Project Description

Project Brief

When the head of a machine shop inside a big corporate R&D facility went exploring on vacations and weekends, he wanted to make sure he took his grandkids with him.  Since driving to remote trails and going mountain biking was his thing, it made sense that he should come up with a trailer for bringing the toddlers and young ones along.  What he came up with is remarkable.

After trying out several designs and prototypes, he created a very stable, lightweight off-road single track trailer for mountain bikes.  He built his prototype for this design and it stuck.  it was tested on over 500 miles of trails and proved to be nimble, strong, and appropriate for carrying children.  In fact, it seems to be safer to be in the trailer than to be riding the bike!

We built production prototypes and showed (and demonstrated) them at the Interbike show in Las Vegas.  We learned a great deal about certain features that were needed, redesigned the trailer, simulated it, and built a business plan for the business.  More work is to be done but the product is great!

Modeling & Simulation

Fabrication Drawings

Stages Of The Project – From Concept to Product Launch

Project Planning

Production Prototype & Testing

Market Research, Projections & Business Plan

What We Put Into It

The bike trailer project, or Gober Gear as it was called, was an end to end project taking a working prototype through many stages including: sustainable materials alternatives assessment, production prototype, logistics planning, graphic design, marketing, testing, trade-show presentation, vendor negotiation, and eventually redesign & business plan development.

Project Planning 100%
Active Promotion 100%
Branding 100%
Engineering 50%

Initial Concept Planning

The inventor, Bill Gober, was quite a character. This is a caracature of Bill that we got done by a Disney artist contact of ours. We produced a logo and corporate identity, post cards, a 4 page brochure, and a 20′ wide trade show booth.

Research & Development

We started by understanding the product capabilities, then the market, then sustainable manufacturing processes and materials. Every business is unique. The bike trailer business required some research to consider potential product liability issues, market idiosyncrasies and opportunities, shipping preferences, etc.

Product Launch

Production of a salable physical product that incorporates green, fun, nature, and health is quite gratifying. The product, the marketing package, and the customers came together at the trade show in this exciting industry, which was a lot of fun.

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Customer Letter

Hi Tad,

I have been meaning to write to you sooner, but being a mother of an active 10 month old boy, it has been difficult to find time to do household chores, or take a shower (I have already had to leave the computer twice since starting this e-mail- he is into everything!)

I am, however, finding time to mountain bike with my son in the UFO Trailer, and we are enjoying it so much!  Until we got the trailer, my husband and I would “take turns” riding on the weekends, while the other spouse took care of our son, Rex.  Now, we can enjoy our passion for mountain biking as a family – we have been going 3 to 4 times a week!   Rex loves it too – our rides last from 1 ½  to 2 hours, and he is as happy as can be.

I love my little boy more than anything, which is why I wanted to take him riding on the trails with me.  It is also why I am so happy with the UFO Trailer. The seat and harness holds him very securely.  We even tipped over on a rough section of trail, and Rex hardly even noticed!  At first, I thought that the roll cage was a bit “overbuilt”, but now I don’t think so – it really protects my kid, and keeps out any overgrown brush, tree limbs, etc.  And it is surprisingly easy to pull – even up hills.  I also appreciate how well balanced it is during cornering and maneuvering through the terrain.

As I mentioned earlier, we are using the trailer a lot and it is getting noticed by other mountain bikers on the trails.  Please send me some more of your business cards to pass out to interested riders.  In the last month of riding with it, there have been several serious inquiries as to how to contact your company.  I would be glad to carry a few of your cards in my backpack to pass on to others while out riding.

This trailer is AWESOME!  It is also an expensive item, but for us, it was worth every penny.  If you have any customers who are considering the investment and would like to talk to someone who rides a lot, please feel free to pass on my name and e-mail address, or phone number.  I’d be happy to answer any of their questions and let them know how much our family is enjoying it.  Of course, I do not work for Gober Gear, but if we have another baby, maybe you could sell me another trailer for a discount (ha ha ha!)

Thanks again for making such an awesome product – might I recommend a “trail-a-bike” type product with a rear shock for an older child?  If you don’t come up with it, maybe I will!

Sincerely,

Michelle, Steve & Rex Moye