FOUR Cool New Titanium Projects

This is a long post (best to go and grab a coffee …or a beer).

In this update I’m going to show you some prototypes I’ve been working on …as well as talk a little about business and what’s been going on this last six months or so (and why you’ve not really been hearing from me!).

So, first up…

A Blatant “Sales Pitch”

As you may know – I like to “pitch” stuff to you. I make no apologies for it. And, more often than not, I like to do it relatively shamelessly (but only because I believe in what I’m pitching 100%).

So before we start getting elbow-deep in prototypes and such …I’m going to highlight a Kickstarter project for you to check out. It’s my machinist’s latest titanium offering.

It launched a few days ago and is already massively overfunded (I knew it was going to do well – but it’s doing even better than I thought).

Here’s the kicker though…

Don’t tell anyone, but, because I’m registered with Kickstarter as a “Collaborator” on his project  (i.e. I can make changes to the project page and such) I can see the behind-the-scenes dashboard. And the dashboard is telling me that a very high percentage of people pledging for his new, Fine Titanium Grater also backed his original grater project.

In other words, Backers were so blown-away by the original titanium cheese grater …they are absolutely jumping on board this new “fine” grating version.

Here’s what this new titanium grater looks like:

To check it out click here: http://kck.st/2JUrJOR

Again, full disclosure, I’m part of the manufacturing of this project. I will be doing the initial water-jet cutting as well as the final tumbling and surface finishing.

Okay, next up…

A Titanium Letter Opener (prototype)

I’m going to reveal to you an incredibly crude prototype titanium letter opener.

Before I show you the photos – I’d like to reiterate that this letter opener is the result of me learning how to use my cnc-milling machine. All my products are designed by me …but I work with my machinist to bring them to life. This titanium letter opener prototype is entirely me though this time.

Here’s a couple of photos of it fresh off the cnc machine:

Out of interest… those six holes are how I hold the initial piece of titanium down.

Once the machining was done I then snapped-off the six fixing points and then hand-ground around the edges. Once this was done I then tumbled and the result was this:

Don’t look too closely at it because you’re going to see the various machining “issues”.

The main thing I was aiming for was to make sure it functions 100% (if you know me by now then you know I prioritise functionality above everything else …and only then start ensuring the aesthetics of the design is going to work).

Long story short, the design worked very well (although, truthfully, it could do with a little bit more of an edge).

Right now I’m waiting for more tools for the milling machine to arrive so I can continue with improving the machining of it – hopefully it will be ready in a few weeks.

Let’s talk business…

“Magnus, What The Hell Happened To You The Last Six Months?”

In the past I’ve usually been fairly frequent in my emails and blog posts to you (as well as updates to Kickstarter projects).

But, over the last six months (actually, it’s probably a lot longer than that), I all but disappeared.

Truthfully, it wasn’t intentional… it just sort happened. From what I can tell (doing a post-mortem of sorts) I think I just got a little overwhelmed by business and the projects I had taken on.

At one point I had five (yes, FIVE!) projects I had to fulfill and deliver to customers (this was a combination of three kickstarter projects, one website pre-order and a product for my machinist’s Kickstarter project). Totalling literally thousands of individual products to be tumbled, assembled and shipped.

The workload peaked late last year just before Nathan — my first full-time employee — came on board …and only now (this week) are we getting the last of those projects out the door.

Here’s the thing…

I don’t think it’s coincidence that, for the first time in months, we’ve finally caught up with the projects …and I’m also sitting here writing this long, detailed blog post about everything that’s currently going on (and really enjoying it too! :-P).

I can confirm there has been a LOT of stress and such (but not as much as you’d think perhaps). The real “killer” is that this is a manufacturing business with monthly expenses and having such a massive backlog of projects to fulfill stopped us producing any new projects …and the knock-on effect of that was no money coming into the business. Now that gets a little stressful for sure.

I might do a more in-depth post or video on this another day (if you’re interested of course) …but, for now, let’s just say I was a little “overwhelmed” for the last few months …but things are back on track now. Happy days. 😀

Onwards!

