Planes and Boats and Us Too

This entry was posted by Friday, 3 April, 2009
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Bill Groves working his engineering magic


We hear from people (mostly relatives and friends) who want to try out our LectricLifter (US patent numb 7517221) to raise their electric outlets up conveniently. Only one request, so far, to protect puppies and such from electric shock (though that’s from a store). ‘Course it would help if we had some. And it would help even more if we got them approved and started marketing our inventions. In fact, three months have evaporated while we’ve been trying to figure out the best way to make the first set (called “pre-manufacturing prototypes” in case you wondered).

In our own defense, this delay is partially because we don’t have a budget for extruded plastic parts and custom circuit boards which forces us to spend extra time being ingenious. For example, we couldn’t justify the money for a custom housing. Instead, we went to a fence manufacturer and bought plastic fence posts of about the right size. You can see how it looks below with the “rotatable plug” poking through. Of course another reason for the delay is that we haven’t been on fire to get this thing to market in the middle of a recession. But with the economy (maybe) beginning to pull out of its dive, we’ve been running out of excuses so Bill Groves, one of the engineers on our team, (plug for Bill: to get a quote on electronic or electromechanical projects) took over the work and things began to jell.

We spent lots of time “cad-ing up” the method of holding that plug in place. We tried several approaches till we could agree on a good way. Now we’re working our way through other details: wiring techniques, fastening methods for the cord management knobs, and so on. It shouldn’t be long now till we have enough prototypes to do some “sanity checks”, show them to retailers, and get safety approvals.Meanwhile, we have two more products that’re stuck in the patent office and STILL haven’t budged. Maybe the USPTO needs a stimulus.


As I’ve mentioned previously, the transformation of energy sources is now underway in a serious way worldwide. My sister, Adele C Schwartz, who writes about and has considerable knowledge about aviation and airports, says her industry is already working on the shift to biofuels which, she says, is “huge”. According to Adele, the motivation is that already ” .. some countries in Europe are penalizing airlines for emissions, even though commercial aircraft are just a tiny part of the problem.”. “Air New Zealand,” she says, “has done some successful test flights recently using part jatropha and part kerosene. A lot of different mixes are being tested, and all the reports I’ve seen are positive for all of them.”

And an NOAA study says that ocean going vessels produce as much polution in a year as ALL THE CARS IN THE WORLD do in six months. The shipping companies, like the airlines, seem to understand that change is inevitable. Sooner rather than later.

I’ll continue to expand coverage of developments related to energy.


Erin ( New England Cockapoos, her link), breeder to the stars AND breeder of our own Bella Luna, reminds us that it isn’t just stores that want the pet protecting version. She needs the LectricLifter too and quick. Before June.

Workin’ on it, Erin.

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