Make getting on the water fun!!
Getting out on the water brings so much joy to the soul. So why is it that sometimes it is so much effort that we just don't get up and DO IT?
Step #1 - Take the most annoying chore and make it a joy
I started thinking about my waterborne experience and decided there must be a better way to get my canoe back and forth from the water. It started pretty humbly I will admit. A piece of plywood, 2x4's and some spare lawn mower wheels. And held onto my canoe with some quick clamps. It took all of 1 hour to build. And it worked... sort of. Except what to do with the contraption once I got into the water....
Step #2 - Make it look cool
So my next generation of launch vehicle included retractable wheels. It wasn't pretty either...but it was original, and the wheels were tucked out of the way and ready to go at a moment's notice.
Step #3 - Make it personal
Next, I wanted the overall device to be both lightweight and also look streamlined to my craft. So I got some experience with 3D modeling and went to work. I realized that to fit my canoe, I'd need the legs to fold up not perpendicular to the long axis, but skewed at 12 degrees inward so the legs would lay up flush with the sides of the canoe when retracted.
Step #4 - Building up a prototype shop
In the spring of 2021 I invested in my first CNC router and was able to build up several versions of the Freedom Launcher. I took it to my favorite site and tried to beat it up, loading my canoe with a motor, battery, and gear and seeing just how much abuse I could throw at the beast. I was really pleased with the performance and figured out a couple small details needed to be fine tuned to get the performance and durability I was looking for.
Step #5 - Find some customers
I reached out to Darren at Rutabaga Paddlesports about the idea of demoing my system and got the green light - so now I'm ready to take off the wraps and unveil the Freedom Launcher at my first public event at Canoecopia '22 March 11-13 at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison Wisconsin. I hope to see you there!
In case you want to know more
If you want to know more, I'd recommend looking at our product brochure of the Freedom Launcher and then Click Here to learn more about how to order one.