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Picturebottles™ are a new product to be released in 2018. There have been a few key companies and their products in helping us build this exciting new product. Alibre Design is one of them. Picturebottles™ allow anyone to put there own pictures inside the frames that we build in the glass bottles. Initial picturebottles™ were built with wood frames but soon they will be built with injected molded plastic or 3D printed frames. Welcome to the world of impossible bottles!

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picturebot_guy, Nov 17, 2017
    • picturebot_guy
      Here is a bit of background info re: picturebottles™.

      I've been working on this picturebottle™ product for about 8 years now. It all started from taking two of my boys to a class at Marc Adams School of Woodworking (in south-central Indiana) - and the instructor had a glass jug with a wooden chair in it he'd picked up at a flea market. It started me thinking about trying to make picture frames inside of a bottle where anyone could put their own pictures in the frames.

      It took quite a long time (I'm a software developer by trade) to determine how to do it fast enough that I could make and sell. But I still didn't think wooden picturebottles™ could be made fast enough for a manufacturing process to be profitable at a price they would sell for. Actually I don't have a picturebottle™ web shop available yet - it’s almost ready - but I'm not openly selling them yet. I've sold a few wooden versions, but only to locals, but haven't released picturebottles™ to the general public. This posting is as close to a formal release as I’ve come - so far.

      I've been interested and tracking CAD software for quite some time and several years ago I settled on Alibre Design - mainly because of the price. Last year I purchased a MakerGear M2 3D printer and was hoping to come up with a way to make picturebottles™ faster using 3D printed frame segments - and if so - plan to injection mold the parts. Alibre Design played a big role in helping me initially get the 3D printer working and designing the new 3D printed or plastic versions.

      I received the design patent in 2014 for picturebottles™, but there's something else I learned when building the plastic version that I intend to apply for a patent on soon. Offering a product for sale begins a patent timer that expires exactly one year from when the product was offered for sale. So to date, these picturebottles™ are not yet available to buy. I’m still finalizing and perfecting the manufacturing process for mass production. Hopefully sometime first half of 2018 - they will be available. The plan is to introduce the picturebottle™ product either on Indiegogo or Kickstarter - when the time is right.

      As to how the picture frames get into the glass bottle, it’s all done through the one inch opening. The wooden frames picturebottles™ go through a series of steps and the frame segments have to be glued - which adds time to the picturebottle™ building process. But the newer plastic versions do not require any glue. How it’s done, is what has taken us quite some time to perfect, and is a trade secret. When a buyer receives a picturebottle™ they will be able to insert their own pictures (one on each side) into the pre-built frames already in the bottle with a simple process - using a stick and a straw. There will instructions, and videos showing how it’s done - and once you learn how, it’s easy - and kind-of fun - especially for kids. Literally it only takes a minute or two - to put your own pictures in. And because it’s your pictures, the impression is you put the frame in as well.

      As can be seen from some of the posted pictures - it all started in my shop in the garage - and was done in my spare time - which I don't have much of. No outside investors - just me. About a month ago I learned of the Alibre Design contest - although I guess it's been going on for awhile - and decided I might try and submit what I've done. I realize this product is not very complex to build in CAD, but I do believe it's a cool idea, and one that people will have a lot of fun with in the near future. What you can’t see is what’s inside of the frame segments, and I was not willing at this time to disclose that. Sorry if I posted too many pictures - I just wanted everyone to know this was not just a virtual idea - it's for real - and coming soon.

      Hopefully this provides a bit more information about what pictuebottles™ are. And I don’t want anyone to think I’m trying to use this forum as a way to sell them - they’re not even for sale yet. Sales channels (when the time is right) will be done in a more appropriate setting. But I did want to share with everyone what this is, and how Alibre Design helped me with the building of this exciting new product.

    • HaroldL
      This is quite a concept. Hopefully you have a real good patent attorney to help protect your IP and you're getting NDA's signed when needed.
      I've heard of people with a great idea that gets shown to a few companies or people and all of a sudden they are watching someone else making their product.

      Best of luck with your idea!
    • picturebot_guy
      Thanks HaroldL,

      Yeah - we have some concerns, but are hopeful if we get them priced right and cheap enough to begin with, then the competition might think twice about the time and effort in figuring out how to build these frames in the bottles. Honestly, we couldn’t have done it without CAD and the 3D printer. The number of iterations of trial and error effort to get it right has been a time consuming process. It has taken years to perfect the picturebottle™ building process and to get them to an acceptable price point. The key was in the labor process of making them quick enough during mass production for it to be profitable. Although they're not for sale yet, we're looking at prices somewhere from $30-$50 - probably around the $35-$42 range . . . and made in the USA!

      Impossible bottles have been around for a long time - with the ship in a bottle being the most popular. But there are very few people in the world that do them because of the patience, time and effort required to make one. We're hopeful that picturebottles™ will generate a lot of new interest in impossible bottles.

      Basically it's kind of a new picture frame, because you insert your own pictures into the frame inside the glass bottle - and it's fairly easy to do. But instead of the glass being inside the frame, the glass surrounds the whole frame and picture. And inserting your own pictures makes people think you built it entirely yourself - which also adds to the puzzle of it all. It generally doesn't occur to others that you might have bought an empty picture frame in a picturebottle™ and then put the picture in separately.

      But for sure we don't intend to disclose how we build the frames in the bottles. And for now only family members know how it's done. And if we have to start mass producing (which would be a great problem to have) then we will attempt to rigorously protect that process.

      It should interesting next year when we finally do the kickstarter or indiegogo campaign. We're hoping to generate a lot of interest - but we'll see.

      Anyway, Thanks for your comments. We're continuously looking for feedback from others.
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