Manufacturing and Shipping Update 3
First, thank you all for patiently waiting. Please reach out to my personal cell phone at 4082036130. I am in California time so please try to not message me before 8am or after 2am.
I am pumped. Cliff Notes: Pushed back 1 week just to make sure I have enough time. Though, there are some risks associated with the project including, but not limited to:
- actual shipping the completed goods from the factory to my warehouse
- there could be some last minute changes with the final durability testing
Here is the main timeline. Some slight adjustments to the durability testing schedule, moved back a week to make sure I have time. Pushed back one week.
Here is a video of the progress we all have made together on the Hollow Wheel:
This is a review of the prototype wheels and Portable Electric Vehicle's thoughts on the wheels so far:
12 units of wheels are being sent on the 23rd to me where I will be able to begin final validation. I have thousands of miles on the prototypes and these are a direct replica of the prototype, but using production materials and processes. So it should be good, but I need to check before releasing.
The major risks to the timeline are:
- Durability Testing
The wheels look good and have been inspected by the factory. Dimensions look good from their side, but it is good engineering practice to conduct your own third party inspection and material testing. So we are doing just that. As seen in the timeline you can how long those will take, about the 23rd to finish.
We are entering into what is called PPAP (Pre-production Approval Process), which is just that. Third party testing to make sure the manufacture made the wheels according to the blue prints (AKA mechanical drawings). We are using very precise machines, called CMM (Coordinate measurement machines) to measure the parts. These can record measurements down to .0005", which is about half the diameter of your hair.
Here is how a CMM works and what it is:
Now on to durability testing:
I have to get as many miles on the wheels and make sure they perform quantitatively and qualitatively. They are a direct copy of my current wheel which I have spend copious amount of time validating, so it should be good to go. However, I do need to validate the durability of the wheel. I have reached to a lot of people, but they can only do 180 miles in a month so I have decided to make a testing rig to expedite durability testing.
My machine shop partner is currently making my test rig that I designed to:
- simulate pot holes at 50mph.
- 130F heat (put a space heater)
- 2000 miles+ until failure (find the failure mode)
- Simulate 500lb rider
This test rig will allow me to put on copious amount of miles very quickly, much quicker than anyone can so I can deliver these wheels faster to you all.
Here are some pictures.
So this is a giant drum with some bar stock on the circumference. The wheel will be on an esk8 drive train. There is a spring mechanism to simulate rider weight of up to 500lbs. One wheel is the driven wheel. The other wheel is the brake. I'll be doing a lot of acceleration and deceleration. It will be hitting a .5" bump every second till it fails. I figure I can run this at about 50 mph at 8 hours a day to get to 2,000 miles as quickly as I can.
So the first batch will be black with a white core unless we get majority vote on a color change. As such, please submit your response on the color of the wheels here in this google survey: https://forms.gle/kLiTC3FTGhX4qEeq9
The tread will be somewhat transparent - my TPU formulation is kind of transparent, but not super transparent. I am going to start working on fitting lights to be integrated into the suspension inserts, so it is enough for that at least.
Lastly, I have gotten several requests that the wheels remain white or perhaps the inserts, so then you guys can dye the wheel or a portion of it with your own color. I am not convinced that people would actually go out of their way to dye the wheels and I am also not sure if this is something that can be done without affecting the durability of the wheels.
As such, my thought is to provide the inserts as pure white so then people can go and dye the inserts themselves. What do you think? Drop me a line in the survey.
Thank you all so much. I appreciate your support. Projects like these where you are pushing the envelope and doing completely new things means that there are unforeseen issues during the manufacturing process and it is hard to project. So I am just trying to be as transparent as possible. Every single night I am up late with the factory working on new things and solving problems.