Lever handle FSB 1305:

probably the only design by Otl Aicher yet to be marketed is being issued on 13 May 2022 in a limited edition


Otl Aicher, one of Germany’s leading 20th-century designers, moulded the corporate culture of premium hardware manufacturer FSB to lasting effect. He would have turned 100 on 13 May 2022. The premium hardware maker from Brakel is marking the occasion by issuing the FSB 1305 model as a limited edition. It was the only lever handle Otl Aicher ever authored and had previously lain dormant in the company archives.

The process of cooperation Franz Schneider Brakel GmbH + Co KG entered into with Otl Aicher in the mid-1980s yielded the company more than just a distinctive logo based on a door handle by the philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein. The pioneer of visual communication devised a public identity for FSB that was well-conceived throughout and furnished the company with a soundly-based corporate culture. On the basis of the “Four-Point Guide to Good Grip” formulated by Otl Aicher, FSB has made it its duty ever since to manufacture products for the hand that, as well as being visually compelling, set benchmarks in the marketplace in terms of ergonomics and user-friendliness. A door handle is considered properly designed for the hand if it features a thumbrest, a forefinger furrow, support for the palm and gripping volume.

FSB is marking the centenary of Otl Aicher’s birth by unveiling the FSB 1305 lever handle he designed in the late-1980s, a small number of which were produced at the time for his studio in Rotis. The model is being issued in a limited edition of 100 sets. It is being produced as a oneoff under the “FSB Handmade” scheme in the variants 0105 Silver Anodised Aluminium and 0810 Blasted Aluminium Black Anodised and will be presented for the first time at an event being held on 13 May 2022 in Berlin’s Academy of the Arts as part of the “otl aicher 100” project the International Design Centre in Berlin is running.

The thinking behind probably the only object designed by Otl Aicher yet to enter the public domain remains a matter of conjecture. Aicher was a professed admirer of Johannes Potente’s moulded-to-the-hand designs from the 1950s for one thing. It was these models that gave him the idea for the “Four-Point Guide to Good Grip” he drafted. And the legendary graphic designer is also known to have been enthusiastic about FSB 1147, the “quintessential” door handle after a model by Ludwig Wittgenstein that Aicher used as the basis for the distinctive FSB logo he devised. So, did Otl Aicher subject this iconic shape to the Four-Point Guide to Good Grip? The FSB 1305 lever handle differs from Wittgenstein’s model in that, as well as a thumbrest, it also incorporates a forefinger furrow, broad support for the palm and, in association with this, plenty of gripping volume - factors that make for very good ergonomics and handling but also help explain the fitting’s somewhat lumpy appearance.

About FSB
FSB has been focusing on perfection for more than 140 years now and is a byword the world over for visually and functionally peerless hardware solutions for doors and windows and for barrier-free sanitary fit-outs of the highest order. Architects and builders’ clients relish reaching out for products from Brakel in recognition of FSB’s great design expertise and profound understanding of the requirements of modern construction. Everything in any way associated with handle culture in built spaces is catered to from a single source.

Franz Schneider
Brakel GmbH + Co KG

Anne Levy
Nieheimer Straße 38
33034 Brakel
Telefon: +49 5272 608-105