limited production :: hand crafted :: high performance :: rechargeable :: premium flashlights

This is my blog about creating a startup LED flashlight business. I'm a designer, fabricator, and strategist and I'm passionate about making ideas real. I believe that products are about people, that they should be built to last, deliver real value, and that we need to do a better job than we have in the recent past.

Most of my career has been contract or freelance work and I've crafted products and strategies for both big international companies and startups. I also used to work in the "industry" fabricating special effects for film and TV, along with the occasional hot rod. Bottom line, I love making things.

I'm starting this blog so you can follow along, from day one, and see what it's like to start a business, or fail in the process. Only time will tell, but I hope you find this interesting enough to stay tuned, comment, link, like, tweet, and (most importantly) participate in turning this idea into something tangible and valuable.

For a good place to get started with general info about who, what, why, etc., check out the "Stickies" on the left side of the page. Thanks for stopping by and please don't hesitate to ask questions and get involved!

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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Belt buckle from the moon

So I just had to post this little bit of cool. I bought this little gem from an Etsy store called CitizenObjects. They have all kinds of amazing hand-made stuff made from (mostly) steel and a lot of items are one-of-a-kind, like the buckle below. By now you probably gather that I'm into that sort of thing. I just get a certain satisfaction from owning something that I know the creator cared about...and wasn't punched out by a robot by the millions.  Anyway, this is the first thing I purchased from the store. I have my eye on a few other buckles but I only have so many waists ya know?

"One of a kind" has a nice ring don't you think? 
I've been lurking for a year or two, but when I saw this buckle I had to have it. It's made from a piece of heavily corroded steel. I'm assuming it was acid washed to neutralize the oxide and then lacquered black. The closure hardware appears to be TIG welded onto the back of the buckle. It's sold "buckle only" so the suede belt is by yours truly. What, you don't have a couple of cow hides laying around at home? Maybe you should rethink that one.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Side Projects: Zipper (awesome) Pulls

I don't really have time to be doing side projects...but I've been thinking about this one for ages. I had a little down time yesterday and decided to whip out a zipper pull. When I started, a tear drop shape was the plan, but ultimately I was really happy with this "pill" shape. I'd actually like to make an sell these, so please leave a comment if you'd be interested. I'm thinking I'll do them in both nickel plated aluminum (to match your Alpha) as well as titanium.

A 6061 aluminum zipper pull with 2mm spectra cord

Saturday, March 10, 2012


I know you are saying, "Oh no you didn't!" Technically that's true...I haven't yet...but I'm going to! Before you pass judgement on a diamond studded flashlight, just sit tight and wait to see how I'm going to implement this :) I'm pretty excited, and I guarantee you've never seen anything like this before...if it works.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Laser cutting LED thermal pads (Epilog Helix)

I have been buying pre-cut thermal pads but this time I decided to make my own. This is the same material I normally use, purchased in a bulk sheet. Cut on an Epilog Legend 45 Watt laser cutter @ Techshop in Menlo Park. Nothing like cutting parts with a beam of light!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Chaos at Work

My pocket clips get processed in a vibratory tumbler to knock down the sharp edges that come from the waterjet process. Each clip is fitted with a nylon cable tie to keep them from sticking to each other.

When I pulled these clips out they were stuck to the same cable tie...meaning, one clip left its own tie and then attached itself to another! I'll spare you the electron metaphor. Anyway, I thought this was pretty wild...because I'm a science geek. And yes, I'm positive they didn't start out this way :)

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Show, tell, both? Your opinions!

Sorry for the lack of updates lately but I've been in an anti-blog phase. It's actually really hard (at least for me) to keep interested in the blog. I envy those "real" bloggers who can just pump out content on a regular basis. One thing that does keep me interested is if I know people are reading and please comment and/or share some posts with your friends, Facebook or otherwise :)

Enough babble, here's the meat. I've been meaning to add photos to my "packages" page to illustrate what you  get when the little flat rate box shows up at your house. It's obviously the same content as the bullet lists, but I think images are a little easier to wrap your brain around no?

Click here to navigate to the "packages" page on my site (new window)
One thing I was unsure about is whether I should integrate the images as a replacement for the bullet list, or keep it supplemental at the bottom of the page...the way it is now. Please let me know if you have any feedback!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

New Look for "LED Options" Page

Hi all,

I've been trying to make your browsing experience more streamlined, and one major change is to my "LED Options" page. I've added more options and "tried" to make the presentation easier to understand.

You might not notice, but I've also moved "step 1" and "step 2" to the left side of the page. I got some feedback that people saw #1 and #3, but skipped over #2.

I'd love your feedback! What works, what doesn't, what could be improved?

Click here to navigate to the website page (new window).

Click the image below for a larger view (just an image, no navigation).