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An innovative product for everyone to conserve freshwater and do the right thing in the midst of drought.
An innovative product for everyone to conserve freshwater and do the right thing in the midst of drought.
102 backers pledged $20,849 to help bring this project to life.

About

Raindrop Box: Saving Rain? No droubt. project video thumbnail
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Raindrop Box: Saving Rain? No droubt.

$20,849

102

 Collect, store, and utilize rainwater from your home, for your garden. All you need is a Box!

Simulated image of the Raindrop Box 50 linked to a downspout, with a hose connected at the bottom ready to nourish some plants!
Simulated image of the Raindrop Box 50 linked to a downspout, with a hose connected at the bottom ready to nourish some plants!

                               See more images on raindropbox.com!

 In the last year, Co-Founder & CEO Georgia Reid was working in the Ecuadorian Andes within a community freshwater development organization. Improving her skills and global literacy within the field of potable water systems, she knew she wanted to further apply her experience and imagination to solving the water crisis in her homeland of California. She teamed up with the brilliant UCLA-trained engineer, Ali Salahuddin, and the Raindrop Box movement was born.

Join our movement towards #nodroubt by investing in a Raindrop Box for an alternative and supplemental seasonal water source. We're committed to creating a more globally sustainable drinking water system, and this is just one step in the right direction. Join us and we'll keep you updated on other exciting water-saving strategies!

 Rainwater or gray water collected from a building can be used to irrigate landscape, flush toilets, and water house plants -- all of which saves drinking water. Especially in drought-stricken areas, harvesting rainwater (a free and sustainable source!) preserves freshwater resources on tap!

It’s Effective.

 The Raindrop Box is simple in concept, but has some innovative features. You divert rainwater from your gutter system (diverter provided) into the connector in the top of the box, to fill it with water:

An animation showing the path a raindrop takes from your downspout to the inlet connector on the Raindrop Box
An animation showing the path a raindrop takes from your downspout to the inlet connector on the Raindrop Box

 [Please note: State Law regarding rainwater catchment policy varies]

 Once the water is captured in the Raindrop Box, you use one of the quick-connect hose fittings (one is pre-installed on each end) to connect your garden hose or irrigation system, or to connect one Box to the next to extend your capacity.  We use standardized fittings so all of your landscaping equipment will just work!

This is one of our working prototypes!
This is one of our working prototypes!
One click!
One click!

It's Adaptable.

 We've designed the Raindrop Box to look good not only on its own but also as a modular system, offering sleek, extendable storage capacity. 

Simulated images showing the modularity of Raindrop Box
Simulated images showing the modularity of Raindrop Box

 The Raindrop Box belongs wherever you need it: displayed alongside your home, fit along a fence (or inside it!), or squirreled behind bushes.

Collecting Water Raindrop Box features an opening on the top surface with a built-in connector to receive water from a downspout diverter via a heavy duty plastic tube (all of which is included within the Starter Package.) 

 No need to worry when the size of a rainstorm is over your capacity to harvest the water — the Box naturally re-diverts water to continue down the downspout once it fills to the top. The fitting might also serve as an input for plumbing a recycled greywater system.

Connected Connecting and disconnecting your Boxes is one click. Small curved outlets on each Box's base let the Boxes sit flush against each other while offering easy access to adjoining plumbing at any time. The valved quick-connectors give you the freedom to detach or add Boxes at any point without draining the system!

An animation showing how quick and simple the included connection system is.  Video below of the real connectors on a working prototype of the Box.
An animation showing how quick and simple the included connection system is. Video below of the real connectors on a working prototype of the Box.
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Using the Water Brass fittings on both ends of the Box are compatible with standard garden hose fittings (3/4 in.) and the Box comes with all caps and valved connectors needed. Using the rainwater to water your plants is easy. Simply hook up a hose to the valve at the bottom of the tank and you’re good to go. 

 If you want more water pressure, simple pumps can also be attached at the bottom to increase water flow. Visit our web site for recommendations on pumps and how to connect rainwater systems to your irrigation systems.

 Be sure to set up the Raindrop Box on a level and sturdy surface, like a concrete slab, cinderblocks, or gravel section. 2 brass fittings are built into the ends of the box and mounting brackets are supplied for safety and earthquake preparedness.

 We’re committed to not only creating adaptive solutions for a changing climate, but contributing to a more sustainable world in the process. Raindrop Boxes are to be made with recycled post-consumer plastics locally in California.

Post-consumer resin pellets made from recycled milk jugs. Photo shared by Envision Plastics.
Post-consumer resin pellets made from recycled milk jugs. Photo shared by Envision Plastics.

 The Raindrop Box 50 Starter Package is the way to get started with a rain collection system. We've made it easy to increase the storage capacity of your system by adding an Extender Package (or a few)!

 Getting Personal! Go ahead and match the color of your Raindrop Box system to that of your house, or wherever it is you envision it! For $175, elect one of these special color options for your Starter Package reward.

