Nick Johnson had been programming for years before he joined a Hackspace and got hooked on indie electronics. His first project was a simple Arduino motor driver shield, but in true hacker style he quickly progressed from there to building his own tools.
While working on a project that needed a power supply tested, Nick says “I found that all the existing solutions for hobbyists like myself were unsatisfactory: they were either hugely expensive, or jerry-rigged and unreliable.” That’s when he decided to design the original Re:load for his own use.
Nick was surprised when multiple people expressed interest in buying a Re:load for their own projects, but he listed the product on Tindie. In what he called “No time at all,” he had made hundreds of sales through his Tindie store, Arachnid Labs.
The original Re:load experienced such success that Nick designed an updated, more robust version with extra features. He recently ran a Kickstarter campaign to help with the tooling and setup costs of producing this new, more advanced product. Nick was, in his own words “Cautiously optimistic that I’d reach the goal,” but that caution was clearly unnecessary. Within days, his winning product had blown the original goal out of the water.
You can now find the Re:load Pro for sale in Nick’s Tindie store – it’s on backorder, but Nick carefully planned ahead for sustainability. Because the manufacturing chain for the Re:load Pro is lined up, he anticipates being able to ship within 2 months.
So, what’s next for Nick and Arachnid Labs? “The Re:load Pro is going to keep me busy for a while, especially with everyone demanding the fan kit addon as soon as possible. I do have a number of other projects in the works, though, but nothing I’m yet ready to announce!”