Patent Granted for Innovative Steering.

Patent Certificate

We are proud to announce that Triple Tread® has been granted a patent for its innovative steering mechanism.

In an earlier blog dated December 2015. I wrote about our success winning an InnovateUK Innovation Voucher which enabled us to begin discussions with a patent attorney in order to submit our application. The patent attorney used our drawings and technical descriptions and wrote the application in the correct ‘legal patent speak’. This old blog date gives some indication as to the length of time taken for an application to pass the various rigorous submissions, searches, examinations, reports, responses and extra costs.

Now we can celebrate!

Trumpet Fanfare! Congratulations Triple Tread®

P@PTrumpet

The trumpets are playing at Duke of York’s Pitch@Palace competition. More about that later. Read on…

The Certificate of Grant of Patent gives engineering credibility to the technology and adds great value to the business. We hope this patent will help attract investors leading to the manufacture of Triple Tread®

Our patent overcomes a problem shared by all tadpole (two front wheel) trikes including recumbants. Basic geometry makes the cycle frame lean the wrong way, away from,  rather than into the corner when steering. To overcome this issue, the Triple Tread® team created a new geometric shape, we call TiltrahedronTM. Our patent protects our steering innovation and could be licensed by other trike brands.

As well as including a patented technology, our design is also UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale) compliant for tricycle racing. UCI compliance means it can be used at elite para-sport level. We believe the ability to lean when cornering at speed, in a similar way to a two wheel bicycle, could provide a competitive ‘marginal gain’ advantage.

In December we were proud to take part at a special event with some very special competitors called Superheroes Winter Wonderwheels. The event was held at London 2012 Olympic venue Eton Dorney. The winter theme is the reason behind the Father Christmas hats. The mild weather meant the snow was false.

winter_wonderwheels_Podium

The event was supported by a number of British Paralympic athletes. The image below shows Triple Tread® in action alongside Rio 2018 Para-athlete Gold medallist and UCI World record holder, Megan Giglia MBE.

Sport

We will be bringing Triple Tread® back to Eton Dorney this summer with a team for the Superheroes Triathlon event.

Maintaining compliance with UCI regulations also means that Triple Tread® incorporates many standard bicycle components and is the correct size for most standard accessories. Following success in the regional/ on-tour rounds of Pitch@Palace 8.0, I took Triple Tread® on a standard car bike rack to St. James Palace for the final of Pitch@Palace.

TrikeatPalace

It was an honour to pitch at this prestigious venue. The Pitch@Palace platform has created a number of new prospects and connections in the Health and Life Sciences industry. We are busy exploring these opportunities and look forward to bring good news in a future post.

PitchFinal2

Our Patent has been granted for the new tricycle for our modern age.

Are you interested in investing in this newly patented trike?

Please contact Mark

www.tripletread.com

www.mphsupport.com

 

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Affair with my MStress

The use of an image of wires bared back at the ends is often used as a visual image to illustrate the clinical process of Multiple Sclerosis. It shows how the nerves might appear under a microscope with their damaged myelin coating. Faulty electrics can be fixed, rewired, replaced. Electricians, Engineers even DIY enthusiasts can make the necessary repair work and everything is good again. I trained as an electrical and electronic engineer and used these skills in my early career. The wires bared back image might be too simplistic, it doesn’t represent how Multiple Sclerosis manifests itself on both emotional and sensory feelings and on movement and strength.

How does it feel like to have Multiple Sclerosis?

This aims to express my feelings and share the impact of Multiple Sclerosis on my life. This is my personal account and although others may relate to some or similar issues, it must be acknowledged that my issues will not be the same for them as Multiple Sclerosis is different for everybody.

Multiple Sclerosis typically affects both men and women between the age of 20-40. In my case I was recently married with a baby boy and enjoying life with family and friends. I would consider myself fit and healthy. New career opportunities were developing. Life was good!

Last year we celebrated being married for 25 years and for most of that time I’ve been having an affair with my MStress.

Affair – a definition

‘an event or sequence of events of a specified kind’

 

Over the last 10 years in particular my psycho MStress’ strength has been influencing all aspects of my life. It’s growing inside me like the Alien in Ripley’s stomach. It can overpower me at any moment without warning.

Like many men I want to protect my home and family; be man of the house, a strong dad, DIY guy. I want to be able to play ball games with my children and pickup my grandchildren when they fall, move heavy furniture and climb up ladders and do simple home repairs. I can’t do these things now because I now lack the strength, speed and co-ordination.

