The story of the Aero-Tray
My work and interests in life keep me mobile and often on many planes and trains. I am artist and divide my time between San Francisco and Los Angeles my subject matter is mostly landscapes. About 4 years ago, I was traveling, and I couldn’t use my laptop when the person in front of me reclined his seat. I sat there for the 4-hour flight thinking there was a lot of strain on my hand while holding a book or my iPhone to watch a film, at 40,000 feet up in the air, a light-blub went off in my head.
Soon after I began testing several mock-ups, started making drawings and filing for a patent.
As I traveled, people took notice, and I added numerous upgrades and features as I went along and filed other patents that are pending.
I began to call it the Aero-Tray. This handy workstation platform can do a lot. It will double the amount of usable space where space is a premium; raise your lap-top providing for a better viewing experience reducing strained eyes, wrists and neck.
The Aero-Tray's angle support counteracts the reclining seat in front of you reclaiming your ability to use your lap-top computer again. You’ll find that the Aero-Tray’s transformative abilities really place this in a category of an essential travel tool rather than a travel accessory - it’s a travel necessity!
The two tier system that can separate food and beverage from personal electronic items or other personal traveling items.
STRECH GOAL: 50,000.00 NECK PILLOW INCLUDED!
Hello Aero-Tray Backers!!!! and friends of the Aero-Tray!!!! It's happening we have reached our funding goal and with the remaining time left!!! If we can reach our stretch goal of 50,000.00, all the backers with a $49.00 pledge and above will also receive the Neck Pillow with your current reward pledge of 49.00 and above, this is an added incentive for you helping make the Aero-Tray a reality! Lets make this stretch goal happen! Let you're friends know! and your friends of friends know!! and even if they aren't so friendly know!!!... An Aero-Tray will make them even more friendly!!!!!!! More friendly people I love it. It seems that FB is giving us the most traffic. Copy and post our Kickstarter link or tweet if that is something you have talents with: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/737096508/aero-tray-make-the-most-of-your-mobile-lifestyle
How we are going to make this happen!
The first step was to identify a production partner (LifeGear Design) that has the depth, experience, and history in the travel industry to finalize product development, choose an appropriate factory, have a full scale operation including warehouse and order fulfillment, and leverage industry relationships for sales and marketing.
Once the relationship with LifeGear Design was cemented, they met with the factory in China to perform an audit to confirm all Legal and Code Of Conduct compliance and to create the first handmade prototype on site. Soon after, the CAD artwork for molds and tooling was received and approved. The factory issued a price quote of $20k for mold costs, hence, kicking off Kickstarter.
Once the money is raised, the factory will begin the development of the molds, which could take up to 30 days. It requires a combination of 5 different molds made of steel.
We will be able to generate a few samples for testing and quality control within days, and at that point if needed, make all final adjustments.
During the 30 days of mold development, all other raw materials will be sourced, approved and ordered, including but not limited to: faux leather in two color, elastic strap with Aero-Tray logo, and packaging. With the final approved mold and all raw materials on hand, the factory will begin the first production: after the Injection molding process takes place, some of the plates will be covered in faux leather and some will remain in ABS (Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene); followed by assembling, quality control, testing and packaging. This will take approximately 30 days.
Final production could be ready as early as 60 days after the mold cost is attained and shipping to USA will add another 21 days.
The Factory is located in Shenzhen, has 200 workers, 80 mold makers, and 20 engineers/R & D, approximately 20,000 square feet of production space. They have obtained the ISO 9001 and EU S8000 certificates. They are producing for top international electronic and automobile brands in the US, France, Germany and Japan. Their commitment to Aero-Tray includes a willingness to produce as few as 1000 units and as many as 10,000 units/month.
Norman Korpi: The artist, creator, patent holder, director of the project.
Magi Raible: President/CEO, founder of LifeGear Design, has 31 years experience in the outdoor and travel industry doing product development, in-house manufacturing, and international sourcing, spending 10 years at The North Face and 20 years at KIVA. She is coordinating team efforts, operations and resources, legal, setting up customer meetings, hiring sales reps, and arranging trade shows.
Veronica Lerer-Woerz: VP of Global Sourcing at LifeGear Design, she has 10 years experience in the outdoor and travel industry doing spec writing and sourcing for KIVA and now leads the sourcing and quality control team at LifeGear Design. Veronica went to China to visit the factory, wrote production specs, negotiated production tooling costs and unit prices, and has daily communication with the factory.
