Practice Tips #11: Delivery Unit Holders

Delivery Unit Holders

Most dental units, dental carts, and assistant’s stations today employ accessory holders. These holders are an integral part of dental work and invaluable in providing proper dental care. The holders available today are varied, and come in many different configurations to fit your needs.

5/8" or 7/8"?

Typically, most holders will break down into two sizes which are identifiable by the size of their openings. There is the 5/8" opening, which is the most common, and will provide support for saliva ejectors, handpieces, syringes, and high volume evacuators which are held by the tip of the valve. The second style employs a 7/8" opening, and is typically only used to secure high volume evacuation valves which are held by the tubing connector, or base of the valve.

Holder Types

The methods by which to secure these holders to your dental equipment vary as well. One method very common now is to have the holders attach to a 1/2" bar that is attached to a delivery unit, or similar style cart. These holders, which have a 1/2" notch molded into the back of them, slip over the bar and are secured in place by one to two set screws, which fasten the holder to the bar.

Another type of holder attachment sees the holder attached by machine screws, to a block designed to secure the holder in position. The block is typically just a formed piece of plastic or metal, designed to hold the holder in position, relative to the holder’s size. The block also provides threaded holes to attach the holders with provided hardware, typically machine screws. Usually, these holders are attached through a hole in the front, or one to two screw holes that go through the back of the holder. The mounting block will be mounted, in turn to a flat surface or unit. These types of holders are only usable with the use of the mounting block, and attempts to try and mount them to flat surfaces without the block will prove unsuccessful.

A final type of holder, the air activated handpiece holder, is more specific in design. These holders include an air activated valve mounted in the body of the holder, which activates the handpiece when it is removed. These holders are 5/8", and can be mounted in any of the styles discussed above.