Now, coming soon…

A New Kickstarter Project

Yes, it’s been some time since I launched a Kickstarter project – but the next one is not too far away.

The project is for a titanium carabiner. What makes this carabiner unique is, as you will see, the gate mechanism (some people may call this the “spring” or “lever”).

This design is one I initially prototyped a couple of years ago …but let myself get side-tracked by various other projects. In hindsight this is a good thing because the quality standards of what I produce has gone up since then (as well as my design skills to a degree). The result is something I’m fairly exciting to share with you if I’m honest.

Here’s a couple of photos:

There have been a bunch of very good titanium carabiners on Kickstarter over the last few years (I’ve backed most of them I think). And out of those there have been some very minimalist ones …with great aesthetics. However, of the ones I pledged for and received, almost all of these had a crazy amount of “side play” on the gate.

So while these carabiners looked like they would function well in a photo …the gate turned out not just to go forwards a backward …but also side-to-side …which is crazy because it compromises the entire functionality of the carabiner.

Long story short:

This new gate mechanism I’ve designed has no side-play whatsoever (oh and it’s buttery smooth too!).

Okay, enough of a “pitch” on that carabiner – I’ll let you know when it’s launched.

Finally…

More In-House CNC Machining

Earlier this year I designed and made my first product where I did the cnc-machining myself (this was the Tank Bottle Opener).

I’m bang in the middle of the production run of my second in-house cnc-project …the “Bruiser” Titanium Pry-bar.

Truth be told I’m actually taking a little bit of a hands-off approach to this one and having my employee Nathan tackle the production of this. He’s never done CNC before (but he does have experience with designing on CAD software …so, for Nathan, it’s now about learning to physically machine products).

Yes, I know, I barely know cnc-machining myself …yet here I am “teaching” someone else to do it. I only know a little more than Nathan ….and, hopefully, he’ll blaze past me in terms of knowledge and ability in the coming weeks and months (so I can focus more on designing and writing blogs posts like this! :-D).

Here’s the CAD progress we made today:

The red block above is the “fixture” that the prybar blanks will be fixed to for machining. As you can see we have simulated the prybars on there.

We made more progress than we thought we would get done today and managed to get some machining of the actual prybars done – here is a shot of the raw water-jet cut blanks:

And here are a couple of shots after the first machining operation (part of the outside has been machined as well as the keyring hole):

We’re hoping to have a lot of these Bruiser titanium prybars fully cnc-machined by the end of the week and shipped next week (they are on pre-order on the website and you can still get them here right now).

I think that’s all I have for you today.

Any comments or such? Then fire away below…

(Note: Recently the blog comments were not working – but you should be able to post fine now!)

Magnus

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below
Magnus Macdonald - April 24, 2018 Reply

It’s good to be back! 😀

Aaron - April 24, 2018 Reply

Sorry all my cash is going to the Combar on kickstarter..

William - April 24, 2018 Reply

Magnus,
I’m all in on your letter opener; I’ve spent years looking for one online, and by the time I was ready to pull the trigger on the only one out at the time, the whole operation had already disappeared. No matter how far I go looking for my own titanium edc and office… tools?… I always end up back to you. You truly are making the best titanium products IN THE WORLD, and there is no other place to go but your’s to get it. Thank you for doing what you’re doing, and please, for the love of all that is holy, don’t stop.

    Magnus - April 25, 2018 Reply

    Thank you William. I’ve been meaning to make a letter opener for years …and only finally doing it now. I never thought I would use a letter opener …but if I have one on my desk then I use it on an almost daily basis.

      Rick Herald - April 28, 2018 Reply

      Madnus,
      Is the letter opener available for purchase now or is it a project. I’ve been looking for over 50 years for a good one and this design looks as though it fits the bill. Look forward to hearing from you.
      Sincerely,
      Rick Herald

Roland - April 24, 2018 Reply

Love to see the letter opener ASAP 🙂

William Macdonald - April 24, 2018 Reply

Awesome Caribiner!!
It’s got it all, Esthetics! Functionality! Strength!
And I got to have one!
(Really clever design)
Well done Magnus!

