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Hello to everyone from AirVenture in Oshkosh WI, where Synergy is a featured guest of EAA in the Innovations Hangar South. John Paul and I are presenting all week in the forums, tech center, on the radio, and at special events including AeroInnovate. It's a nine day, 18 hours a day workweek, and completely exhausting!Just prior to our departure, some of the Kickstarter rewards arrived and we brought them with us to the booth. Many backers have already stopped by to meet us, chat, and receive their hats and mugs. As soon as we get home in the first couple days of August we'll ship out what we can. This is our seventh annual trip to the epicenter of US Aviation, and is on the schedule every year as the key commitment of our development of the aircraft, its technologies, and its opportunities.
I'm sure J is not alone, but let's take this opportunity to adjust our expectations. It takes weeks and months of effort to do the work that results in a few days of forward construction progress: the photos we occasionally post on our Facebook page to keep our many pre- and post-Kickstarter supporters in the loop come in bunches every few months. That's just how it is and how it has always been. For the most part, the first 90% of the work is programming and cutting with the CNC machine and doing detailed solid modeling in the computer.
I like seeing shots of that stuff as much as anyone, but there are only two people doing that part right now, and it takes a very significant amount of time (while holding the twenty or so active thoughts involved in the work itself) to create, collect, describe, and post updates of that type. It is truly a major distraction and we must limit it to the available time for it. Right now, there is nothing to see, but we're going full steam ahead on several fronts. Minor posts are made as frequently as time allows, and we try to introduce people working in the shop and some of the things we're doing on our Facebook page.
Although we're still a week or two away from actually having any of the money (Amazon holds the funds for two weeks, and the transfer itself can take five business days), we wanted to let everyone know how much we truly appreciate the incredible support we've received. Every single pledge counts with us and we're grateful to be able to continue the project.
All but $7355 of the original pledges were successfully collected, making the direct revenue total to the project roughly $80,000 after fees, assuming most backers used a credit card. After reward fulfillment costs, we'll still be able to run long shifts all summer long to reach our project goal.
While managing something like five hundred emails a day, due to the extraordinary global press our project received (the video was seen more than 36,000 times on Kickstarter alone), we were still able to get started on programming the next few parts and cutting the lower wing center section mold, which we'll need to put Synergy on its mains and begin connecting all the pieces. As things get a little crazier we'll definitely try to post pictures and updates here, but if the news seems slow in coming from us it just means we're busy, busy, busy! Be sure to follow all the latest news and updates on our Facebook page and website, and be sure to say hi if you see us at Oshkosh (mark your calendars for next year!)
With gratitude for this opportunity,
With "hours" to go, Kickstarter certainly has our full attention here at the fledgling Synergy Aircraft Works. From every corner of the globe, people have reached out to support this project.
Now it comes down to the clock. One day's Kickstarter results can mean a productive month in the shop (!!!) but our coming up far short of the stretch goal could mean that the time we'll need to capitalize and the time we need to build don't get along very well.
Dedicated funds mean effective planning and efficient work, and we want Synergy at Oshkosh next year! The next two days will have a huge bearing on how that comes together.
Thanks again to everyone for your impressive and generous support!
A few newer links are below, including a Podcast interview on Flighttime Radio, where I once again prove I'm just an edjumacated hillbilly who grew up waterskiing on the Lake of the Ozarks. Charlie and Milford made me feel right at home.
