Another year passed…
It was only a year ago when I did quit my last job as a wind turbine technician and started to take things seriously with the Mattblack Speedshop. It took a little while to figure out what should we do and how. I started the last year with big hopes and even bigger expectations, however not everything played out as I planned. It turned out it will take a lot bigger effort and a lot more money to start up the business.
Even though we had finished a few projects successfully and started a few others which I hope will finish this year. So lets go through our experiences.
The first project we started was to build a useable electric motorcycle. Well I have to say this is big one. Even bigger than I thought, and keep in mind I have modified a few motorcycles before. There is just so many components to design from the ground up that to finish this project will take at least another year. But when we finish with it we will have a quite unique experience in building electric bikes.
Once we realized we can’t finish the big bike on the original time scale we started to do a little moped like bike. The base is a 1957 Simson Suhl. The idea was to make a much simpler bike with a low power electric drive to have a test bed for our battery management system and alike. Well we could finish this project either but I promise you to go through with it as soon as possible!
In the summer we tried to make some money by building custom made stuff for orders. The first was a bicycle storage system that folds up to the ceiling with the help of an electric motor. Well it worked like a charm, but we had to find out the hard way that in Hungary there is not much money in projects like this. People think that these kind a things doesn’t require hard work and innovation so they shouldn’t pay much.
Well we did it anyway…
After that we had an order for a bicycle repair stand that could be stationed on the street for used by every cyclist. We did a good job I think but because of reasons outside our means we never got the order for a bigger number of these.
Another of this summer was the wood grill. We put quite a lot of thinking and work into that one and it was worth every minute. The grill worked very well and the owner was very happy with it. I have never grilled meat that easy before, and all with hard wood not charcoal.
The last job for the summer was to build a special simulator frame for a hang-glider. Its purpose was to attach a real hang-glider in it and then the beginner pilots can have some idea how to drive these thing. Even though it not seems like much it was really tricky to figure out how to give the plane the correct amount of movement and how to support the wing with all those wires in the way. But in the end we made it. It is simple as hell and quite realistic. We took it out to an air-show and kids loved it, and so the few adults that dared to climb into it!
The summer passed and both me and Dani had to start looking for a day job because we started to run out of money. We spent a lot on parts and tools and as we were not able to finish the projects we started we needed to make some income.
First we had the idea to run the shop as a motorcycle repair shop, we even did a few bikes, but again, in locally it is not a big business!
Until we got a job we turned to my VW beetle. Mostly because I needed some means of transport but we needed the space as well. And while VW parts took up a big part of my workshop it was a good idea to get rid of it!
We made a big progress with the car, however it will still need some work to complete.
So where are we now? Well Dani got a job at Thyssenkrupp as a technician working on the development department. Me, I finally got a job at Emkon, a company who produces packaging lines mostly for the tobacco industry. I will represent them in Hungary.
What will happen with the Mattblack Speedshop? Well I intend to make it successful, so I will keep working on the project in my free time. Trying to finish projects up, work on the marketing a bit and keep the webpage up to date. All this needs a big effort but I won’t let my dream of my custom shop slip away. Looking back the year that passed it wasn’t as successful as I hoped, but we gained a lots of experience, and had a lots of fun too.
So for the new year I wish everyone good luck. Keep looking out for us!