OK, my friends, here's where we stand.
In 2018, I spent $80,000 in time, materials and equipment to fulfill $15,000 in orders. If I had to do it all over again, I would ... because you all supported my project! And I gained a lot of valuable learning. From a design perspective, we now know what works -- and what doesn't -- to manufacture my product. I am still 100% self-financed, with the help of a few dedicated equity partners and specialists who provide invaluable advice and support.
Alas, our original manufacturing partners will not be able to make more units. They could not scale up. Costs were prohibitive for all involved. Nobody is to blame. So I spent the past few months seeking a larger manufacturing partner. After a long search and many technical discussions, I'm happy to say that we found a suitable facility for mass production. I placed an opening order last week and am going overseas at the end of May to personally inspect the production line.
I have received and replied to all your public comments and private messages about the product. It doesn't matter if your comments are positive or negative. As the inventor, it is incredibly valuable for me to get real-world feedback from early backers like you. I think we can all agree with what requires improvement:
- The snaps come undone too easily
- The panels need to stay folded in the correct direction
- The panel vinyl needs to be stronger
- The vinyl smell needs to be less strong
- The liner needs to be 100% waterproof
- The hoops should slide side-to-side more easily
- There should be a way to prevent "wall-gaps" that cause leaks
I'm happy to announce that I have found a way to resolve all these points. I will be testing and posting photo updates about Version 2.0 next month. Because of your patience and support, you all qualify for a Free Upgrade. I can't promise exactly when you will get your new units, but I can promise that you will. I am working hard to find a way to finance this project. Stay tuned for more details :-)
~ Patrick the Inventor