Frequently Asked Questions
I have an idea and would like to get an estimate from your company. How do I go about that?
We generally start out with a free phone consultation to discuss your idea, goals, and strategy so we can better tailor our estimate to your specific needs. Having developed 100’s of products over the years we have a wealth of knowledge on the different strategies and requirements for both developing a product and bringing it to market. We are happy to share that knowledge with our clients and help in any way we can.
What do you need from me to provide an estimate?
Really, whatever you have. We always say, “the more information the better”, but many times we can get started with a simple verbal or written description or hand sketch. The more information we have and the better understanding of what you are looking to do, the more accurate and detailed our estimate can be.
How do I know my idea and information will be protected?
We take our clients confidentiality extremely seriously and would never share or use any information provided without the clients express permission and knowledge. We are happy to sign Non-Disclosure agreements to ensure your information will never be compromised. We are proud or our record of 20 plus years in business and we have never had a complaint from a current or previous client about our handling of their confidential information.
Do you retain any ownership of the products and ideas you develop?
We offer our services on a "work for hire" basis so we do not retain any intellectual property rights over your product or idea. Everything we design for you is owned by you.
If I decide to move forward with your company, what does the process look like and how long does it take?
The process and timeline can be very different for each project as there are a huge number of variables in each product. Generally, we would start out with concept development and CAD modeling of your product idea. We would work with you through this process to be sure we capture your full vision for the product, both in looks and function. We then do product design reviews with each client and walk them thru the virtual prototype in our CAD system to explain every detail of the design. Once you are happy with the concept, we would move into the final development. This is where we put all of the fine details and manufacturability into the design. Once that is complete, we do another design review with the client to be sure they are happy with the end product. From there, we would either make required adjustments or move into prototyping to prove the design and provide a physical model for testing and demonstration.
I need a prototype to demonstrate my idea to investors, potential Licensee’s and/or for crowdfunding. Is there a lower cost option for this?
Yes, we do a great deal of what we call “Proof of Concept” prototypes. They are a lower cost option to the full development prototype. Generally, if your short-term marketing plan includes manufacturing the product and marketing it for sale yourself, you will most likely want to go thru the full development and prototyping for manufacturing. If instead you are only looking for a working prototype to demonstrate to potential investors or to seek a licensing agreement you may be better off with the lower cost “Proof of Concept” prototype.
What is the difference between a “Proof of Concept” prototype and a “Production Ready” Prototype?
A "Proof of Concept" Prototype generally consists of custom designed and fabricated components integrated with “Off the shelf” and/or “sourced” parts to create a working functional prototype. This is not a “production ready” design, but would look and function much like a finished product. This option would require another round of engineering and prototyping before moving into production.
A "Production Ready" Prototype would generally be comprised of custom designed and sourced components integrated to create a unit that is intended for volume production. This design would contain all information necessary to manufacture the product in volume. The prototype would be built to as closely represent the production level product as possible and tested for “Form, Fit, and Function”.
How do we proceed if we have received your estimate and decide to move forward? What are the first steps?
After the initial estimate we will provide a formal quote and product development agreement for your review. When you are ready to move forward, we will just need signed copies of the estimate and agreement along with the deposit in order to get started.