PROVO — A trio of BYU students are working on a new invention that could change the way bicycle owners secure their rides.
Jeff Hall, Randall Mann and Dane Tribett concocted the idea for an anchored bike lock while taking a crowdsourcing class on campus.
“We were brainstorming, the three of us, and realized there was a problem that needed to be fixed,” Tribett said. “I originally had the idea to make somewhat of an anchor that would fix on to your car and we all pitched in ideas and it sort of evolved into what it is now.”
The lock, named Flatlyn, comprises of a long cord and a rubber anchor. The anchor can be placed inside a car trunk or a door, and the other end attaches to a bike or other piece of equipment. The group said the uses could be numerous, and they anticipate seeing a substantial amount of interest when the lock hits the stores.
“I think what makes this lock different is the anchor part,” Hall said. “A lot of locks just wrap around a tree or something. But there’s not always a good option with a car.”
Flatlyn is made of two steel cables, each with a breaking point of 1,700 pounds. The cables are encased in a nylon webbing that would protect the finish on a car or door.
As part of their class, the group was asked to create an idea for a product, build a prototype, and then crowdsource the funds to market and distribute the product. They said if they can raise enough money on Kickstarter, they are ready to launch the product and find buyers.
“It was a lengthy process to create prototypes,” Mann said. “We feel pretty confident with what we made. We want to keep it in Provo and keep the manufacturing local.”
The three are currently working on two models of the lock; one that would attach to an additional lock and another with a larger loop that the rubber anchor could be thread through, nixing the need for a supplementary lock.