My sadistic MStress has a big effect on my balance. Poor balance makes it almost impossible to lift and carry anything delicate or heavy. I never appreciated how much balance influences strength and power. As well as gravity, my MStress introduces multiple extra forces to cope with. I’m always dropping things; I just can’t be trusted carrying anything precious like your crystal glass of wine or china tea cup or even new grandson.

My MStress is like a mad Puppet MSter cutting my strings without warning. This makes my foot drop, tripping me up or I can be thrown to the floor in a heap and left me to claw my way along to reach something solid to lean on or to slump onto a chair. I can also be immobile due to stiff legs.

My Bunny Boiler MStress has forced me into drugs – my fridge is full of hypodermic syringes and I have a sharps bin in the cupboard. My first drug was a intramuscular drug, a big fat needle I had to push into my thigh muscle. It was only taken once a week but I developed a fear of this 3inch nail. To help overcome this, I tried to coincide the jab with an ‘action’ on TV like a free-kick during Match Of The Day. Sometimes this didn’t work and I’d have to ask my wife or wake one of my children asking them to “come and stab your Dad with this!” There is a lot of collaboration and great research by the global Multiple Sclerosis organisations into a possible cure and currently a number of different disease modifying drugs are available and under test. My second drug was intravenous and similar to chemotherapy treatment. It was so poisonous that as a warning it was dyed a rich blue and this made my urine the same colour for the next 12hours. These poisons made me lose all my hair – everywhere! I looked very sick but felt great for the following 12 months! The other dramatic side effect of this drug and hair loss I still have is feeling cold most of the time. I now have another hypodermic drug. These pin-like needles are not so scary. I use this every other day subcutaneously in my legs, stomach or arms.

My MStress controls the clothes I wear. For comfort, for ease getting on and off and because I love them, I wear retro style trainers as much as possible. Without warning my wicked MStress makes them feel like cheap football boots two sizes too tight, which crush my toes. These boots have metal studs breaking through the soles stabbing my feet with every step. The studs can make every surface feel like ice.

Frequency, Hesitancy, Urgency – Well there’s a contradiction in terms but terms given to my bladder. My MStress must have a sick sense of humour – I’ll be the one stood up at a public toilet urinal waiting and waiting and waiting. Other men will come in and go and I would still be stood there. Eventually I decide that nothing is going to happen and so I’ll zip-up, wash my hands and leave. I wobble my way back to where I was originally but then have to turn back and return as quickly as possible to the toilet. At other times I could be standing cross-legged with my hand creating some pressure desperate to get to a loo only to find there it has always got someone else in.

My evil MStress can try to influence where I go and when I go and this has had an impact on my career and money. I have been fortunate to work with some amazing teams, travel to some amazing places and meet some amazing people. Multiple Sclerosis forced a change in career direction and in many ways has made me a better, more accomplished person. I have been able to use both my engineering and commercial skills and maintain contact with and create many new national and international business contacts. I have also developed many new skills too. Multiple Sclerosis has also created a deep appreciation of life living with a disability. Through our Triple Tread® project I have been able to meet some extraordinary people and connect with some amazing organisations.

So what does the future hold for me and my MStress? More wobbling, more bouncing off walls, more falls and more drugs for certain but also more opportunities. I believe my future includes support for others coming to terms with Multiple Sclerosis and the issues their MStress or MSter throws at them. I am particularly keen to support those who are newly diagnosed.

Championing sport and fitness is of particular interest. I will continue to use my skills and knowledge to create cool, attractive and functional solutions to improve confidence, self-esteem, health and wellness. Exercise is important for everyone but disabilities throw additional challenges including those of balance, pain, fatigue and spasticity.

I am fortunate and thankful for the love of my wife and sense of humour we share that gets us through each day. I am grateful for the support of my family and friends. I know they will help me in my continued battle with my MStress and together we look forward to new challenges ahead.

 

www.tripletread.com

www.mphsupport.com

 

 

 

Innovate2016 – Innovation and Investment Showcase

The advertisement for INNOVATE 2016 – The Global Spotlight On UK Innovation being held in Manchester and promoting opportunities for investment was perfect for the current stage of our business.

innovate-2016-e-mail-signature-650x150-option-1

I expected to attend, as a delegate but was delighted to be offered the opportunity to apply for a showcase exhibitor space.

….and WE WON!

