Update #13 - Production and Fulfillment

Hi Backers,

We must first apologize for our lack of communication, and unfortunately another delay with production. Due to multiple technical challenges in the past couple weeks, production has been moved to late July with fulfillment starting in early August. With the technical difficulties now fully solved, our prime focus is now shifted towards the logistics of fulfillment. Our current fulfillment strategy involves coordinating with various distribution centres worldwide, and unfortunately the option for personal pickup in Vancouver will be unavailable.

Since our last update we have been onsite in China working hand in hand with our CM (Contract Manufacturer) on the following

  • Fine tuning and revision of the tooling
  • Assemble production test assemblies
  • Testing, refining, and troubleshooting
  • Shipping and fulfilment details

It has been over a year since our promised delivery date, and we understand the pain, frustration, and exhaustion from all our backers. We can assure that nobody wish to start production and deliver umbrellas more than we do.

Our team is committed to deliver nothing short of stellar, and the test results from the latest units yielded results far beyond anything we’ve ever tested. We truly believe by the end of summer, all backers would get to experience what we believe is the best umbrella yet.

See below for the test footage and additional details.

Sincerely,

Team Hedgehog


Sample Production Assembly

All features on the tooling are now completed with sliders, cooling channels, and ejector pins fully machined. The FOT (First Off Tool) parts were however not up to par, and several issues were discovered during the initial frame builds. As such the tools have undergone several revisions over the past several weeks. It typically requires around 10 days to revise a tool, and these revisions were the main source of the delay.

It is important to note that each Hedgehog Umbrella consist of over 100 moving parts and all critical to ensure functionality of the product. The open/close mechanism on the FOT (First Off Tool) assembly was difficult to operate, but the issue has since been resolved with the SOT (Second Off Tool) assembly.

Currently there has been a total of 25 SOT production test assemblies produced, all with the intention to capture the final bugs before we roll into production. We are expecting the next and final round of samples to be completed within the next 10 days, followed immediately by purchasing of raw materials, and full production to start in late July.

See below for images.

 
Sample Umbrella in Box

Sample Umbrella in Box

Production Test Unit Frame with Canopy (Total Weight: 336g)

Production Test Unit Frame with Canopy (Total Weight: 336g)

 
 
Completed Production Test Assemblies (Canopy Removed)

Completed Production Test Assemblies (Canopy Removed)

 
 
 
Rib Subassemblies

Rib Subassemblies

 
 
 
Stem and Slider Subassembly

Stem and Slider Subassembly

 
Slider and Suspension Subassembly

Slider and Suspension Subassembly

Suspension Slider Assembly and tools

Suspension Slider Assembly and tools

Stamped Rib Production Prototype with and without Electrolytic Coating

Stamped Rib Production Prototype with and without Electrolytic Coating

 
CNC Bent Rib Spring

CNC Bent Rib Spring

 
 
Shielded Tips on Canopy

Shielded Tips on Canopy

 
 
Centre Rib Over Mold Tool (1 of 17 Tools) - Completed with Sliders, Ejector Pins, and Cooling Channels

Centre Rib Over Mold Tool (1 of 17 Tools) - Completed with Sliders, Ejector Pins, and Cooling Channels

 
 

Wind Test Video of Typical Premium Umbrella ($80 MSRP) - Note that one of of the ribs were fractured from the test.

 

Wind Test Video of Typical Premium Vented Canopy Umbrella ($50 MSRP) - Note that the Vented Canopy Design does not prevent canopy from flipping inside out.

 

Wind Test Video of Hedgehog Umbrella Production Sample Assembly - Note that the wind source is much closer, and the operator was far more aggressive in trying to flip the canopy inside out. The durability and performance of the Sample Assembly has far exceeded all our previous prototypes.


Fulfillment

The logistical complexity behind shipping over a thousand of packages across the globe was far beyond what we initially imagined. Below is our current plan which we believe is the quickest and most efficient method of shipping our umbrellas to all backers. All orders would be shipped with tracking numbers.

Furthermore, all shipping addresses were locked in on April 30. Unless you contacted us directly to change your shipping address; the address we pulled off in your Kickstarter survey is the address we will be using for your final shipping destination. If you need to change your address, please message us immediately to avoid any issues with your shipment.

Current Plan

Canadian Backers

All Canadian order would be air shipped in bulk to our receiving facility in Ontario, followed by ground shipment in bulk to our distribution facility across Canada. Each package would then be air/ground shipped individually to backers. We expect the entire process to take 10 to 12 business days once shipment is confirmed.

American Backers

All American orders would be air shipped in bulk to our receiving facility in New York State, followed by ground shipment in bulk to our distribution facilities (location TBD). Each package would then be air/ground shipped individually to backers. We expect the entire process to take 10 to 12 business days once shipment is confirmed.

All other Backers

Your umbrellas would be packaged and shipped directly from China with tracking numbers. We expect the umbrellas to arrive within 10 business days once shipment is confirmed.

Personal Pickup Unavailable

As stated in the introduction above, our team is working with global fulfillment centres. As such, it would be far too complex to coordinate an in person Vancouver pickup. In order for all our greater Vancouver backers to receive their rewards in a timely matter, we will be shipping all units directly to the backers.

What’s Next?

  • Produce, assemble, and test final TOT (Third Off Tool) Production Test Assembly
  • Purchase Raw Materials
  • Mass Production for all backers
  • Ship umbrellas to all backers

Thank you all once again for your continued support.

Feel free to PM us with any questions or concerns, we aim to respond within 3-5 days.

Regards,

Team Hedgehog