Hey everyone, hope you're all keeping safe and well. At this end in Melbourne, since the last update we have gone to another full on level of lockdown. We now have an 8pm curfew, only essential businesses are still open, 1 hour a day exercise and we can't travel more than 5kms from our homes. All this seems to be the reality of 2020 and as challenging as this is, we'll keep finding ways to achieve our goals and appreciate the little things we miss - like spending time with family and friends.
UNRELEASED FINAL PRODUCT PICS
Just last week we were able to finalise the leather cutting and debossing process with some of the leather samples we had, and were then able to glue them on to the production wallets we showed you in our last update. We've taken a few photos of the finished products and they're looking better than we could have ever imagined. It's been quite the journey to transition to environmentally accredited Italian leather, but we are really glad we have. It feels so damn awesome when you touch it, the quality is great, we just love the look and believe it's really taken the whole product to a complete other level.
OLD vs NEW
MORE OF THE NEW... below
DAD'S LEATHER FACTORY
As we have transitioned to the Italian leather we have also had to move some processes "in-house". Dad has taken on a fair few roles and is now cutting the leather himself by hand to ensure quality and precision, as there's very little room for error when sending to our local die-cut and debossing factory - their machines require leather to be in very specific dimensions. We have also had to find a really unique backing film that supports the softness and flexibility of the Italian leather, while also being strong enough to adhere to die-cast metal.
HANDCRAFTED/ DADCRAFTED LEATHER PRECISION
Besides "dad's leather factory' as seen above, the local factory who is debossing the logo and die cutting the leather to the exact size to fit the wallet has been great. This step was really tough as several factories were telling us that it was impossible to cut a natural product such as leather to the exact precision we required for the wallet. Things like this have been part of the speed bumps along the way, but there's one thing that we keep realising over and over again - whenever someone tells you it's impossible, a lot of the time that just means that it's never been done before.
33 DAYS OF GLORY
I've spent the last couple of weeks doing everything I could to solve a further delay from our wallet manufacturing partner and get an exact date. They had previously agreed that completion would be mid-August but they ran into a bottleneck with their die casting metal supplier. We were then told that delivery would be delayed by another 5 weeks which is unacceptable and I've been fighting to solve this. It certainly makes it hard when you're the little guy and there are these other multi-million dollar companies that tend to get prioritised for production. However I have been able to save almost 3 weeks by giving it absolutely everything I could to make them aware of the importance of getting these to you guys. Originally we were going to order a larger number of units, but by changing to order only enough for you early backers we have been able to save time there as well - so I hope you can appreciate that we're trying everything we can to deliver to you as soon as physically possible. Below is the die cast metal casing that is being produced at the moment, although it has being testing to make it out of metal, has slowed things down and become a fair bit more expensive to produce, the fact that it assists with the strength of the wallet and provides the RFID protection we have no doubt it's been worth persisting with this.
Check out the updated timeline below
- 21/8 : Dad to cut down backing film for leather.
- 22/8 - 28/8: Dad to cut leather to size for die cutting and debossing local factory.
- 25/8 : Packaging boxes arrive at dad's house.
- 26/ 8 : Die cast metal casing pieces completed at wallet factory.
- 27/8 : Wallet factory to check surface, amend sand hole and prep for coating.
- 28/8 - 31/8 : Black automotive paint coated on die cast metal casing and dry time at wallet factory.
- 28/8 - 31/8 : Dad to glue backing film onto leather.
- 1/9 - 10/9 : Wallet units completed with all parts and assembled
- 1/9 : Dad to post leather to local factory to die cut to size and deboss in logo
- 2/9 - 7/9 : Dad assembles back pocket design
- 4/9 - 8/9 : Local factory receives leather, debosses and die cuts
- 6/9 : I send a Kickstarter request for all your updated postal addresses
- 10/9 - 20/9 : Wallets units shipped from overseas manufacturer to Dad's workshop in Wentworth, NSW, Australia
- 12/9 - 20/9 : I prepare envelopes with addresses for send out
- 12/9 - 15/9 : Dad glues back pocket to debossed and die cut leather pieces
- 15/9 - 18/9 : Dad to hand-deboss special founders logo
- 20/9 : Wallets units arrive in Dad's workshop
- 20/9 - 22/9 : Dad applies leather to wallet units and puts in packaging to send to me in Melbourne, Australia
- 24/9 - 30/9 : I ship them out to all early backers across the world then have a couple of beers
Overall, I'm sure it goes without saying that we would have loved more than anything to have these by the previous date but in saying that we are also absolutely stoked with having held strong to our vision of premium quality. It puts a big smile on my face to hold this beautiful creation in my hand with the new leather while remembering all the challenges we have overcome, the many times we've had to prove that the "impossible" can be done throughout the journey to get here. The only reason we have been able to bring something like this into the world is because you guys backed our vision and have been there by our side along the way. Wherever we take this creation in the future the fact that you guys were here from the start and have made it possible leaves us forever grateful for helping bring this into the world. At a time where contactless is more important than ever we absolutely can't wait to get it to you guys and then share it with the rest of world.
Thanks again so so damn much
Ben, Pete + Liam