My side threading needle is ready to go big time, but I need your help to do that. I have been working on getting my side threading needle to market for over five years. In that time I have had many successes, but I have yet to be able to sell big box wholesale because the cost of manufacturing my needle is too high.
While it looks like I have "made it" as an inventor I still drive a 12 year old car with a plastic strap for the door handle and a driver's side window that won't roll back up if I open it. (This is problematic when going through toll booths when I drive from state fairs to sewing shows to other events in the rain.) Most of the time the car doesn't have seats inside because I need the space to transport my giant sized needle and thread.
I was in the final steps of foreclosure in 2010 and have had to sell family heirlooms and even a dog to pay bills. Start up costs totaled over $500,000 and I am still paying back much of that. Fortunately, just when I thought all was lost, I received enough royalty income to help dig myself back to a near break even point. But that is coming to an end.
I need tooling and equipment to economically manufacture larger volumes and to be able to manufacture a wider variety of sizes and types of needles.
Here are some of the things I have achieved so far:
February 2010: The US Patent office featured the Spiral Eye Needle in the first edition of The Inventor's Eye. The U.S. utility patent has been issued and patents are pending in many other countries.
August 2009: ABC nightline featured my needle because of the potential savings this needle design would bring the medical industry. Replacing the single use, prethreaded, needles currently used in surgeries, with my quick threading reusable needle could save hundreds of dollars per surgery. Pre-threaded disposable needles have a limited amount of suture material on each one.This means any one surgery could use multiple prethreaded needles. If they come unthreaded during a procedure, the surgeon has a problem. My needle would allow for quick and easy rethreading. It also could be used for multiple surgeries because it can be sterilized like any other surgical tool. Granted, I won't be able to make the fine tiny needles used for heart surgery, for example, but I would be able to make the most commonly used needles.
Winner of several awards from the 2008 Minnesota Inventors Congress Invention and Idea show.
Winner of the 2009 Craft and Hobby Association New Product Innovation award.
Featured in numerous periodicals and blogs from around the world. One recent article was in Mary Corbet's popular sewing blog, Needle N Thread.
Yes there are other easy to thread needles. They have an opening at the top of the eye. This means they come unthreaded while sewing and shred your thread when trying to get the thread into it. And they are not as easy to thread as the Spiral Eye design. They were invented 150 years ago. Technology and manufacturing have come a long way since then.
There is also the One Second Needle, which is a version of my needle that is made in China. I licensed the rights to Telebrands. The One Second needle is not of the quality of the Spiral Eye Needle and only comes in two of the larger sizes. It was a great way to prove the viablity of my needle in the impulse shopping demographics. That licensing agreement is coming to an end.
The needle industry sells billions and billions of hand sewing needles each year. All of them manufactured overseas, except the Spiral Eye needle. My improved, patented version of the needle could replace up to half of them.
My ultimate goal is having the ability to make a less expensive, yet still high quality, side threading needle that is available wherever traditional needles are sold. I would like to do that while also making them in the USA.
Because I tapped into all my financial options in the first few years of my business, I no longer have the credit or ability to get financing through traditional channels. Without the ability to make needles more cost effectively, I fear I will have to give up on what has so far been a very promising business.
SPIRAL EYE SIDE THREADING NEEDLES ARE THE ONLY SEWING NEEDLE MADE IN AMERICA. THEY ARE MADE FROM HIGH GRADE SURGICAL STAINLESS STEEL (WON'T RUST. WON'T BREAK. HAVE NO NICKEL PLATING) THEY ARE A HIGH QUALITY, PRECISION MADE PRODUCT THAT WILL LAST AS LONG AS YOU HAVE THEM....LIKE THINGS USED TO BE MADE.
SOME OF THE REWARDS:
Risks and challenges
The biggest challenge when making the unique open eye design is cost of manufacturing.
The most common size slot is only .005" wide. Stamping processes don't do well with such a small size opening. This means the eye slot has to be done with EDM, laser or other higher cost technology. This is not how traditional needles are made and it would require major changes to that process.
Another challenge is that the geometry of the needle itself has to be exactly right or the needle will catch and snag the material it is sewing. I have identified that geometry and am able to keep tight tolerances in the manufacturing of the American made Spiral Eye Needle. Traditional needle manufacturing equipment is not designed to make this geometry.
