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Raybestos, originally established by A.H Raymond as the A.H Raymond Company, was founded in 1902 in a tiny automotive shop in Bridgeport, Connecticut, with only four employees and very basic supply of equipment. The company began their product line with sets of automotive brakes that boasted improved braking performance due to their pioneering of a new technology involving a non-charring asbestos and copper wire brake lining. This new development in brake technology catapulted Raybestos to the forefront of the braking industry for many vehicles.
Over the course of the next few years, Raybestos merged with a number of other smaller automotive companies, in addition to the Manhattan Rubber Manufacturing Company in 1929. With this partnership, Raybestos continued on their path, providing the United States with the finest braking equipment available. In 1957, Sam Hanks, a driver in the Indianapolis 500, won while driving a car that was equipped with Raybestos disc brakes, and was the first of 23 consecutive Indianapolis 500 winners to run the race using Raybestos equipment. In 1958, Raybestos branched out from the automotive brake industry to assist the U.S. Explorer 1 as it made its way into orbit, with the help of heat shielding that was created using the same technology that Raybestos used to create their brake pads.
In the 1980's, Raybestos was a dominate company in the US marketplace, pulling in over 10 million dollars in 1985 alone. By the mid 1980's, Raybestos had ceased manufacturing any products using asbestos, instead choosing to use materials that were safer for the environment and the employees that handled them. Unfortunately, in 1989, Raybestos was forced to declare bankruptcy due to litigation that was related to their previous use of asbestos materials. This caused trouble for Raybestos and kept them from being profitable until 2001, when they were able to remove themselves from bankruptcy. Since then, Raybestos has regained their popularity, and thrived in the aftermarket marketplace with Mustang owners around the world. They have regained so much of their old business that they have been able to construct a new manufacturing facility in the United Kingdom, expanding their international reach and providing more customers with quality Raybestos products.