Spin Chill: Colder, Faster - MakerBot Case Study
Posted on July 25 2017
Some inventors set out to change the world. Others just want a cold drink
Trevor Abbott and Ty Parker studied mechanical engineering at the University of Florida and lived in Gainesville’s HackerHouse. In May, they headed up to Atlanta for a hackathon. The night before, they found themselves with warm beer, and they used an old trick: If you spin a can in a bucket of ice water, a beverage will get delightfully cold in only a few minutes. (It has to do with convection. And no, it won’t explode.) So what, they wondered, if a motor could spin the can for you?
At the hackathon, Abbott and Parker put together parts from an electric drill and a plastic top from a six-pack with duct tape to present what they called the Beerouette. They didn’t win the hackathon, but they suspected they were onto something.
“When we came back to Gainesville, we knew that the part that clipped onto the beer was going to be the most crucial and difficult part to create,” Abbott told Outta the Box TV. Making injection molds would take a couple of months and thousands of dollars, but Abbott and Parker prototyped the clip on the HackerHouse’s MakerBot Replicator 2 Desktop 3D printer over the course of a couple of days. Each print cost a dollar or two in filament, which the HackerHouse supplied. Once they had found the shape, they 3D printed their own molds, filled them with rubber, and struck a drill bit in the middle. They called it the Chill Bit and tested the market at local construction sites.
Encouraged by the response, they returned to the Beerouette. And they 3D printed that prototype on the MakerBot Replicator 2
Now calling their project Spin Chill, Abbott and Parker launched a Kickstarter campaign, asking for $10,000 USD to start producing their rapid beverage-chilling devices. They raised more than $40,000, and shipped their first orders seven months from concept to market. And now they are selling the Spin Chill in stores and over the Web.
“We would never be where we are without MakerBot,” says Abbott. He is also the chairman of Gator Innovators, a student agency that promotes entrepreneurship at the University of Floris, and is proud of printing a Gator head for Governer Rick Scott when he visited. Abbott is in ROTC, and his plan was to go into the Navy after graduating in the spring. Now, however, he’s building a business with Parker. “We’ve got a bunch of other ideas for products,” he says.
To read the full case study done by MakerBot click here