About this project
"At first I thought, 'oh great, another hipster bike thing.' But the Buca Boot is quite remarkable in its use of space and materials." - UnderConsideration
"It's the stuff city-cycling dreams are made of." - Refinery 29
Nothing beats the convenience of riding your bike. I do it everyday. But I really hate worrying about how to carry around all the stuff that comes with a busy life. What if it rains? What if I get cold? What if I want to go to that party later? What if I need to pick up groceries or grab a six-pack?
The Buca Boot answers those questions. It holds everything from a pair of shoes to a laptop to a case of beer. It keeps your things dry in the rain and safe when you walk away. Did we mention it looks good, too?
Over the past year, I’ve worked with an amazing team to create the prototype you see here. With your help, we can bring the Buca Boot to life and make it easier to choose your bike everyday.
The idea for Buca Boot was born while cycling the streets of London. I was always going somewhere — to classes at LSE, to a museum, to the pub, or all three in a row. Every activity required me to carry different things. I felt like a pack mule taking it all on my bike.
I started thinking … wouldn’t it be great if I could treat my bike the way that everyone treats a car trunk (or ‘boot,’ as they call it in Britain), where you can just toss a gym bag or an extra pair of shoes in the trunk, no problem?
Over the last four years, I've enlisted various designers and engineers to realize my vision. We worked through iteration after iteration just trying to nail the combination of features that make the Buca Boot different: security, weather resistance, and a flexible lid system. In 2013, the final team came together and made something we wanted to share with the world.
Who We Are
Our team shares a passion for biking and beautiful, purposeful design.
Kathryn Carlson is a big-thinking economist who lives in Boston and bikes 365 days a year. She had the original spark for Buca Boot and brought the team together to make it a reality.
Tomorrow Lab designs and engineers products from its Manhattan studio and was founded by Dean DiPietro, Pepin Gelardi, and Theodore Ullrich. With more than 35 years of collective experience, they know how to manage the manufacturing process and bring a new product to launch.
Guts & Glory is Faun Chapin and Meg Paradise, a creative collaborative that specializes in crafting brands that use storytelling to build connections.
Where is Your Money Going?
We funded the prototype with our own savings and lots of sweat equity. But setting up a full manufacturing process is expensive — we can’t do it alone. The biggest expenses are manufacturing the lids and setting up the molds to make the base and hinge/locking system. Until we get large enough for huge orders (come on REI, order 10,000!), even the material cost adds up.
The Manufacturing Process: Next Steps
We have already arranged for manufacturers in New York and China to make the base and side panniers (although we’re still looking for ways to make everything here — holler if you’re interested!). Once we secure funding, we can pay for the largest fixed cost of the project: the molds for the plastic base of the boot and hinge system.
We’re working with an apparel manufacturer in New York City to make the side pannier bags. They produced the nylon canvas panniers for our prototypes and have patterns ready for a larger production run.
The lids are the final piece. We are working with a shop in Western Massachusetts to test marine grade mahogany and sourcing and testing bamboo from suppliers in China. After living through a Massachusetts winter with the potential lids, we will decide which is best.
A huge heartfelt thank you to all the family and friends who have provided support over the many years of this development, the wonderful advice from other mentors, entrepreneurs and cyclists and of course our team! With special thanks to our awesome videographer, Carlo Paolo Espiritu of wildnice fame for his talent, time and devotion to this project!
Risks and challenges
Throughout the process, we’ve done our best to identify and mitigate potential problems. The current prototype has been in development for the past nine months. We’ve all attached it to our bikes, ridden around, and made improvements at each step along the way. Now we feel confident the Buca Boot is ready for a wider audience.
Of course there’s always some risk when making a product with multiple parts and materials, particularly when it comes to delays in the supply chain. We promise to keep you updated as we finalize the production schedule with our vendors. We’ll communicate every step of the way and be transparent about any problems or delays.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
The Buca Boot is shipping to Europe! We've gotten enough support from Europe to make the shipping feasible. Because Kickstarter doesn't let us edit shipping options for rewards that are already posted we added a new reward just for European supporters - the European Buca Boot. The plastic top boot is also available to ship to Europe - though you'll have to add $30 to the $145 reward level for international shipping.
We'd still like to send the Buca Boot to everywhere else in the world too. We still need to hit that critical mass though. If you're located outside of North America or Europe please let us know you're interested by filling out this form and we'll let you know as soon as we can make the Buca Boot available to you.
This is a question that has been coming up in a few places. The answer is no, the canvas panniers attach to the outside of the main compartment. The main compartment of the Buca Boot is surrounded on 5 sides by durable molded plastic, in fact its one solid piece. The lids lock in place to create a secure storage area.
While the Boot itself is secure, we've heard this question from people who own bike racks that are easy to remove. We're actively exploring ways to make existing racks more secure, such as including security bolts or special screws to replace those issued with the rack. Rest assured, we will address it in some way and are happy to hear your suggestions, too!
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