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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys!

I need your help! I’m developing a product – a bike tail light with integrated rain saddle cover. And now I need as much different opinions as possible! There’s nothing more valuable than a good advice from a fellow cyclist.

I already made a model from a 3D printer and a sample of a rain cover (pictures below). The final product will probably be made out of ABS plastic (polyester for a cover). I’m also thinking of making a special, carbon fibre version of a product. Or maybe even from wood. What do you think of that? Do you think that's a useful product, worth putting all the effort into it? All your thoughts are much appreciated!
Blue Cobalt blue Electric blue Azure Plastic Blue Purple Cobalt blue Electric blue Azure Purple Eye glass accessory Electric blue Cobalt blue Circle


Best regards,
Borut
 

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in before the savagery and mean comments make you doubt your very existence.

I live in NYC where delivery guys just put a shopping bag over the seat when not in use. Otherwise, just put an arse on it and problem solved.
 

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While an interesting concept, I think your market would be pretty small. As someone else said above, commuters who lock their bikes up outside might be interested, but the fact is, people are *******s, it would probably get ripped apart, or stolen.

I can possibly see it being useful when you plan to ride and transport your bike on a car around the same time (driving to your ride location), in that case make sure the cover can withstand vehicle speeds without coming off. But odds are, if you are riding in the rain, a wet seat is the least of ones problems.

But don't let that discourage you, inventors are awesome, keep coming up with ideas. I'm not saying this is a bad one, I, like others, are just saying that the market is rather small, and may not be cost effective for that small market.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for your replies! When I'm walking around my city, there are actually quite a few bikes with a seat cover on a rainy day (a proper one, not only a plastic bag). I never realized that until I came up with this idea. So yeah, those people I'm targeting, mostly commuters. Road cyclist are not my main market. Covers can also be personalized, which can be an additional plus to a marketing. If you ask me, all the “green” companies should give this product to their employees! :D
 

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Thanks for your replies! When I'm walking around my city, there are actually quite a few bikes with a seat cover on a rainy day (a proper one, not only a plastic bag).
What city do you live in?

If you see a market, go for it. The great thing with 3D printing, you can do small scale production with no investment and see what kind of market there is before investing in injection molding or carbon fiber.

Who are you using for 3D printing? I use Shapeways TLGPA by tlgpa - Shapeways Shops
 

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You could store many things in there. Why a seat cover? You could always carry the seat cover in a regular saddle bag. What you really have here is a saddle bag with an integrated tail light. I suppose that's a good idea, but what problem does it really solve? You can already get a tail light that clips on to a regular saddle bag, and if it craps out on you (like most bicycle-related electronic devices I've ever owned tend to do), you need only replace the light, not the entire thing. That's the general problem with integrating several devices into one - it's all or nothing.
 

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As far as the seat cover goes those are easy to find for like $5.

So the value your idea brings is being able to carry it in a light. Two bird with one stone so to speak. If I want a light I want a good light and that takes priority over being able to carry a cover in it. And given that those covers fold up and fit into a pocket easy I don't really see any value here. Sorry, just the way I see it.

Most saddle are waterproof without a cover by the way. It's generally just people with ripped ones that throw a bag over it. People too cheap to replace a $20 saddle probably aren't willing to pay for something to carry a seat cover in and will stick to plastic grocery bags, I'm guessing.
 

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As far as the seat cover goes those are easy to find for like $5.

So the value your idea brings is being able to carry it in a light. Two bird with one stone so to speak. If I want a light I want a good light and that takes priority over being able to carry a cover in it. And given that those covers fold up and fit into a pocket easy I don't really see any value here. Sorry, just the way I see it.

Most saddle are waterproof without a cover by the way. It's generally just people with ripped ones that throw a bag over it. People too cheap to replace a $20 saddle probably aren't willing to pay for something to carry a seat cover in and will stick to plastic grocery bags, I'm guessing.
Eh, Some people (like myself) may not want to sit on a wet seat later on.. although nothing a towel cannot fix. You are correct though. Now if he comes up with a novel way to use the light, say integrated turn signals, that might be something of value, that just happens to include a seat cover for convenience.

Also, I'm not a big fan of the shape.. it kind of reminds me of a 1950s or 1960s cartoon rocket..
 

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Eh, Some people (like myself) may not want to sit on a wet seat later on.. although nothing a towel cannot fix.
Of course. But it takes me a second to grab a few paper towels on the way out of work/home or a simple wipe with a sleeve or pant leg if I forget that.
 

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Also, I'm not a big fan of the shape.. it kind of reminds me of a 1950s or 1960s cartoon rocket..
I actually like the shape. Yeah, it's kinda retro, and a bit goofy, and it says "I don't take myself too seriously". Does it come in pink?
 

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I think it is clunky, sorry

a real innovation in seat cover would be one that could be deployed in like 1 second - even while riding.

people like me are lazy, I don't think they wanna fart around disassembling their tail light, or worse trying to squeeze that seat cover back into the tiny tail light space.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
@tlg: I’m not from US, I live in a small country in Europe. Regarding 3D printing, my friend has one, but it’s only ok for a prototype, even the small scale production is unfortunately not an option.

I’m sure there is a market, but the size of it is a mystery. I just said to myself - let’s give it a try… I'm also thinking of having a thin rain jacket instead of seat cover, but the size of it is a bit inconvenient for a small light. Anyway, I know it’s not a Nobel Price solution, but if I look at the products that are available nowadays…it’s really hard to know if you are the one with the best product. Thanks for all you comments!

@AlanE: Whatever color you like!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hi again!

I was thinking a lot and decided to continue with this project. The goal is to go into a production, so I’ve created a web site and a FB site to help me with this (Stilla, https://www.facebook.com/StillaCycle/ I’m still working hard on design and extra features for the light (thanks for your comments!). If you have any more questions or suggestions, please let me know!

Regards,
Borut
 

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I think it is clunky, sorry

a real innovation in seat cover would be one that could be deployed in like 1 second - even while riding.

people like me are lazy, I don't think they wanna fart around disassembling their tail light, or worse trying to squeeze that seat cover back into the tiny tail light space.
I was thinking along the same lines, a seat cover that deploys like an airbag in a car. One drop of rain and BAM! Seat covered!

Of course, it would be single use, so no squeezing the seat cover back in the tail light is required.

Two birds, one stone. That just happened.
 

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I still think you are trying to find a problem to fix that does not really exist.

My suggestion, modify it, remove it from the bike, design it to be attached to a rack, with a larger cover. Something like this. People forget them all the time, lose them.
Maybe if you take this, and incorporate it into your idea, you might stand a better chance of a product being accepted and providing value and solving a problem that does exist.

 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I hope it’s not just me, but I see a lot of seat covers (mostly ugly ones:D) around the city, so what I’m trying to do is to provide a more elegant and handy solution. For now, I'll continue with the existing product (with some extra features). I’ve got some very good feedbacks and even pre orders, but it’s always wise to think ahead. A large cover is also something to consider.
 
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