I love coming up with ideas for prototypes. Absolutely love love love coming up with new ideas! It's so satisfying to see something that's been tumbling around in my head for a while, usually starting as a fleeting thought, come to fruition through hard work, ingenuity, creativity, and pure damn luck. Some turn out great, ready to go right to production. Others require some more testing and tweaking. I've lately been experimenting with waxed canvas. Coming up with a proper wax mixture took a bit of playing around to perfect, but I think we have a solid process figured out. We are using a blend of beeswax, paraffin wax, and mineral oil.
I've had a waxed canvas auger bit roll in development for a month or so now. It's now in the testing phase. I have sent a few of these prototypes out to accomplished woodworkers for testing. Once feedback has been established, any changes that need to be made will be and these should be ready for unveiling at WIA in September!
Also in the works is a nail apron, again made of waxed 18oz canvas. These feature two pockets for cut nails, a slot for a notepad, a leather pocket for a ruler, nail set, and pencil and a hammer loop that I've yet to integrate. These will have a fully adjustable waist strap that will be secured by copper rivets. These should really turn out nice.
Prototypes are important to a small business, or any business really. The ability to introduce new products and new ideas to the market is indispensable. Of course, the final test of a prototype's viability is the response from the consumer. In the end, only time will tell...