Contributed by MyBell, used by permission
They might not have won the top prize, but when Mybell made its final presentation to New York’s Next Top Makers last week it secured a step forward for the quirky bicycle product a Brooklyn team aims to ship later this year.
By making it to the finalists, Mybell won $4,000 and technical assistance.
The latest prototype, in the works when Technical.ly Brooklyn visited earlier this month, is inside a 3D printed housing and controlled by a custom circuit board. It’s an electronic bicycle bell, which emits any sound the user wants to load onto it, up to 85 decibels.
“I don’t like to be limited by anything. Mybell users shouldn’t be limited either,” Peter Pottier, the Mybell CEO, said. “It should be customizable. Though that made it more challenging on an engineering level.”
You can see the team explain the product here:
The first prototype was simply a cheap bicycle bell that team member Valentin Sidersky, 26, drilled open and installed the electronics inside. Later, they brought on Robert Clark, 28, design for manufacturing, who helped them to bring that prototype to one that could be more affordably produced.
When the fourth prototype comes out, they plan to have it include a button for triggering the bell, built into the housing and a bike light.
Pottier said Mybell will take the project to crowdfunding in the fall.
“With crowdfunding, you are able to engage with a customer base that is really passionate, really vocal and who will evangelize your product for you. And they get to become a part of the story,” he said.
Five different Kickstarter products for bicycle accessories had broken $150,000 already that he knows, Pottier said.
The team at work
The customized circuit board
Edward Bear, Electrical Engineer, 30, demonstrates adjustments made to the protoype
Prototype III and the competition