Hello everyone.... thanks for checking out the project!
Bottlejak is a wildly unique bottle stopper design... equally at home on a bottle of wine, whiskey, or olive oil. The curving, slotted main body is CNC machined from solid aluminum and has a bottle opener incorporated into it. The plug is CNC turned from stainless steel and incorporates custom designed and molded silicone rubber seal rings.
Bottlejak is my attempt #2 at funding a bottle stopper on Kickstarter. Stopper attempt #1 was 'Spoke Stopper', which came close but failed to meet the funding goal late last year. I've had a lot of requests to relaunch Spoke Stopper, and while I think it's a really neat design, I just felt like moving on and trying a different design... something even more different than the norm.
With Spoke Stopper, I featured what I called a 'top down' design... a design producing a low profile when installed with the majority of the stopper below the bottle top. The stopper also was self standing. For the bottlejak, I looked to keep these two features. I decided to move from a symmetrical design to a design that was not. In doing so, the shape became unexpected and fluid. I've incorporated a large central slot as a signature 'spoke' feature.
The self standing ability and bottle opener feature make it a great object to leave sitting out on a kitchen island or bar.
For the 'plug' portion of the stopper, I had originally planned to use an available off-the-shelf part. I found several available online... but after testing these, I felt I could make a better one... and so I designed one myself. I designed the plug to be machined from solid stainless steel. The custom molded silicone rubber o-rings were designed with edgy, triangular flanges to provide a wide range of sealing to various bottle sizes. I stayed away from a harsh black rubber color and went with a custom grey to compliment the steel.
Those who followed along on my previous projects know that I have a fondness for marking... a machined 'dot' on Spoke Pencil and stamping of the logo on Strong Like Bull Magnets. For Bottlejak, I had a custom stamp made that combines the Spoke logo with the manufactured date... 2013. I think it adds a nice touch of permanence. I thought I'd mark the bottom near the bottle opener feature... but I think I like a 'cleaner' look better, so I'm thinking I will move this to a less prominent location near the underside where the plug attaches.
The plan is to offer a few different finishes....
1) As Machined Aluminum... because machining marks are cool. Sharp edges are not... so I'll add a couple pieces of wet sand to allow you to 'tune up' the edges and polish up the sides to your liking.
2) Tumbled then Anodized Medium Grey... kind of an indstrial metal look
3) Tumbled then Anodized Black... for those who like a stealthy look
4) Tumbled then Anodized Red... for a bit of flair... red anodize always looks sharp
I'll update with finish pictures as the funding period moves forward... there will certainly be lots of pics before you have to choose at the end of the project. If funding goes extra well, I may look to add some finish options.
With your help, there will be enough funds to move forward with the quantities needed to produce the two custom machined metal parts and three custom molded rubber parts at a reasonable cost. As always, the challenge of relatively small scale manufacturing is to get costing to a workable level... but the reward is a truly unique, custom object... something that gets harder and harder to find in today's mass produced world.
Thanks again for checking out the project!
Risks and challenges
If bottlejak meets funding, it will be my 3rd Kickstarter project to move forward into fulfillment. I gained great experience with the Kickstarter process on my first 2 projects. You can check out Spoke Pencils and Strong Like Bull Magnets to see that the projects were reasonably on-time and well received. There is always the potential for unexpected developments. However, with my experience and the design and prototyping work that has been done to date on bottlejak, I'm confident that the project can be executed per the timeline target.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)