Timeline
Timeline

 We are making a big plastic box with connectors on it. This is a straightforward idea, but the devil is in the details. We did most of our prototyping in Solidworks, which is the right way to prototype a large molded plastic part -- there's no way to make one until you make the mold, so how do you prototype something like this?

Functional Prototype There are several kinds of prototypes. One is called a functional prototype, to test out the function of the product. It doesn't have to actually look exactly like the final product, but it should "work like" the final product.

 To prototype a "big plastic box that holds water and has connectors on it", we found an existing big plastic box that was approximately the right size and shape (a recycling bin) and drilled holes in it and added the exact connectors that we intend to build into the product. We hooked everything up and put water in it, found that it leaked a little, fixed a couple of things, and then stopped wasting water once we knew it worked!

Functional prototype
Functional prototype

 Size/Shape Prototype We also wanted to prototype the dimensions and size/shape of the product, so we used furniture-grade PVC connectors and the exact dimensions from the CAD drawings and constructed a model that gives a good sense of the size and shape of the box. It was during this prototyping process (we made two) where we added the little indented details on the ends, to better protect the connectors and to make the design a little more interesting. 

Size/shape prototype
Size/shape prototype

 You can almost imagine the actual boxes when you stand next to this prototype! They hold almost exactly 50 gallons, according to the Solidworks analysis that calculates the interior volume of a shape. They are 36" x 36" x 10.5".

Size / Shape Prototype
Size / Shape Prototype
Dimensions of the Raindrop Box 50
Dimensions of the Raindrop Box 50

 The Raindrop Box has two holes all the way through the middle of it, as you can see in the renderings. One is big and obvious and looks like a raindrop. The other is lower in the middle, and is inconspicuous and 1.35" in diameter.

 These holes are there primarily for structural reasons. They call them "through-holes", and if you imagine the plastic surrounding the holes, you will realize that they actually are like little plastic tunnels or "columns" that connect the front of the box to the back. These provide a brace so that the boxes will not bulge too much when they're full of water. 50 gallons of water weighs 400 pounds, so there is a significant amount of force applied to the insides of the box, which cause the sides to splay outward -- the through-holes counteract this bulging (the lower one is more important, as there's more force toward the bottom of the water column). The upper hole we made beautiful and a design element, but the lower one is purely structural.

 We could not figure out a good way to prototype the "raindrop hole" in the box itself, but the renderings give a good idea of what it will look like.

 We want to be as transparent as possible about where we are in the process of making Raindrop Boxes, and to give our backers a clear picture of what to expect.

 We have real engineers designing this product and it's basically ready to go, beginning with manufacturing. It is difficult to prototype a product this large without having the real thing, but we've run lots of tests with plastic containers, fittings, and computer design simulations to make sure that the product is manufacturable and solid.

 Below is our timeline for production, and the remaining steps. Your funding will help us not only manufacture the boxes, but set up distribution and shipping and packaging and all of the necessary things to get a new product into the world. We have team members who have done this before, and we know what to do, but it needs funding and good execution.

 Note: We are mindful of the product development efforts that underestimate what it takes to ship a product, and who redesign their products after the convincing prototypes got people excited about them. We designed this product from the beginning to be practical and manufacturable. We have gotten multiple bids at every stage, we have multi-sourced all of our components, we have run sophisticated Finite Element Analysis and structural integrity checks on the design, had experts provide advice on design and materials, and vet the whole thing every way we can before production.

 We have registered a UPC bar code with GS1, the national registrar, which makes it possible to put Raindrop Boxes into retail channels, and will aggressively sell them once we get them into the market.

 We are also decisive and experienced, and as a team have shipped MANY successful products, and know how to make the important decisions to finish and support a great new product. We will not only hit our projected schedule, we will exceed your expectations in every way.

  • Finalize sourcing deals with component manufacturers for three parts, including the downspout diverter and quick connectors [Note: these are nice but also easily substituted if we get stuck, without compromising the schedule or quality of the product; there are at least five companies that make these]. We are sourcing the diverters from Oatey, a large manufacturer who has assured us that they can supply the quantities that we project, and beyond. 
  • Create packaging for Starter and Extender packages 
  • Finish the Instructions (Quick Start Guide), which is pretty simple :) 
  • Place the production order with the manufacturer that we have selected in La Mirada, California 
  • Get finalized shipping quotes from UPS for delivering rewards to backers 
  • Get rewards produced, including stickers and T-shirts (we have the designs done and have made a few sample T-shirts for ourselves!)

 We have real engineers designing this product and it's basically ready to go, with the exception of manufacturing.  It is difficult to prototype a product this large without having the real thing, but we've run lots of tests with plastic containers, fittings, and computer design simulations to make sure that the product is manufacturable and solid.

 Below is our timeline for production, and the remaining steps.  Your funding will help us not only manufacture the boxes, but set up distribution and shipping and packaging and all of the necessary things to get a new product into the world.  We have team members who have done this before, and we know what to do, but it needs funding and good execution.

