Aura Optics is the brainchild of Schaeffer Warnock and Jake Nelson. Both avid skiers with backgrounds in the winter sports industry in Salt Lake City, Utah. Optics are vital to winter sports: if you can’t see, you can’t ride. Doesn’t matter how big the storm is; without good optics you’re going to have a bad day. That's why we decided to take matters into our own hands and create the equipment we needed. Aura Optics is the result.
At Aura we understand that skiing/riding is about so much more than just the ride down. That's why we designed a goggle that not only gives you the clarity you need on the way down the mountain, but also on the way up and everywhere in between: Fog free. We do this in five ways:
- Spherical Lenses These provide a wider range of vision, minimize distortion and offer superior protection against fog.
- AuraFlow A total of five vents let your goggles and your face breathe, preventing moisture and heat buildup.
- HighFit A fit which sits higher on your face leaves your nose and mouth free to breathe easy.
- SoftFit TPU frames that are 30% softer allows them to be more easily flexible in order to give you a better fit for comfort and wind blocking.
- HandsOn To ensure that you are fog free everywhere on the mountain we double down on the anti-fog. We apply not only the preliminary manufactured anti-fog coat, but also a secondary treatment. Applied by hand to each and every lens.
Each and every person looks at the world in their own way. Why shouldn’t your optics do the same? Here at Aura we know that everyone has their own style; you can see it in the way we ride. That's why our goggles allow for easy change of lenses and straps. That way you have what you need to ride in any condition, with color options so you look good doing it. Our easy switch system allows for lenses and straps to be swapped out, mountainside, without taking your mitts off. No need to freeze your hands just so you can see better or change up your look. Our lenses and straps are completely interchangeable so changing it up is quick, easy, and best of all, affordable.
We are, first and foremost, a company created by those who ride, for those who ride. We created optics because we felt that there was a better alternative to what is out there, because we demanded more of our equipment than we were getting. To ensure we stay on the right track, we tested our products ourselves and to be absolutely sure that they will put up with all the abuse they will be put through, we had them tested again and again by professional athletes. We involve our athletes and our customers in our design process to ensure that we meet their needs and provide the highest quality optics available.
Around a year ago, while working at ski shops, we noticed a huge price break in goggles. Either customers shelled out and bought a high end pair of goggles, or they paid much less but sacrificed hugely in performance. When customers did pay top dollar for high end equipment, they still found themselves limited in color options or unable to find exactly what they wanted. There had to be a better way. As our own collections of goggles continued to grow, we became increasingly frustrated with even top of the line equipment. Specifically with the fogging problem. We found ourselves taking two or three pairs for the day because we knew they would fog. We decided that if we had this much trouble then others had to be having the same problems. We set out to make a high performance goggle that performed better, cost less and was more customizable than any other goggle on the market. We determined that we could do better than what was out there and so we did.
We started from scratch, carefully analyzing existing goggles to find what worked and what didn’t. Pulling from our own experience and our own equipment, we designed and tested again and again.
We selected a variety of athletes who ride in very different ways on very different terrain and encouraged them to push the limits of what they expected from their optics. And push they did.
We’ve thrown our goggles through more abuse than any pair should ever get, and they have performed exceptionally. Showing us that our dream can be realized, that equipment that provides not only high performance but also customizability and versatility can be made. Now, we are ready to enter production. Which is where we need you. Our goal is to raise $8000 so that we can enter mass production and hit the ground running for a successful 2014/2015 season. That way, we are able to cover our production costs, fill our existing pre-orders and show the world that affordable, customizable, high performance goggles are a reality, and that, with your contributions, they are here to stay.
Risks and challenges
Our prototypes have already been tested rigorously and our product is sound. Problems for us may arise from supply lines, specifically in streamlining packaging so that we don't have to package everything ourselves. Worst case scenario however is that we do it ourselves, in house with our team, which we are prepared to do if necessary and then reevaluate for the next season. Manufacturing delays are another potential risk area, we have accounted for this risk by allowing ourselves two additional months of buffer time between deadlines and season launch dates. Overall however we are very prepared and have set aside adequate contingency resources and plans to tackle any problems or obstacles which may arise. One aspect of our specific industry is the off season this allows for a time to recover and reevaluate before jumping into the next season. While sales are still made in the off season the huge drop in activity allows for it to serve as a period to analyze, regroup and plan for the coming season.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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