Wednesday, January 30, 2013


Today we got the website back up, it is not to the status that we were at before the crash but we should be there soon enough considering we don't have to relearn Drupal. We are still going to use Drupal as it looks very nice and is a lot easier to do what we want. Maintenance with it should be a breeze. One of our team members has been working on a fundraising idea that would consist of making posters for other clubs in the school using a resource easily available to EDD. Video production is chugging along. We are re-editing all the old videos with the new intros and outros

Fancy Backpack Straps

As of right now we have four different designs for the straps alone that we have been trying out. One of them has been sewn up and we are currently trying to improve on its aesthetics  Our way of doing this is going to be to add some trim fabric all the way around it. Also we want to attach the webbing to the straps to get an idea of how long everything needs to be. Overall these straps might not be used in our final backpack but for right now they are great practice for the real thing. 

Time Ticking, Towels, and Terrycloth

Our prototype is almost complete! We have ironed out all the final details and are just working on the assembly. We have also continued research on fabric material for the cover, and called a few local craft stores to see what the have in stock. We are exploring the use of terrycloth (used for bathrobes/towels) as opposed to cotton since it is usually made for absorption, so it would be ideal to keep the arm area dry from things like sweat or water. By staying after school again to work, we have been able to have some real progress on our project. All our group members' schedules are finally lining up, so we plan to be putting more time in outside of class together. As we begin the second half of our school year, it is now more important than ever for us to understand the importance of time. From here on out, we know that a lot of hard work must be put in so that by the time we present the PivoRest, we will have something to show off and be proud of

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Backpack Here We Come!

Over the break we worked on sewing some more tote bags and we also sewed together a prototype strap with padding in it. In class we got the assignment to come up with three different strap designs.  We are currently trying to find a new website that has everything we want and can come faster and cheaper than what we are using now. We have sewn all the tote bags we planned on making, so to further improve our skills we are going to move to making backpacks and try making pockets for them. We are looking forward to getting our supplies so we can work on our backpack straps and keep moving along in our backpack production.

Monday, January 28, 2013

The Track to Success

The members of PivoRest took advantage of the break high school students received for mid-term week.  When group members were not busy studying for or taking a test, we used the extra time to prototype, talk to physical therapists and explore other options in comfortable material.  We discussed our ideas with the therapists at Maplewood Manor and were able to look into a new gel material for extra firm comfort.  We also recently received a ball-and-socket joint and are working on incorporating it in our first prototype.  This prototype should be done by early next week!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Extending the Field

As Team PivoRest continues working on prototypes, a few members of the group have been making several phone calls to more nursing homes.  By doing this, our group can gain more feedback from a bigger sample. With mid-term week quickly approaching, the team has been planning out more times to meet as a group to finish prototyping, as well as planning out meetings with nursing homes like Maplewood Manor and Schuyler Ridge.  We look forward to more feedback and can not wait for the first prototype to be done!

Sewing Up More Progress

Today in class Seth began tracing out the outline of the actual First Wave backpack. The sketches of the backpack were printed out and then cut out last class. We also continued work on the shoulder straps of the backpack.  There was progress made on how we would make the straps by using some foam and putting it in between a cut out of the shoulder strap design. In addition we were finishing up loose ends before we leave before mid-term week. In the upcoming week we plan to research and find a metal bar that will go onto the backpack that will hold the roller skis. Brian, our group leader, left for Australia today so we will be waiting with anticipation for his first race.


Today we presented our new website to the rest of the class. Drupal seemed to be a hit and is much simpler to  work with, not to mention looking nicer as well. Drupal is used to help us make the website. It is a lot easier to do all the complicated stuff we wanted to. Our video team is still working on implementing the new logo into all the previous videos. 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Can I Carry That for You?

Today First Wave teammate Erik Ostrander brought in great news: we have created a functional back pack. After the team pinned together a simple back pack, Erik sewed it together and presented it to the class today. Although the bag only had webbing for straps, the bag was wearable and is a great prototype to work off of. For the rest of class the team worked together to pin up straps and cut out templates for the final bag design. The team is making great progress but we’ll see if they can keep it up over the next two weeks as group leader Brian Halligan is headed off to Austria for some international skiing competitions.

Patients and Patience

Over the past few weeks, it has been evident that team PivoRest has definitely been having some setbacks. We have dealt with having a very difficult time planning times to all meet, as well as trying to break up our project in order for us to efficiently use the resources available to us. Also, we have had legal troubles in trying to find patients to talk to about the problems they face with their armrests. Despite all of this, we are continuing to move forward and are trying to work harder than ever to make our project a success. In class today, we ordered a ball-and-socket joint to use with our prototype once it is complete. We also called a few more health care facilities in our area to see if there are any other patients/therapists that we could talk to about our project. Over our midterm break, we plan to make a good amount of progress with our prototype, so we can "hurry up and fail". That way, we will be able to have something to jump off of to bring us closer to what our final design will look like.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Shout Out

We would like to send a special thank you to C.T. Male Associates for there generous donation. We appreciate the financial help and the money will be put to good use on our projects for the year. 

