Case Study: Cement Mixer Weather Cover
Client: Adrian Batty
Product Protection: Currently patent pending in the UK
The cement mixer weather cover is a product designed to protect the engine/motor of a barrow mixer when it’s not in use. This is a low cost solution to keeping this area dry and is easy to fit and hold in place using a simple buckle and pull cord. The product can also be personalised to suit branding needs for companies. JSL Covers are promoting the cover via their website and contacting large building companies to promote awareness.
In general, cement mixers are stored outside and are usually covered with a tarpaulin sheet or bag secured with some rope. That means they are exposed to the weather and building work on construction sites.
The company wanted to make an all-purpose cover that could be secured simply over the mixer. The idea came from working on a number of building sites and formed after a day at work where the weather was causing a problem. They came up with the idea for the cover but didn’t know where to start and weren’t sure of the financial commitment it would involve.
The first step in developing the idea was getting the right help. That initially meant working with Innovate Product Design to formulate an approach that would work for them. This involved carrying out a patent search to research any prior art related to the product. Innovate also explored the design with Adrian using different techniques and methods; meanwhile, pressing on with his patent application. Once the cover was designed, the next step was to find a manufacturer. This proved to be a challenge for the inventor. A big manufacturer liked the idea, but wasn’t able to help. They then reached out to several who were interested in the idea, but Adrian found it challenging to find the right one to produce at a cost-effective price.
However, after persevering they found a manufacturer. The next step was to get some stock in and set up a website to sell the product.
The team used Innovate’s design boards when contacting companies to potentially sell through. When the first cover was sold through the JSL website, it was really exciting for them.
The Lessons Learnt
The first thing the team learned was that if you have faith in an idea then you should go for it. They’re pleased with the results so far:
“We are still in shock that we have taken an idea, impressed others with that idea and designed, made and sold the finished product. People that we have never met have seen the product and are buying it.”
According to the company, after initial challenges, things are really starting to move forward:
“We are currently in talks with a builder’s merchant to undertake a trial selling period.”
The cement mixer cover is currently advertised on the company’s website.
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