Missing a Trick!
I tested out my prototype P2 that summer and I felt like I was clearly missing something essential in the design, the construction with the screws was too fussy for my liking and made it slow to put together, I needed to explore further options to make the functionality work but with my design knowledge not in products I looked out for help.
I pitched my business plan to a design agency, they help out clients develop designs for manufacture (the type that go on Dragon’s Den) they immediately took a shine into the game, they admitted it was hard at first to picture the solution as I had done so much of the hard grafting myself up until that point. Many quiet months went by but they finally came up with the goods, they came up with a crutch pin design mechanism similar to the one in the design today.
With the design development done, I found Nick Christie, the CEO at Jump 7 (, Jump 7 help clients get their products to market through TV shopping channels, online retailers, in gift catalogues/mail order and onboard airlines. They have professional knowledge in PR, warehousing, shipping, logistics, video production, website design, creative design and manufacturing. I met up with Nick for a training and mentoring session, he assessed all of the work to date and gave me some extremely valuable advice and predictions on my game going forward.
Supply Chain Management
Nick put me in-touch with Russel Cohen, a general Manager at MSA (Manufacturing Services Agency, http://www.manufacturingservicesagency.com/) they supply full end to end supply chain management support from project management, production management, quality control inspection, container shipping, warehouse and logistics to getting your product to the end consumer. I took Russ on to source factory tooling quotes, component prices, finished goods costs, packaging methods, MOQ information and a landed CIF (Cost, insurance, and freight) UK calculator.
Due to the nature of parts in the P3 design, tooling costs were huge and due to the number of parts my landed cost was fairly high. I went back to Nick with the results and decided we needed some more design development work to simplify the product further. A new freelance contract came in and everything got put on hold.