Sunday, January 13, 2013


We put the design of the bag on Inventor, finalizing our design while doing so. We have decided on how to make our straps and the fabric to use for each panel of the bag. We are also currently in touch with Tough Travelers and we hope to get some good insight from them.

    Friday, January 11, 2013

    Legal Troubles

    As prototyping for Team PivoRest continues, research on finding patients to test out our arm rest has been analyzed. In order to schedule a Skype meeting, a letter of consent is needed according to HIPPA laws to release the name and disease of the patient.  As we work on getting consent from the health care centers and the patients, a fundraising dodge ball tournament has been in the works.  With all of these tasks at hand, group members are busy at work and will have results and finished prototypes in no time!

    Steve the Dragon

    Our work lately has slowed a bit since much of our team is involved with FIRST robotics, but we are still moving along. We are finishing up the dragon 3-D puzzle for fundraising. We have obtained cardboard for the box and are finishing up an animation for the dragon coming together. We are looking to finalizing the dragon so we can start selling and distributing them for fundraising. For the website, we have started using Drupal.  Drupal is assisting us in creating the website. In addition, we continue to create videos for the website. 

    Wednesday, January 9, 2013

    Patching up Past Blemishes

    Video production and web development have become routine in progress as the site layout gets tweaked and the videos keep being produced. But since the acquisition of a professional green-screen, our old make-shift blue-screen intros and outros are of a noticeably lower quality. And after some debate over the logo and a background that would accompany it well, we made a decision and are working towards remaking the old intros and outros and officially adding the logo to each one. This way, we have one final format for all the videos decided and can begin adding them to the website as we complete them. Then, with the website collecting videos and forming into a rough prototype, we can begin bringing in some feedback to improve our project with.

    Focusing in on the Details

    The past few classes we've really been focusing on a more refined design for the pack. New inventor models with greater detail are being done as well as color design drawings to try and get a feel for what it will look like. A complete parts and equipment list was finished today detailing everything needed to make the pack in it's current design. A few details need to be worked out such as the waist straps and the placement and number of D-rings, but overall, we are moving forward.

    Moving on With Prototyping

    In the past couple of days, Team PivoRest has been working on the first armrest prototype. The needed materials have been gathered and now are being made into the actual parts. As of now, the elbow piece has been completed, and the plastic has been cut for the actual forearm rest part of it. Also, a mold has been made to shape the plastic. In the next couple of days, the plastic will be bent, using the mold. The rest of the individual parts will be completed, and then all will be assembled into our final first prototype in the near future.

    Monday, January 7, 2013

    Tough Travelers

    Today in class our group was divided and all working on different things. One of the main things that we got done today was filling out the forms for an outside source, so that we could contact them and ask them what they thought about our product. Also our group made an appointment for two of us to go down to Tough Travelers and discuss some of the technical issues we've been having and their advice on overcoming that. Lastly, two of our members were breaking down part by part what materials would be needed to fully construct the back. Overall it was a very productive day and we look forward to meeting with Tough Travelers.

    Video Touch-Ups

    A large amount of videos are getting their finishing touches. They are getting their intro’s and outro’s put on so that we can get feedback on the work that has been done on them. We are getting three people to look at our website and videos so that they can help us to improve them and to give us more ideas for things to put on the website and for more videos to make.

    Fundraising for the Future

    This past weekend, our team began working on another prototype. We completed two of the pieces and will continue working on this prototype throughout the week. In addition to this, we started working towards fundraising. Since our key chain fundraising was put on hold while we get a new laser cutter, we are planning on hosting a dodgeball tournament. In class, we discussed how much we would charge and advertising. We will expand upon this idea and ask administration for permission to use the gym. 

    Sunday, January 6, 2013

    Moving Forward

    The PivoRest group has recently been working on our latest design and prototyping with the materials we have.  With a new, more efficient approach at molding the plastic, the group is very optimistic moving forward.  We have been in contact with several nursing home patients and hope to bring a few of them in to test our working prototypes.  We look forward to the future of our product.

    Saturday, January 5, 2013

    Making Some Inventory

    Over the break Connor and I were able to finish some bags. Connor found a great new zipper from Wal-mart which will be used on the new bags we will be making. We are now selling the bags we are making for $20 each and are willing to make custom bags for a little more money or the supply of the fabric they want. We also started putting together simple backpack designs. I was also able to contact a lady from a paper company to get us samples of white lined chipboard for the wooden dragon boxes for fundraising. After we can get a handle on the simple backpack we will move forward to a more complex design. Such as a backpack with multiple pockets or a backpack with multiple layers and different materials.