August 2010 News

  • August through December 2010
    • Concept for Zip Stop Brake based on TruBlue auto-belay born in Salt Lake City Utah by Keith Jacobs and Todd Domeck over beers and again a lunch the next day. The TruBlue auto-belay was deemed to have significant potential to decelerates riders in a delicate and safe manner providing a speed reduction system that could move a person from 30 mph to 1 ft. per second over a maximum 40' span. The concept was based on simple engineering concepts regarding the movement of mass and velocity on zip lines and and the descent control or speed reduction capabilities of the eddy current auto belay and other uses of eddy current brakes to slow roller coaster cars at amusement parks.
    • Todd immediately purchased a unit and flew it back to Hawaii with one in hand the next day. Keith while on his plane flight home sketched out possible installation options for for pole mounted and cable mounted TruBlues utilizing a 1:1,  2:1  and 4:1 rope and pulley based reduction systems.
    • Todd had one installed at their zipline operation at Kappalla Resorts in HI where they first tested it with ballast weights, then with staff and eventually with guests. ERI  and GoZip (Todds company) tested multiple ways to hang and attached the systems, lengths and diameter of ropes, types and location of pulleys; and tested the unit on different zip lines of different lengths. During this time ERI purchased 4 more units for a new installation and began testing them after strategically removing several of the rare earth magnets within the Trublue units.  Spring tension on the reduction drum was altered and a cost effective, easy to install and easy to operate magnetic zip line brake was born.
    • During this time Keith worked on doing design drawings in CAD of his "sketches from the plane", and as one of the few US distributors of the TruBlue Autobelay began conversations with the developers of the product Holmes Solutions and the International Patent Holders - Eldorado Climbing Walls. John from Eldorado and Chris from Holmes Solutions were excited about the idea as they were already brainstorming additional ways to utilize the technology and patent protections. Drawings were forwarded and conference calls ensued as did exchanges by e-mail.
    • Within 45 days of the firs discussion with Holmes Solutions and Eldorado Climbing Walls a unit had been installed at Holmes Solutions New Zealand ISO 9000 Certified Testing Facility. Test rigs that mimicked Keith's drawings were installed and tests were begun on different angles of cable installation, speeds of travel, weights of riders, use of reduction systems, etc.
    • The consensus was in - and while the name ZipStop had yet to be termed - the development of an eddy currant zip line brake system had begun and additional R& D plans were put into place on  component materials, look and feel of product, as well as additional uses of the technology for other applications that sprung from the idea to use it as a zip line brake.