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Old 02-21-2013, 06:00 PM   #1
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Default How to start selling custom made stuff

So my father is looking to start selling custom made fitness equipment. He has few things that he has patented however doesnt know how to get started safely.

This is not big stuff like 200 pieces a month or whatever. This is more like 10-15 or so for the people that have asked to purchase it and then whatever.

Any advice is welcome.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:33 PM   #2
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The best thing he can do is shop around and license his ideas/patents to industry.

The business/liability/cost of manufacturing will kill you on consumer goods. It is not a good time to start making things. Business goods are different.

The other option is to take it overseas to manufacture, but if you aren't well setup with contacts it is easy to be taken advantage of.
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Old 02-21-2013, 06:51 PM   #3
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shark tank
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:06 PM   #4
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Lets see this fitness equipment.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:40 PM   #5
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The problem with patents is that theres always someone who will sue if they think you have a good idea. Even if its a frivolous lawsuit, ANY lawsuit will bankrupt a small company. Just take a look at the current state of the computer/software industry.

Good movie to watch is Flash of Genius to get an idea of what these companies still do. <-- Serious.
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Old 02-21-2013, 07:47 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chpmnsws6 View Post
Lets see this fitness equipment.
Stoil Stoilov and His Crazy Contraption Workout 4 Weeks from Masters
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Old 02-22-2013, 08:27 PM   #7
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Serious? Looks like a nice device for those of us with bitch wrists and those with tore up elbows.
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Old 02-22-2013, 09:00 PM   #8
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What this device does is it allows you to work out back and rear delt specifically without cheating with your biceps when pulling. It allows for a lot more controlled full range motion at more angles than you can imagine. That was my father in the video and he allowed me use that device (well i have the older original one, he made a new one). It definitely works. I've had people at the gym I go to try it out and work out with me and they definitely feel beat the next day.

As far as the bitch wrists and tore up elbows. Yes this will help if your wrists are weak and cannot hold the weight to pull. Also it will eliminate the pressure/tension from the elbow joint and at last as i said it prevents you from using your biceps to pull so theres no (accidental or on purpose) cheating. The full range of motion is just insane though. You know how you feel a burn when you tighten up the muscle? Imagine being able to feel that burn the entire range.

I'm not just saying this since this is my dads device.. Its just theres no competition with standard pullups vs this.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:11 PM   #9
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When you start reproducing and selling it, let me know. I'll probably take one.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:39 PM   #10
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I could really use one
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:02 PM   #11
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1) Your dad needs liability insurance and a lawyer / engineer to write or review a safety manual. Liability is a massive issue here, consumer products are difficult but with workout stuff people are exerting themselves and not always using the equipment correctly, making things worse for the manufacturer.

2) Get a patent lawyer to protect him and ensure he's not infringing on someone else's patent but as others have said if bigger players want to squash him they will. IIRC American patents typically cost $500 - $1500 and up depending on how well protected you are and how much you do yourself (numbers are a few years old).

3) SERIOUSLY consider licensing the product (avoids the squashing and gives quick money), it is very difficult to start up and if you (meaning both of you) are asking these questions like this I foresee a difficult road to your own manufacturing firm. Having an expert in American consumer law for advice would be a great asset, someone skilled and knowledgeable you can pay to help with negotiations will help you a lot.

You can approach companies with a well protected product for licensing, which IMO is your best option if your capital and contacts are limited. Having some proof of market viability is going to help but you NEED to cover yourself for liability. The more you do to make the product attractive for licensing or investment will more likely get you a deal and it will be better than without the work.

I used to work for a bank in business advising also private consulting with companies and you need to get experts involved. Scott suggested Shark Tank, greedy but skilled people, I had clients that were happy getting a deal on Dragon's Den (Canadian Shark Tank) and all went well for them.

As far as DIY-ing it the shopping channel would be a good start and could be all you need until you line up larger scale manufacturing (China / Korea / India etc).

FYI 'Made in America' = 'Final assembly in America' and sometimes merely 'packaged in America'. I also recall something about qualifying for a buy American subsidy if the product is XX% (70%?) American steel regardless of manufacturing country as long as the parent company is American owned, but that might just be for B2B.

Gah that was long and tangent filled......
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Old 02-23-2013, 12:26 AM   #12
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He has other ones that are currently not on video. The main other one that i use is mainly for exercises where you use those fitness cable grips (metal or the ones connected with the fabric) It takes the pressure off your hand and puts about 3" towards your forearm so in other words bypasses the wrist joint and puts the load directly on the forearm.

You know how you get that forearm pain when you lift heavy for say biceps curls? That device eliminates that pain. Another place where these shine is you know how when you're doing reverse grip you're holding on to the bar/grip with mainly 2 fingers (ex: triceps extensions with reverse grip where your palms are facing up)? Well with that grip device he has designed, the weight is on the outside of your arm so you cannot drop it and smash your face on accident. Of course the grips can be used for many more things. Biceps, triceps, chest, shoulder workouts and even some back workouts.
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