Levaté: Restoring reach for manual wheelchair users project video thumbnail
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$13,235 pledged of $30,000 goal
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By Dillon Dakota Carroll
$13,235 pledged of $30,000 goal
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About

Note- the prototype in the video is just a proof of concept. This is our concept drawing for what the final product will look like.
Note- the prototype in the video is just a proof of concept. This is our concept drawing for what the final product will look like.

 Who we are

We're five passionate inventors and advocates from Oklahoma trying to change the way manual wheelchair users deal with the reach related issues they face on a daily basis. You can find more on each individual team member at the bottom of our homepage, www.levatelift.com.

What we're building

The Levaté Wheelchair Lift is an innovative, easily attachable add-on for manual wheelchairs. By lifting the entire wheelchair 12-18 inches, users can overcome the reach related difficulties they face on a daily basis. This includes reaching extra shelves, cabinets, and countertops, transferring in and out of their wheelchair to their car or bed, and even having a face to face conversation with someone at standing height. You can find more information about Levaté at www.levatelift.com.

The plan

The $30,000 we're raising on Kickstarter is crucial for us to begin work with our product design partners, Soulcake Creative.

To be clear, the total design fee to work with Soulcake Creative is estimated to be $100,000. However, we are pursuing other funding avenues to match with the money we raise from Kickstarter. Here is what the relationship with Soulcake will look like:

  • Phase 1, Finalize Conceptual Design. Soulcake will take the work we've done and finish scoping out the design objectives.
  • Phase 2, Detailed Design and Prototyping. This will finalize all the details, and create an "alpha" lift that is a fully functioning device that incorporates the industrial design as well.
  • Phase 3, Manufacturer Sourcing and Design for Manufacturing. This is the final step, where we'll be gearing up to get the Levaté units manufactured. Soulcake will work with the manufacturer to get 8-10 "beta" units to ensure that once full scale production starts, the Levaté units will function as intended right off the assembly line.

We are incredibly excited to work with Soulcake to finalize the Levaté lift. They are an innovative studio with a history of successful products under their belt. For example, they successfully revived the dying Cobra golf brand to the point where it was acquired by Puma.

With the work with Soulcake wrapping up in about 10 months time, our goal is to pursue manufacturing the wheelchair lift towards the end of 2015.

Thank you so much for your support!

Please consider contributing and supporting our efforts to improve the reach, and independence, of wheelchair users all across the United States!  We are eternally grateful to each and every supporter. Even if you cannot make a financial contribution at this point, please share our Kickstarter on social media. We will do our best to be as clear and transparent about everything along the way. If you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to reach out!

Of course, if you do contribute, we will have some pretty awesome prizes available! To give you an idea of the general design of the prizes, take a look at our anticipated T-shirt:

Anticipated Levaté Tshirt
Anticipated Levaté Tshirt

What the name means

While brainstorming possible names, the team took the E off of "Elevate" for Levate. We quickly realized that Levate in Spanish means "lift yourself", and decided to stick with the name because of its double meaning. Finally, we added the accent over the final e so that it would be clear that it was not a silent letter.

Committed to improving lives

The Levate team is in this to restore the reach and independence of wheelchair users across the United States, and beyond.

Once the lift units have been manufactured and are ready to be sold, we will donate 2% from the sale of each Levaté Lift unit to a charity such as the Free Wheelchair Mission to make sure everyone has the assistive devices they need to lead a independent life.

Longer video with comments from wheelchair users

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Risks and challenges

1. Fundraising.
Kickstarter will be an answer to our prayers if you help us reach this campaign goal. We wish $30,000 were enough to complete this project, but it is enough to get it started. We've been working tirelessly to secure grants and private investment to fund the rest and will continue to do so through the duration of the project and beyond until we are fully funded.

2. Design changes.
As we begin work with Soulcake, it is very possible that the design and form of the lift changes significantly in order to best meet the unique requirements of the product. We have full faith in Soulcake that they can meet the various criteria we've given them for the Levaté Lift, and they have the track record to prove it. We fully expect that they will create the best possible solution, and a beautiful one at that, which may look different from our concept drawings and prototypes. We will keep all backers informed of any changes as they occur.

3. Commercialization.
It is tough work getting a new product to market. The cofounders of Levaté, Ethan and Dillon, are dedicated to seeing this product through to success. They are working full time and living off savings in order to learn the skills and build the relationships and framework for this project to ultimately be successful.

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Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Social Media Shoutout- Earn the team's undying love and gratitude - plus a digital thank you on our Facebook & Twitter!

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Levaté Sticker- Represent with this sleek sticker sporting the Levaté logo and the words "reaching new heights".

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    5 backers
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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    Thank-you note handwritten on a postcard, direct from Oklahoma City!

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Autographed picture of the team, with a handwritten thank-you on the back!

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    6 backers
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    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    Levaté T-shirt. Look outrageously good-looking in a black T-shirt sporting the Levaté logo, name, and the words "reaching new heights".

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    12 backers
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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Plastic Levaté logo keychain fob. A simple yet stylish accessory that will remind you of your awesomeness every time you pull out your keys!

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    4 backers
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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Metal, laser cut Levaté logo + the plastic keychain fob above. Perfect as an attractive, modern desk or wall decoration or a paperweight.

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    10 backers
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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Swag Bag with all of the above prizes: Laser-cut Levaté logo, keychain fob, T-shirt, autographed picture, thank-you note, sticker, and social media shoutout, all bundled in a nice Levaté branded bag.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Dinner with the team. On us. Well technically, on you since you're donating, but you know..

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Levaté preorder. Receive a Levaté unit once they are ready to ship!

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Sponsorship. Get your name or logo on the T-shirt! Great for businesses.

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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    Premium Sponsorship. Get your name or logo on the T-shirt and on the front page of levatelift.com, with a clickable link to your homepage. Awesome for businesses!

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  13. Select this reward

    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    Custom Levaté Unit. Ensures you get one of the very first beta-unit devices, in a color of your choice, and potentially with your name and a custom message stamped on it,

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Funding period

- (40 days)