You may not have seen or heard a lot about our Kickstarter since it closed at the end of April 2016, but in the background, our business has been churning out iteration after iteration of one of our signature products, our recycled wine-barrel longboard, in the hopes of getting them just right (which after a lot of trial and error, we have!)
Essentially, we set out on our funding journey seeking $10,000 of sales in order to boost our product development. However, we received over 500% of our goal, which in effect, means that we were to make 500% the number of boards our timeline's allowed for. The number of boards not only allowed for the purchase of tools & machinery to streamline our process, it gave us the means and opportunity to re-develop the board making process, which in in turn allowed us to produce consistently higher quality boards in a shorter time frame. However, this development certainly slowed us down in the initial stages. A huge thanks to our backers and customers who were super patient and supportive of us last year!!
What has this Kickstarter done for board production? Well, when we started this product development (pre-KS), each board took about 6-7 hours and was made completely by hand. Post our Kickstarter development, each board takes around 3-4 hours from start to finish (but of a higher quality than before) which is awesome, but still a lot of work on a bulk scale! We're not complaining, on the whole, we love it but we want to make our customers aware of the process and the time involved in getting orders out. We are batch processing as each board takes around a week to make due to steam straightening, all of the dovetailing, joining, routing, sanding, guard installation (on drop-throughs) and then 3 layers of varnish (which need 24 hours of setting time between layers), laser-etching and if needed, gold-leafing. Then comes box making and order fulfilment.
Our recycled wine-barrel longboards are now available for purchase with a 1-2 week turnaround. The wait is due to their hand-crafted nature (Wills is only one man after all) but please believe us when we say they're worth it.
From seedling to oak, from wood lot to wood seasoning, to barrel, to winery, to wine. We hope to bring new life to a material which already has a story as rich as they wine it has enhanced.