At Split Jaw, we are huge believers in innovation. So, congratulations on you and your Son’s idea! Before I comment, I’d like to point out the history of the product line:
The original Split Jaw company was formed in the 1990’s, and lasted until 2018 when the founders decided to call it quits. As a new, reincarnated Split Jaw Products, we only opened our doors in April 2021, and sold our first insulated rail clamps in Summer 2021. So here in February 2023 I’d like to clarify any problems you have had “over the years” with Split Jaw insulator clamps were very likely not our products. Hey, not everyone knows or cares about our little company’s history, so the mistake is easy to understand.
You are 100% right about the ‘old’ Split Jaw’s insulated rail clamps needing more strength and better insulating design. That’s why we intentionally made a big change to the design. Starting with an improved design, after some good initial customer feedback in our first few months, we continued with product evolution. For insulated rail clamps, Split Jaw now has our crush strength exceeding 100 lbs/in2. Plus, we are using a proven reinforced polymer that holds up to Sunlight and weather. We have this fun, weather-accelerator gizmo for this durability test.
Today’s Split Jaw uses the strongest stainless screws we have seen in our hobby. But realistically speaking, plastic will never be as strong as metal. So definitely it is still possible, as with any plastic-to-metal combination, to crush the plastic against the metal. Users should remember the main purpose of insulators is electrical, and not mechanical. Our insulating clamps provide some of the famous Split Jaw rail-aligning features, but not with the holding power and toughness of a 100% metal rail clamp.
That said, anyone who purchased our Split Jaw insulating rail clamps, and got a little overzealous with screw tightening, is very welcome to contact us at www.railclamp.com/about for a free replacement.
Keep up the good posts!