We have been through two rounds of production samples with these guys as they are a bit more complex than previous items we've made with this supplier, and there were some tight areas that needed improving. After the previous campaign we've made these a bit looser from everyone's feedback, but they will still be a bit firm initially to allow for the leather to loosen up over years of use. Think of it like ageing a fine wine; it won't reach its best vintage straight away.
Fun with logistics! We have had to find some additional storage down the road from where we are simply due to the amount of boxes we are going to need, despite upgrading to a new premises just one year ago! They don't arrive until December, but we are getting organised nice and early. This has now been arranged and will allow us to actually move around our premises and make the pocket drivers when they turn up, instead of every corner of the place being filled with boxes of drivers!
Bits, glorious bits
Its bits got pinched... poor bits, did it hurt? Maybe... but in all seriousness in the process of getting the hex drive bits for the bit sets, we thought that instead of having 20,000 individual bits floating around in bags that might split and get mixed up, which results in many hours of happy sorting (been there before) we thought we'd get the supplier to plug them into a small tray. Turns out the smaller tray we specified first time around was a bit tight...
Not our exact bits but it shows the problem.
A simple fix was to use a longer one, so you will have some spare holes! But that's international, so don't worry about that when it arrives. Currently they are busily plugging bits into holes, a momentary pause for thought for the person that drew that short straw!
Every part is now on order and in full scale production
This doesn't sound like much but it takes a lot of co-ordination, messages and phone calls to get the myriad of different suppliers we now have all up and running, ensuring that everything down to the last grub screw and washer has been ordered in the correct quantity and scheduled for delivery at the correct time. A big shout out to Sean in the team here for doing such great job of getting that all sorted out over the last 2 months.
One of our factories conveniently shut down for a month while they moved half of the machine shop to a bigger unit, so that was fun to deal with and they have promised to make up for the lost time, but we are now watching them like a hawk and keeping the pressure on so they get their parts made on schedule.
This is always fun, it's something we like to get out of the way early on because there is nothing worse than a hold up in fulfilment because you've run out of instructional Z folds. So, we have these designed and lined up for printing, timed to arrive when we get the boxes and inserts.
QC round 1 is scheduled to happen early next month, so we should have more to show from that in the next update if it all lines up. This is no small task as it involves visiting and checking a number of suppliers all over Europe. Some we do personally and some we use agents that are closer to the factories. We adopted this during Covid times and it works really well and saves us some travel, so we can get on with other tasks. We will do a full rundown of the QC process in a future update, so stay tuned!
To sum up
- We are on schedule!
- If you have an Apple generated email as your Kickstarter login, please can you get in touch as we can't send you your survey without an alternative email address.
A huge thank you to everyone's feedback on the surveys, it was really great to hear from you all and that for the most part, they were easy and understandable. It's always a joy to work on these projects and I am looking forward to the next stages and sharing how things unfold, so thank you for your ongoing support and patience throughout this process.