pledged of $65,000 goal
seconds to go
May 13, 2012 - Jun 4, 2012
Pledge $5 or more
We make every dollar count and we truly appreciate your pledge. Whether Synergy is out setting world records or flying to your city, not only will you be able to say you helped us make it, you can let everyone know it was your fuel that took us the last fifty miles!Estimated delivery: Sep 2012
Pledge $10 or more
92 backers Limited (908 of 1000 left)
US backers will receive a signed, limited edition full color postcard expressing our thanks for your support, mailed with a cool Synergy stamp right on it. International backers please add $3 to cover additional postage and handling.Estimated delivery: Sep 2012
Pledge $25 or more
169 backers Limited (831 of 1000 left)
Enthusiastic backers deserve our awesome Synergy beverage mug, a device that puts a daily smile on our faces... surely yours too. Show up with yours where we happen to be and it'll double as your credential for a seat in the cockpit, event rules and circumstances permitting. International backers please add $5 or more to cover additional postage and handling.Estimated delivery: Sep 2012
Pledge $50 or more
85 backers Limited (1915 of 2000 left)
Backers at the $50 to $100 level will become the proud owner of our special Sponsor Edition Synergy shirt, a garment that also comes with all of the VIP privileges that we can bestow on the wearer, such as those above. You helped make this happen! International backers please add $5 or more to cover additional postage and handling.Estimated delivery: Sep 2012
Pledge $100 or more
221 backers Limited (279 of 500 left)
$100+ backers will find their name printed on the finished full scale prototype. You'll also get to fly in it, if you want... just don't expect a short line! A VIP edition, US-made Synergy 'icon logo' hat included at this level serves as your credential. (We aren't promising to connect with backers by means of a tour or anything at this point, just saying that when we're in the same place at the same time and can offer rides, sponsors and Kickstarter backers come first! We expect that Synergy will be in high demand, so we will be making every effort to be at major aviation events and otherwise be available.)Estimated delivery: Sep 2012
Pledge $250 or more
39 backers Limited (1 of 40 left)
We understand that you missed your chance to help the Wright Brothers, but there's another genuine bike mechanic once guilty of 'flying contraptions off hills', and since he had to decline Burt Rutan's awesome job offer to live in Montana, he'd probably appreciate your support! In addition to a 'swag' bag containing all of the goodies above (name on the plane, ride, etc), John will set a date with you for a personal interview and tour of the prototype in the shop via webcam.Estimated delivery: Sep 2012
Pledge $500 or more
All of the above, plus Backers at this level join Noah's Marine, Plum Creek Timber, Jack Moon, David McCloskey, John Kazickas, Chris McGeary, Edward Gallagher, Kitefilm.com, Tom Woodruff, and others as Synergy Bronze Level Sponsors and will be recognized along with them equally. Sponsors at all medal levels will be invited to join our entourage if they're among the visitors at AirVenture Oshkosh. (Synergy "sponsorship" benefit details predate this campaign and are not public at this time. They should not be considered as having any specific Kickstarter reward value other than the cumulative rewards described in prior pledge levels).Estimated delivery: Jul 2013
Pledge $1,000 or more
You have the means. This IS the opportunity. For your pledge at this level you'll get all the rewards below it and enjoy exclusive access to a live video stream of engine first start... plus an appointment with executive staff to spend time with you and hear you out regarding ways to ensure this compelling premise succeeds as a business someday. You'll have our full attention, and we'll set an appointment for AirVenture, on site, or via webcam.Estimated delivery: Jul 2012
Pledge $2,000 or more
Backers at this level join Eric Peterson, MAS Epoxies, Howard Wilkins, Howard Handelman, and others as Synergy Silver Level Sponsors and will be recognized along with them equally. Synergy "sponsorship" benefit details predate this campaign and are not public at this time. They should not be considered as having any specific Kickstarter reward value other than the cumulative rewards described in prior pledge levels, but TEAM SYNERGY swag is included (with all other benefits, of course) for Kickstarters.Estimated delivery: Jul 2013
Pledge $5,000 or more
Backers at this level join Justin Daugherty, Tamarack Inc, Deltahawk Engines, and others as Synergy Gold Level Sponsors and will be recognized along with them equally. An exclusive web video link will take you to live coverage of first flight. An exclusive Synergy desktop model with moving parts is also included (with all other team swag, of course) for Kickstarters. (No extra wait on most items. Synergy "sponsorship" benefit details predate this campaign and are not public at this time. They should not be considered as having any specific Kickstarter reward value other than the cumulative rewards described in prior pledge levels).Estimated delivery: Jul 2013
Pledge $10,000 or more
1 backer Limited (1 of 2 left)
Fluid Dynamics Level 1 Safari with John. Domestic round trip airfare to Kalispell for two; two nights at the Hilton for up to four; a comfortable day at the shop followed by dinner with the McGinnis family, then a guided trip down the Middle Fork of the Flathead River bordering Glacier National Park with Glacier Raft Company the following day. Over the course of this incredibly scenic, "WOW! I get it now!" excursion, backers will acquire, with zero effort, a better mastery and visualization of advanced fluid dynamics principles than in a semester of college... and probably, a tan. Naturally, a selection of truly exclusive Team Synergy souvenirs to take home.Estimated delivery: Jun 2012
Pledge $10,000 or more
1 backer Limited (6 of 7 left)
One of only seven exclusive museum-quality bronze castings of an original centerpiece artwork, "Synergy prime": archetypical sculpture by John McGinnis.Estimated delivery: Dec 2012