ET K - April 24, 2018 Reply

Letter Opener …………..Yes…….I will Back it…….

Great Design………..

Bob Gelb - April 24, 2018 Reply

I like the letter opener..but the prototype looks like both ends can be used to open letters. Maybe fashion one end a handle, like the grater?

    Magnus - April 25, 2018 Reply

    Hey Bob, I’ve still go some tweaking of the design to go …but, as it currently is, one end comes to a point …and the other end is around 5mm to 6mm thick (at the very end).

D. - April 24, 2018 Reply

Fantastic! Not only the design of the letter opener, but also now I know how one mills (relatively) fine edges with a CNC machine! I was puzzled for a while recently how that would be done.. The six “holes” explains it..

Cheers,
D.

    Magnus - April 25, 2018 Reply

    I’m very inexperienced with cnc …but, yes, I believe this is a common method for machining knife-blades and such.

Peter - April 25, 2018 Reply

That carabiner is sexy as hell and mighty functional.

    Magnus - April 25, 2018 Reply

    Thank you Peter – it’s turned out really well (it took a lot of design iterations to get it to this simple and functional stage).

Ronald - April 25, 2018 Reply

love the carabiner. can’t wait for it to go on the market!

Curby - April 25, 2018 Reply

Hey Magnus, a few thoughts as you finish up the carabiner design. A lot of carabiners with Ti spring gates have tension issues: they can have too little tension to ensure a secure closure, or have so much tension that they’re hard to fully open (so the gate is against the spine of the ‘biner and the opening is as wide as possible). Please try to ensure that your design’s gate closes tightly against the other side of the opening, but can also open smoothly all the way back to the other side of the ‘biner. If there’s any way for you to show a video of the action of the clip for the Kickstarter video, that would be awesome. I’m loving the design so far, and hoping that it functions as well as it looks!

    Magnus - April 25, 2018 Reply

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts Curby! Two things with regard to the design…

    #1 – It does have fairly strong tension in the gate as you mentioned (that was a big “must have” feature)

    and

    #2 – I’ve design the gate to open wide enough for most applications – but it does not open 100% (if you are curious… the theoretical opening is 29mm …but the gate can only open as far as 24mm and so it opens around 83% of the inside space available …I hope this makes sense :-D).

Jesse - April 25, 2018 Reply

I would be in on the pry bar if it had a bottle opener on the side.

    Magnus - April 25, 2018 Reply

    It’s funny… I’ve had people asking me to not put any other features on it (i.e. “keep it just a pry bar”) …as well as people asking exactly what you’re asking …”a bottle opener”. This could be a variation down the line perhaps.

Edon - April 25, 2018 Reply

The carabiner!
Yes!
Great!
I will back it!

Curtis - April 25, 2018 Reply

HI! I always love seeing some of the new things you always make out of Titanium! It always helps me in my daily life. My question is that for the letter opener; will it stay both open or will it have a handle on it since it can be quite dangerous if both sides are open. Thanks for always!

Paul - April 25, 2018 Reply

I’m going to keep this simple.

Carabiner – WANT!!!!

Nice to have you back.

James - April 25, 2018 Reply

The Caribiner is awesome. any idea on price and availability? I know it will go through Kickstarter, but am hoping it will be available this year.

Robert - April 25, 2018 Reply

I’ve long been asking for a letter opener so I was happy to hear one is in work! But where is the handle? What do you plan? Wood? Plastic? Something exotic?

I’ll be looking forward to this.

    Magnus - May 11, 2018 Reply

    I was planning to have it a clean, one-piece-one-material design. The “handle” end would be thicker than the “blade” end.

      Robert - May 11, 2018 Reply

      Ok, less artsy than I imagined but still workable. Utilitarian has it’s own beauty and I’ll be buying one.

      –RBL

Daryn - April 27, 2018 Reply

Hello Sir/Magnus,

Is it possible to order Two Titanium McDangle “Loop” Carabiners in “Raw Machined” Titanium ?

To Clarify:No Stonewash and None of your Proprietary Surface Treatment.

Many Thanks,

Daryn.

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