We're back at it and this blog post would cover the handle of our umbrella featuring our patent pending integrated enclosure. We'll be going through the history of the various designs and it's progress to the current handle.
A little background on our innovative handle design. We began with the mindset that the handle should always be multipurpose. A handle should always be more than just a handle and thus started our quest to create one with a fully integrated enclosure (you know, to help you avoid losing that pesky umbrella sleeve). We began countless design concepts from a coiled sleeve option which slides up and down from the handle itself and eventually evolved into the current handle design with an easy storage compartment.
Inside the handle core is a cavity which can store the umbrella enclosure. We designed it to be super simple and held in place with the umbrella strap (another area of dual purpose function!). No sharp edges for the enclosure to catch on, and easily accessible without a line of sight. Furthermore, the open ended design allows water and moisture to be vented. Although simple, this feature actually took our team many weeks to complete as there’s no solution in the industry with a fully open design.
We went through multiple iterations of testing, developing and trying to create the perfect handle to best fit everyone ergonomically. We even tried to keep the part count to a minimum while delivering on all our desired features. In the end, our Gen 1 product consisted of a simple 2 piece assembly. It was even designed with interchangeability features for future handle options.
Now to our Gen 2 redesign! This handle was one of the major changes between our Gen 1 and Gen 2 umbrellas. After delivering our Gen 1 umbrellas, the top feedback we’ve received was the dissatisfaction of the handle. Issues pointed out by our customers include the following.
When the time came for the Gen 2 redesign, we took the opportunity to address all of these mentioned issues. The new design now features a black chromed metal top cap, which brings a new shine and more definitive overall look and feel to our handle. The silicone grip has now been resized and redesigned to tightly fit around the handle core without slippage. And the threaded handle to stem design is now replaced with a hex-on-hex connection, eliminating any possibility of accidental loosening. Most importantly, the feature from our Gen 1 design that all our customers loved, the integrated enclosure, was kept intact with our Gen 2 umbrella.
Hope everyone enjoyed this blog post, and be sure to stay tuned for future posts.