Risks and challenges

There are always risks in bringing any product to market, but we have done a good job of mitigating them.

This is a manufactured product, and we have experienced product design engineers contributing their skills to the project to make sure that the CAD design is manufacturable, and we have multiple quotes from manufacturers to make sure that the boxes can be produced in a high quality way, reliably, and on time. We have some risk in the supply chain for some of the parts we are using, like the rain diverter and quick connectors, but there are multiple options and alternate suppliers and we feel confident that we can meet the demand.

Our design has been vetted as much as possible without actually manufacturing it, but we feel that it is ready, and has been reviewed by three manufacturers and we have incorporated feedback from them on details like making structural changes to the lower part of the boxes so that the weight of the water does not cause the sides to bulge too much. We also had engineers run sophisticated software to perform simulations and Finite Element Analysis of the water pressure to determine if there would be any failures or stresses that were not within the design parameters. We feel confident that the design is solid and ready to go.

Tooling is pricey, so we came to Kickstarter for the funding needed to launch production. We’re anticipating a significant initial demand for Raindrop Boxes by the Kickstarter community. There is a fixed rate at which our manufacturer can produce the Boxes once we place an order (as soon as the campaign reaches its funding goal), but we have full confidence in them fulfilling the order in a timely manner as we have prepared them with an estimated amount of units to produce quickly for the Kickstarter Backer rewards.

Overall, we are fully committed to transparency throughout this process. Communication with our customer about the product's manufacturing and shipment schedule is the most important responsibility we hold in getting the Raindrop Box from its launch on Kickstarter eventually to market, so a high level of customer service and timeliness will be a priority throughout the campaign and beyond.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 10 or more About US$ 10

    You're a kick-ass Kickstarter!

    Thanks for believing in our product and mission!

    You get to rep a "no droubt." STICKER (it's a little bit easier to stick places than a Raindrop Box.)

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    8 backers
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    You put your money where your mouth is!
    (And a shirt where your heart is...)

    As some serious Thanks from us, you'll get a "no droubt." T-SHIRT! It's just like the sticker, but it's organic and you can wear it.

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    24 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 150 or more About US$ 150

    You're more than just a drop in the bucket!

    You will receive one Raindrop Box 50 (Starter Package, Forest). Plus a sticker!

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    20 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 151 or more About US$ 151

    Woodside / Portola Valley Backer. No shipping is added to your pledge, and we deliver it to your house!

    You will receive one Raindrop Box 50 (Starter Package, Forest). Plus a sticker!

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    2 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 175 or more About US$ 175

    You're making a difference, and a statement!

    One Raindrop Box 50, Starter Package of a SPECIAL COLOR! Plus a sticker.

    Choose from the following colors (shown below): Sand, Loam Ocean, Clay, Ash

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    9 backers
    $
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    You are Golden!

    You will be one of the first 20 people EVER to receive a Raindrop Box, guaranteed by priority fulfillment and shipment of this reward one week before the rest.

    It includes one Raindrop Box 50 Starter Package (in one of the following colors: Sand, Loam, Ocean, Clay, Ash, Forest).

    Plus a limited edition T-shirt to acknowledge you as ONE OF THE FIRST 20 people saving rain with a Raindrop Box!
    And a sticker.

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    Limited 7 backers
    $
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    Woodside / Portola Valley 2-pack.

    You will receive both a Raindrop Box 50 (Starter Package, Forest), plus an Expansion box with connector, for a total of 100 gallons of storage.

    No shipping is added to your pledge, and we deliver it to your house! Woodside and Portola Valley residents only!

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    3 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,500 or more About US$ 1,500

    Just "get outta' town!"
    (This is LIMITED to the SF Bay Area!!!)

    Our team will personally deliver up to 500 gallons of Raindrop Box storage (may include 100gal tanks if Stretch Goal is reached) in any of the 6 offered colors. Plus you'll receive a "no droubt." t-shirt and stickers!

    This donation is pivotal in getting the Raindrop Box 100 manufactured and into the world, changing how we think about using water especially in the face of drought.

    If you choose, photographs of your Raindrop Box system may be featured in a portfolio on our website!

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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 10,000 About US$ 10,000

    Here is a TEN-THOUSAND dollar idea: you care about changing the face of water conservation, supporting the local economy, mitigating the drought, and innovating a better future as much as we do.

    And you can have as many Raindrop Boxes as you'd like (well, almost... however many Boxes that the pledge will cover and ship to your location. Could be up to 2,500 gallons of storage!)

    Our team will most proudly feature you as one of Raindrop Box's... Absolutely Fantastic Kickstartin' Inaugural Inventors! Or, go ahead and invent your own title. Featuring your name is fully at your discretion, and so is us writing a letter to the Governor commending how much water you're saving!

    CONTINENTAL U.S. ONLY, please.

    If you choose, photographs of your Raindrop Box system may be featured in a portfolio on our website!

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    0 backers
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Funding period

- (30 days)