$100,000 (actually about $35,00 is what I will end up with after costs of the rewards, shipping and fees) will get the tooling done to adapt my current process so my current manufacturer can do higher volumes at a lower cost.
It would take an additional $250,000+ to create equipment made specifically for the job so I would be able to handle even larger volumes, faster and cheaper. Eventually I will need this kind of dedicated equipment to supply the global marketplace.
I have no problem with anyone pledging more than th recommended minimum amount for a reward. (For example, $30 for the reward of a set of three needles would get you 2 sets of those needles, as long as when you get your survey you let me know that is what you want and that you aren't just chosing to donate more to my project.) Kickstarter has approved up to 10 multiples of my needles.
If you want specific size needles that are not offered in the rewards, you can purchase them from my website, http://www.spiraleyeneedles.com/ but, please, if you choose to do that, donate at least the minimum $1 donation to my project so Kickstarter gets rewarded for the service they are providing.
To encourage you to aquire my needles through the Kickstarter website I have made the pledge amount for a reward lower than the price I sell those needles for on my website. By pledging through Kickstarter, you are also helping Kickstarter stay in business and help other creators reach their goals.
I did not know that you could not pledge to more than one item/amount. I have added rewards with the most popular needle combinations purchased on my website as a set with the needle case. If none of those match your needs, you can order from my website http://www.SpiralEyeNeedles.com. Again, if you do that, please donate at least $1 to my project so Kickstarter gets a cut for providing this website.
Get one of the ORIGINAL, FULLY MACHINED Spiral Eye Needles. This "SE-1" is the one that started it all. Since these were made, I have improved the geometry and offer many other sizes, but this one still sells for $5.50 on my website because there are crafters who like it. I will be dicontinuing these after they are gone. Made in America!
For jusr $10 I will send you one of THE original SE-1 needles with hand ground points (Made using a Dremmel to turn the needle one direction while pressing against the turning of the stone on a slow wet grinder). I wore deep grooves into the hard stone frantically making thousands of them when I unexpectedly got a booth at the 2008 Minnesota State Fair. (At that time I had no manufacturing process to put the point on them.) Fortunately my manufacturer - who had put the eyes into pieces of wire with an EDM - purchased equipment to make the points in time, so only a limited number of these have ever been sold.
WHAT ABOUT AN ENGRAVED METAL CASE WHERE YOU CAN KEEP THOSE NEEDLES?
For a pledge of $20 I will send you a shiney metal needle case, engraved with the words: Spiral Eye Needles. This business card size case is empty, but is a great way to protect and display your other Spiral Eye Needles rewards.
This is a great add-on to your pledge for Spiral Eye Needles.
Please, limit one case per pledge. No multiples on this because of the cost of shipping is so high. Thanks.
PROTOTYPES...For $22 you can have 2 different prototypes that never made it to market. These are the mistakes. Errors in geometry. My miscommunications with the manufacturer. They are the blood, sweat and tears of the inventing process. Limit one set of two prototypes per pledge, please. These are collector's items. Someday they will be in a museum. You can have them in May.
A METAL CASE with ONE SEWING MACHINE NEEDLE and THE THREE MOST POPULAR HAND SEWING NEEDLES. This set gets you ready to store your easy to thread needles in a safe place separate from your other needles.
A COMPLETE SET OF THE CURRENTLY MADE SPIRAL EYE SIDE THREADING SEWING NEEDLES. One each: size 8, 6, 4 sharps & one size 8 quilting needle AND one each: size 13, 18, 20, 22, 24 Chenille points AND one each: 13, 20, 22, 24, and 26 Tapestry points ... that is 14 different size hand sewing needles with my unique and patented eye in them. A $77 value. Made in America.
YOUR BEST DEAL: FOR $100 GET THE ENGRAVED NEEDLE CASE ("Spiral Eye Needles") CONTAINING THE COMPLETE SET OF 14 HAND SEWING NEEDLES & A SPIRAL EYE SEWING MACHINE NEEDLE & THE ORIGINAL SE-1. That's 16 different Spiral Eye needles all in a beautiful engraved metal case.
If you pledge $10,000 I will give you one of my giant needles. It is over 3 feet long and weighs over 4 pounds. Made to scale using the same euipment as the little ones. I only have two. They go with me to every show. One was featured in the ad on television but to be honest I don't know which one, they are identical.