BLACKTOP NATIONALS Booth Showcasing Prototype
This has been a long road. My design engineer, a few days ago, said "I admire your tenacity on this project." I come up with this idea in 2001. I used the number 22, 1/24 scale cast car and cut the top off using cardboard for the liner and put foam between body and liner. This "cooler" setting on a shelf in my living kept crying out, "do something". I finally acted upon it in 2010 by filing for a patent which was granted in 2011. I had an artist draw my concept of my RACECARCooler while my patent was pending. (note upper right corner note "patent pending") I had a friend in the sign business that did sign work for a beer distributor. I asked him if he could get me one of those pool table lights that was the NASCAR number 40 Coors Lite. I butchered that light removing the light and metal frame under it. I cut the top off and made hinges out of strips from a plastic milk jug. I then cut a cardboard box down to size for the liner. Great Stuff foam insulation was sprayed between the car body and the box. AND NOW I have a "sophisticated" RACECARCooler. I took my sophisticated cooler to Charlotte and started calling on race teams. Most were polite but blew me off. One race team VP of licensing invited me into their board room and visited with me. He has since opened his own company and works with licensing all kinds of products and is now on "our" team and will help secure licensing. ANOTHER BIG WOW!!!! In 2012 I checked, on the Internet, dozens plastic molding companies were found just to see how processes worked and to learn what I needed to do. I cold called on a molding business in McPherson, KS just because it was within driving distance (118 miles). The guy was very gracious and showed me around and explained some of the processes. They only did injection molding of smaller parts and he thought I might need blow molding. He told me of a design engineer in Wichita, KS that I might talk with. I have been so very fortunate to "fall" into meeting some really great and knowledgeable people. Turns out this guy (I believe) is one of the foremost cooler designers in the world. He has done contract design work for "the big three" in the cooler business. ANOTHER WOW!! ME making a contact like that. He did CAD drawings for a prototype. I had literally no money, but did round up enough for a prototype by selling a car and other stuff. Bids for a prototype ranged from $15,000 to $100,000 with most around $25,000. I had to go with the cheap bid or not at all. The company kept telling it would be done tomorrow after the initial 6 week time it was supposed to be done. "Tomorrow" went on for about 2 weeks. I am sure I was not very patient because I am sooooooo excited about my project. So after 2 weeks of tomorrow's I drove to Tulsa, Oklahoma to pickup my prototype arriving mid morning. "Not quite ready!!!" At closing time they worked overtime. "Just can not finish. Have it tomorrow morning" YEAH SURE. I did get it late the next afternoon It is very fragile. Not long after a hinge broke. They wanted $175 for 1 new hinge. I checked around for 3D printers and located a guy in Wichita, KS that printed me a half dozen hinges for $10. (not each but all for $10) I have been back to Charlotte 3 times since then with my real prototype. I believe 3 major race teams will grant me licensing when you, "our RACECARCooler family", raise the money. Of course all other teams will want to grant licensing when they see the tremendous demand you have proven exists. I have visited dozens, maybe hundreds, of money people. (went to Warren Buffet's office building-I was not let in to see him) The wealthy want a proven business to invest in. The well off will tell me that most everyone will throw water on your fire. Those rich say do not listen just believe in yourself and prove them wrong. Well here I am "family" let us, you and me, prove them wrong. I have interviewed 400 fans at Kansas Speedway carrying my prototype around. 100%, that is right, all 400 said "WOW, that is sooooo cool, where can I get one." (quotes varies from fan to fan.) I have been to Daytona 3 times promoting my cooler. I had a photo of my prototype and asked at that driver's memorabilia truck if I could bring my prototype there to show fans. The lady called 2 guys and they stated they needed to tell another guy. He came and saw the photo and was very gruff and brisk talking. He ordered a guy with the ATV mule to take me to my car and bring the prototype to him. He very much liked it. "Get in touch with me when get this thing going" My understanding was he is THE PERSON in charge of all concessions at all NASCAR race tracks. ANOTHER WOW!! I got married in 2014 to a wonderful lady. She is a Realtor. I got involved in R E investing and did not do much from December 2014 until September 2018. I am personally so NOT techy. I come in contact with a wonderful young lady that "knows" she can manage a successful campaign. Don't you just love confidence? She is confident! I am confident! NOW I would like "MY FAMILY" to share that confidence. In a few months you WILL HAVE your very own driver's RACECARCooler. Wheeeeew! HERE WE GO !
Risks and challenges
Shipping is a nightmare. Kickstarter's venue does not include how I would like to fairly charge for shipping. I would like for Kickstarter to allow me to include a shipping chart and each backer would fairly pay their own shipping. I originally projected a $3,000,000 goal. That is needed to break even on 42,000 RACECARCoolers that I project for this campaign. The cheapest way of shipping is USPS. From the midwest shipping will range from $20 to $60 for 48 states only to the different shipping zones. Alaska and Hawaii is $215 considerably more than any reward contribution. So if I average and have the $20 backer pay $20 more ($40) of the $60 backer that somehow doesn't seem fair to me. How can I send a RACECARCooler to Alaska and Hawaii where shipping charge alone is $215. Should I just hope that Alaska and Hawaii will not have very many contributors. Hope and a guess probably would not be a good business decision. I can not get an answer from Kickstarter. Their venue only says United States shipping which I interpret is not allowed to be broken down. Shipping turns my $3,000,000 goal into needing $5,000,000. 42,000 coolers @ $40 equals $1,680,000, then Kickstarter charges 8% (5% fee + 3% cc + 30 cent transaction) 8% $134,400 + 30 cents $12,600 It all adds up to almost $2,000,000 or precisely $1,827,000. Will the $173,000 be enough cushion to cover Alaska and Hawaii. What if not? I do not have that kind of money to make up the difference. Manufacturers and vendors bids are all taking shape, that with proper assessment I can include without too much risk. We are receiving bids for all production steps, but nothing finalized until I have the money. Tooling for the molds, molder, foamer, decals, decaling, assembly, boxes, shipping, potential building leases, all these are being negotiated. As a backer I might think, $5,000,000, what a money grubber out to take me. It all adds up $1,827,000 shipping $500,000 tooling, molders are not set up to foam- foaming equipment $250,000, boxes @$3, $126,000, decaling $42,000, licensing for race teams and _________,$750,000, manufacture @$80-$3,365,000. TOTAL $6,860,000. Blow molders are making certain they are covered for costs and a profit. I have even been told, "Let me know if we are not competitive". The only cost of the above that might have wiggle room is manufacturing. I am believing with the Kickstarter success that blow molders will get competitive. "Can you produce a RACECARCoolers for $50?" They smile and say, "we'll see what the numbers look like". Over 4 years ago a cooler project on Kickstarter had a $50,000 goal. Over $13,000,000 was pledged. I wondered "what if" just the goal had been met. How could the rewards have been produced and delivered? Don't I have to cover costs in my goal to deliver? That is a tremendous challenge. It will be great to just break even on this campaign. I will have the start and can proceed to make a profit once started. I am thinking "this old life long farmer" can negotiate and get our RACECARCoolers going for our goal plus I have a moneyed person that has given a soft commitment to finance some overage. Family help me find competitive places to cut costs. I'm serious you are a working part of this campaign.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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- (45 days)