We will ship the first run of Aero-Tray by the end of December. This is our timetable:
- September: · Product development - Completed. · Factory selection, inspection and compliance - Completed. · Sign off on CAD drawings for Aero-Tray molds - Completed.
- October: · Kickstarter Campaign - Started · Source raw materials, approve lab dips, mock ups for packaging, and logo embroideries and prints – Started · Review Pledge incentives and update Kickstarter as needed - Started
- November: · Start production of mold – Pending · Place first order with factory - Pending · Order raw materials, packaging and other trims - Pending · Approve mold and final sample - Pending
- December: · Start production of Aero-Tray- Pending · Production line QC and testing - Pending · First order of Aero-Tray production finalized - Pending · Ship first Purchase order to LifeGear Design Fulfillment Center - Pending · Ship all First Priority orders placed through Kickstarter- Pending · Begin assembly for second batch priority - Pending
- January 2014: · Ship second priority batch and personally sign limited editions - Pending January – March 2014: · Ship out remaining Aero-Tray incentives – Pending
How to set up an Aero-Tray
The Aero-Tray has multiple positions:
Aero-Tray Product Features
- US. patented 8,424,464 and other patents pending vertical Z frame design expands to create a bi-level workstation that can separate food and beverage from electronics such as lap-top computers or tablets or hand held personal items.
- Hands free ergonomic support for a total range of lap-top computers, I-books, PC’s, notebooks, etc.
- Manually adjustable ergonomic incline positions to be used for a hands free book stand.
- Retractable holding plate that keeps items from slipping on the incline angle and conforms to the surface panel when not in use.
- Lightweight est 1.65Lbs,
- ABS core fused with a poly-blend faux leather fabric.
- 14w x 9 3/4H x 1/1/4thickness-expands to vertical 6"
- Retractable beverage shelf.
- Additional cup holder.
- Forward mounting strap that connects to seat back tray which doubles as a locked strap for the Aero-Tray when not in use.
- Forms a case for many personal items in the interior.
- Rubberized feet for stability.
- Standard soda can holding slot helps prevent slippage.
- Separates user from heat from a lap-top computer in use on the lap or resting in bed.
- Reduces wrist fatigue when in use with a lap-top orientation.
- Reduces neck fatigue and upper body strain.
Aero-Tray comes in two colors
The sky's the limit
I have been supporting this journey over several years with the sale of my artwork. Funny thing is, when thinking about my life, I always thought I would make an invention and that would help me paint. The Aero-Tray has been in development over the last 4 years. I filed for a utility patent back in 2009 and in last April 2013 I was granted the US PATENT. Yay!
My art representation in Los Angeles at Blackman Cruz , friends and family have been so supportive of my efforts along the way. Blackman Cruz has released several of my works, which have been collected by corporations and private collections and museums around the world. In this once in a lifetime opportunity, I am going to release the work as reward incentives, which will be well below their listed prices at the artist’s cost. The paintings in series 47 are of the sky and they seem to make that magical connection for many. The cost of shipping the work will not be included. If you desire to support my efforts through the purchase of an original painting, they will return to their market value at Blackman Cruz range from 8,500.00 to 14,500.00 because they believe in me.
Original Artwork Incentives
What People Are Saying
- To the Friends and Family without you nothing is possible or worth while.
- Kickstarter: I have seen so many lives changed for the better! Damn I wish would have come up with this!
- Siren Studios
- Donna&Glenn Korpi
- LifeGear Design
- Roy Mussatti
- Gogebic Community College
- Alumni and support of Williamston, Michigan
- Alumni and support of Interlochen Arts Academy
- Alumni and support of Cooper Union
- The Legends
- Sue and Don Crum
- Ann Raderer
- And supporters like you! Helping me, helping the world be a more enjoyable experience
Risks and challenges
1. There could be additional correction with the injection ABS core when the sample returns in the 30 day cycle after the kick starter this would create a 35-45 delay in a reward incentive shipping.
2. The current weight on the sample shown in the pictures and video is 3lbs with our goal of getting this to 1.5 pounds there could be a slight difference in actual weight.
3. The overall thickness of the Aero-Tray is currently greater then an inch and the goal is to reduce this by 40%.
4. We are still anticipating that the interior space will be able to support many varieties of tablets and i-pads, however by reducing the thickness of the current model, the thinner version of the Aero-Tray will not be able to incase a tablet of certain thickness, we are looking at this feature as a gravy feature.
- (33 days)