to James that he should have a look at my product,” says Manoj. So, James did so, liked what he he saw and bought it.

After a month of use, James says, “My car [Toyota Etios] can be washed quickly. Since the outer bristles do not rotate, the water does not splash. Sometimes, if there is no electricity slot, it can be used using the car heater. I like this product very much.”

A happy Manoj is keeping his fingers crossed. “I have spent Rs 50 lakh so far,” he says. “But I am confident that customers like James will make Spin Wash a success.” 

(The New Indian Express, Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram)

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