Buying a bike rack eventually crosses the mind of most cyclists, because leaving your prized possession outside at the mercy of the elements and of possibly being stolen isn’t the most comforting thought. Bike racks take many forms, but never like the LATIGO by Plain Leather LLC. Technically speaking it isn’t a bike rack, but rather a leather strap that hangs from the wall to hold your bike. Even though there are bikes everywhere in the sparse campaign, this product could be marketed as pretty much anything else. Those convinced can get one for $25 — just watch out for dirty walls. The company is looking for a $7,500 for their leather dream.
The Premise. Cycling has a great many advantages. Good exercise, clean energy and not having to deal with parking are just a few. Unfortunately, stairs, the natural enemy of the bike, exist. Sometimes it’s necessary to climb up or down stairs when cycling around. Bikes aren’t designed to be carried, making this cumbersome and awkward.
The Product. The appropriately named Bike Lift&Carry is a bike accessory that attaches to the seat post. It features a retractable nylon band that, when extended, loops around the middle of the bikes handle bars. This creates a shoulder strap that makes carrying your bike much easier. It’s strong, too, with the ability to hold up to 70 pounds. One hand rests on the crossbar while the other can be used to grip a railing or hold onto the handlebar to keep it from moving side to side. Assembly is easy and the strap comes in several colors.
The Pitch. The product was created by a Ukrainian couple. The video shows them biking around town, but becoming frustrated by stairs. The husband valiantly offers to help the wife with her bike, but she refuses. They then use Bike Lift&Carry and their marital problems are put to rest. In the remainder of the campaign, the creators are seen in photos using the strap in every which way. Bike Lift&Carry hopes to raise $32,000 USD in their 50-day Kickstarter campaign.
The Perks. This product goes for $45 at an early price or $50 at a regular price. Higher reward tiers offer the product in more durable finishes and flashy colors, such as “rainbow”. Tiers reach up to $200.
The Potential. Carrying bikes is a problem that has not been extensively addressed. Portage lets cyclists attach a piece of leather cushioning to the bars of the bike so that when slung over the shoulder, the metal isn’t too hard. Bike Lift&Carry is one of the first to come up with a way to make bicycles portable on foot. It has a clever design, but may take up valuable space on the seat post for lights and lock holders. Still, this product is great for cycling commuters who hate staircases.
Most people with sunglasses either keep them on top of their heads when not in use, or lose them in their bags. It’s a shame to lose or break your sunglasses especially during the summer. Portocchiali is a strap that clips to the back of your collar and loops around with a place to hand your glasses from or a thinner strap that reaches up to the arm of the glasses. For this purposefully conspicuous product, the creators only offer one reward tier at €69. Portocchiali is a Belgian product that has a €30,000 goal for a month-long campaign on Indiegogo.
More and more accessories for tablets seem to come out everyday, each one fancier than the last. LapTape is a strap that holds a tablet when the user is sitting down with their knees up. The strap loops around the front of the knees and then holds the tablet’s bottom corners. While a different approach from many products that are designed to prop up a tablet on a flat surface, LapTape is so basic that asking early-birds for £13 and regular backers for £15 seems like a lot of money. In any case, those looking to give their iPads a suspended sentence can help the product’s creator raise £10,000 in his 30-day Kickstarter campaign with an estimated delivery date of July 2014.
Large cumbersome paper bags for charcoal or pet food make life a whole lot harder. Schlepping them around with no handles is definitely a two-handed affair. Clever Bag-Straps allow people with pets or grills to carry and store these bags much more effectively. A plastic handle attached to a Velcro strap makes sealing these large paper bags finally possible. One of these straps goes for $15 at the early-bird price or $20 at the regular price with an estimated delivery date of September 2014. Bag-Straps hopes to raise $40,000 in its 35 day Kickstarter campaign. The Web site offers more photos, instructions and contact information.
The Premise. Smartphones have made photographers of us and it’s a lovely thing. Paradoxically, as photography becomes more a part of us, we’ve become less willing to take pictures with our cameras. Let’s face it, convenience wins for most people in most situations. A DSLR might snap a better shot, but ain’t nobody got time for lugging that thing around.
The Product. Miggo helps make your DSLR or mirrorless camera a bit more convenient while protecting your precious. It’s a camera strap which can be wrapped up around your camera to protect it like a camera case, allowing you to throw it in your day bag rather than carry an additional camera bag. Made of impact-absorbent neoprene foam and Lycra, Miggo comes in a variety of colors and designs. Depending on your preference for a camera around your neck or around your wrist, the product comes in four versions: Strap & Wrap DSLR, Grip & Wrap DSLR, Strap & Wrap Mirrorless and Grip & Wrap Mirrorless. Its smart design even incorporates a pocket to keep track of your lens cap – something that tends to vanish as quickly as socks in the dryer.
The Pitch. Miggo makers, Ohad, Ran, Yuval and Guy were award-winning developers and designers of camera bags when they witnessed the shift in social behavior: people were leaving their cameras—in their bags – at home. A video convinces why Miggo is your camera’s best amigo, and midway through features Ohad, Yuval and Guy who show us many prototypes and tell us they need backers to help fund the initial production to bring Miggo to market this June. Further down the page, they show you how to use a mouse cord to measure your camera in order to see if it’s Miggo compatible. There’s also a gallery of early sketches and prototypes along with project necessities like a 52-year old sewing machine, a pink chair and cookies which presumably kept the project going.
The Perks. For early birds, pledges of $30 secured amigos for 200 cameras – a backer reward which sold out quickly. Today, you may contribute $35 or $40 to net either a Grip & Wrap or Strap & Wrap Miggo of your choice. For a $200 pledge you can custom design your Miggo pattern and have your name heat pressed into any one of the four styles.
The Potential. Miggo dual identity offers a lot of appeal, helping to cut down the bulk that often convinces those who purchase excellent imaging products to forsake them on the go. While ideal for photography enthusiasts, this product may not be as appealing to advanced amateurs who like to bring spare lenses and even batteries along to shoot with. But for the one-lens wonders out there. it could be the colorful cushion that becomes the go-to way to carry and coddle your camera.
The Premise. If you’ve ever experienced the common vacation activity known as “the walking tour,” you may be familiar with some of the hurdles which come with trying to document it. Traveling with a camera can be cumbersome and annoying, yet having the ability to look fondly back on memories of past trips can deem the activity “worth the hassle”.
The Product. Not to be confused with an awesome accessory for your best air guitar, the Air Strap has many hopeful photographers and photography enthusiasts looking forward to a more comfortable future in photo capturing. While traditional straps rely on a single important benefit like ‘coming in the box for free’ many users have found them painful and hard-to-adjust. The folks at Custom SLR hope to remedy this with a wide, lightweight neoprene alternative that helps avoids the dreaded sweaty neck and shoulder syndrome.
The Pitch. Custom SLR keeps the campaign video simple following a photographer taking shots around San Francisco while the narrator points out the strap’s advantages — comfort, quick loosening to facilitate framing the shot, and air holes that let the strap breathe and dissipate the kind of sweat a hardworking photographer can work up.
The Perks. A $25 pledge nets an Air Strap and Laptop Strap Attachment, which is a pretty good deal compared to some of the more professionally oriented slings. From there, rewards escalate to include a number of other accessories. They culminate to include a free dinner in San Francisco (sorry East coasters, transportation is excluded).
The Potential. The camera strap is a commodity item, often thrown into the box. On the other hand, there are a number of higher-end products such as those from Black Rapid that offer a place at your side and conveniently allows you to quickly position to grab a shot. The inclusion of a laptop case adapter, though, should provide some added utility, appeal and value.