Circuitmess are a relatively new seller on Tindie, that make amazing STEM kits for young people and adults to learn about a wide range of electronics – from DJ mixers, to video game consoles, WIFI walkie talkies and remote control cars. Based in Croatia, they have gone from strength to strength and were recently visited by the country’s president Zoran Milanović – here he is pictured with Albert Gajšak, CircuitMess’s CEO and Co-founder:
Their products are wonderfully presented with everything you need to get started and inspired by electronics included – we’ll be giving away two of them to lucky readers – details on how to enter are below the interview. We spoke to Albert to find out more… let’s get started!
Where did your fascination with electronics start?
My father is a mechanical engineer and he was always motivating me to build and take apart electronic devices when I was a kid. The first electronic device I made was a small car with an electromotor and a switch made from Meccano blocks. I’ve got no idea where it is now!
Your products have a huge educational element, as well as being great fun in themselves. Where did the desire for this come from?
I was super bored at school. Every single day, I would go to this community hardware club after school and build stuff with other kids there. I wanted to share this love and passion for building electronics that I felt and that’s why I started CircuitMess.
We love the Jay-D portable DJ device – what made you decide to make a musical device?
We came up with a STEM-learning subscription called STEM Box in 2020. We wanted to cover different STEM topics with our products. One of those topics was music and sound synthesis.
One day, I asked a bunch of kids from a friend of mine what is it that’s related to music that excites them. Everyone said – DJ! I want to become a DJ! That’s how we came up with a DJ mixtable kit. The Jay-D has been the most satisfying product we’ve released so far!
You’ve been a Tindie seller since 2018, how has CircuitMess changed in this time?
We’ve scaled our yearly revenue from $0 to $1.3M, sold 55k devices, moved from a small city in Croatia to the capital, employed 23 people, rented a 300m2 office space, bought a pick and place line, bought a laser cutter, and three 3d printers. We take great care to design something which looks unique – I hate Green PCBs because they’re so plain and boring! We also have a designer hired that’s helping us make everything look super pretty.
Tell us how the Nibble Game Console came about – did you play video games as a kid?
Yes, I was a huge video games fan. I was actually inspired by open-source gaming projects such as Arduboy and Gamebuino and that’s how nibble came to be. Apparently, everyone loves video games and Nibble has been our best-selling product up to this day.
Did you encounter any pitfalls on the journey to where you are today? (perhaps things that ended up being good learning experiences).
I employed 13 friends when I started the business, it all crashed and burned and I had to slowly build a team of people that are fit for the job. The team I have now is amazing and I’m proud of every single one of them!
You’re able to entice both kids and big-kids to your kits – how do you ensure your products have a wide appeal?
We usually make the basic kit as simple to assemble as possible and then throw in additional functionalities and upgrade options on top of that to satisfy the hardcore fans. When we test and prototype our products we let our end-users (children) test them. We have also designed a series of test jigs for every PCB we produce which are based on Raspberry pi and have pogo pins:
What inspires you to create new things?
Constant positive feedback from kids and adults from all around the world that tell us how we made their lives better and more enjoyable with our products. My mentor and co-founder Tomislav Car was a big inspiration for me too. He founded his own company when he was 19 and grew it from 0 to 500 employees without any external capital and all by working hard and working smart for 18 years.
What’s on the horizon for CircuitMess?
We want to build more products that will appeal to an even wider audience, especially younger children and people that are afraid of a soldering iron. We now offer a subscription service where you get a new product every three months. We’re going to become the LEGO of STEM education in a few years!
Thanks to Albert and the team for speaking to us! What a great company they are!
CircuitMess x Tindie Giveaway
If you’d like to be in with a chance to win one of the two prizes, a Jay-D DJ Mixer or Nibble Game Console, do one (or all) of the following:
- Like the CircuitMess Facebook Page and Tindie Facebook Page.
- Comment on the CircuitMess x Tindie Giveaway post on the Tindie Facebook page and tell us which prize you’d like and why. Tag @theCircuitMess and use the hashtag #CircuitMessTindie in your comment.
- Follow @thecircuitmess and @tindie on Instagram.
- Comment on the CircuitMess x Tindie Giveaway post on the @tindie profile and tell us which prize you’d like and why. Include the hashtag #CircuitMessTindie and tag @thecircuitmess in your comment.
- Follow @circuitmess and @tindie on Twitter.
- Reply to the CircuitMess x Tindie Giveaway post on the @tindie profile and tell us which prize you’d like and why. Include the hashtag #CircuitMessTindie and tag @circuitmess.
The closing date for entries until 11:59 p.m. PT on Wednesday, May 11, 2022, giving you just under one week to enter!
This Giveaway is open to anyone over 18, or over 13 with parental consent. The Giveaway is open to residents of the US, Canada (excluding Quebec), the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Japan, India, South Africa, and most other countries where the Giveaway is not prohibited or restricted by law.
Two winners will be selected at random from all the valid entries on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. The winners will be announced on Monday, 16 May 2022 and contacted via DM by the official Tindie account.
Read the Full CircuitMess x Tindie Giveaway Official Rules to check your eligibility before entering.
– Good luck!
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