It was great to see TripleTread® as part of this platform featuring alongside some of the best of British innovative businesses and their products.  We are proud to be on the same platform as other prominent exhibitors who champion engineering, sports and cycling such as Ricardo, WilliamsF1 and Team Sky.

trike-in-showcase-exhibition

I have lost count of how many exhibitions I have attended and exhibited at throughout the world.  I used to look forward to meeting all the new interesting customers, building new partner relationships and reconnecting with exhibitor friends who followed similar exhibition circuits.  There were always interesting and interested visitors to the tradeshows with challenging and difficult technical questions.   At Innovate2016 I looked forward to meeting new customers, partners, investors and fellow innovators.  Exhibiting with TripleTread®, and our patented innovative three wheeled trike, I even looked forward to connecting with the odd ‘tire-kicker!’ 🙂

InnovateUK offered all those on the showcase exhibitor floor the opportunity to compete for a 60 second speed pitch in the Innovator Unveiled sessions as part of the main presentation theatre stage sessions.  We applied and again WE WON!

speedpitch

This scale of the physical inactivity problem we at TripleTread® are addressing is underestimated by many.  The presentation was the opportunity to explain how we understand how millions of people cannot get access to the physical and psycho-social quality of life benefits provided by cycling.

At innovate2016 we were very interested to attract investors.   We have recently secured SEIS (Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme) status by HMRC.  The scheme offers investors both personal income tax and capital gains tax relief.  Full details:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/seed-enterprise-investment-scheme-background#overview

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qzVUiyDRcdA

Our objective for InnovateUK was to attract a manufacture partnership or engineering corporate with a CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) policy for manufacture or commercial collaboration.

innovate_2016_slide

We are very interested to speak with anybody or any company wishing to discuss this further.

http://www.tripletread.com

http://www.mphsupport.com

Inclusive cycling opportunities for ALL

The Tour of Britain has been so special this year as stage 3 set off from our local village. To asked to be part of the welcome at the finish in Tatton Park was so exciting. Everyone showed great interest in TripleTread®.

Triple Tread - TOB finish line

Being part of their own particular cycling club and being involved in a cycling spectacular meant a lot to everyone. That positive identity is so important to us all. Cyclist were genuinely impressed with the technology, engineering and the fact that TripleTread® trike has many cycle components that they could connect with and truly understood the cycling issues we have overcome.

Triple Tread® is a trike that could take away the stigma that a tricycle will not be cool to ride. One mum that I chatted with told me how her son with Cerebral Palsy wants to feel like he fits in with his mates. She thought Triple Tread would make him feel good about riding and joining in cycle activities. Others were excited that finally they would be able to share their passion for cycling with their ‘wobbly’ family members or friends. The message that inclusion matters to us as individuals shone through yesterday’s event.

Please support us and lets make an impact together to give more choice to cyclists so that inclusive exercise can be enjoyed by everybody.

http://www.tripletread.com

http://www.mphsupport.com

The Disabled Coffee

Standard Coffee

Most people will be able to buy a standard cup of coffee in a local coffee shop or café for £1 to £2.

 

Highstreet Coffee

You will also be able to buy the same type of coffee from a highstreet coffee shop or you could also buy something similar from a pub or restaurant. This coffee is available in many different styles and sizes and might cost typically about £3 – £5. The coffee can be enjoyed with family, friends and colleagues in a social or business environment. Imagine a situation where as someone disabled, becoming less able or a bit wobbly you are unable to enjoy a highstreet coffee safely without burning yourself or others. The only option is to buy a disabled coffee.

 

Disabled Coffee

This cup of coffee is made especially for the disabled. It has limited choice and is available only in special disabled coffee shops. It costs approximately £15 and is only served in a small selection of UGLY cups. Like many products for the disabled market; the cup is strong and heavy, its design is functional but looks grey, dull and boring. The disabled coffee is available as a takeaway so you could drink it with your family and friends where it would most likely be accommodated but your ugly cup will stand out from everyone else’s. £15 is clearly a lot of money but it’s a ‘NECESSARY purchase’. Non-disabled people think the price is OK but probably wouldn’t want to be seen using the ugly cup themselves. Special purchase solutions are available such as grants. Manufacturing costs, costs of ingredients, profit, margin and sales volumes of the disabled coffee help justify the £15 price tag for the shop owner. It must be noted that there are a small number of exceptionally well designed disabled coffee cups but these have an even higher price.

 

SupercoffeeConfident (to pour) and Cool!

It would be served in a special stylish and cool looking cup; a cup which is desirable to everyone and available everywhere. It has a premium price but still below £10 and is a ‘LIFESTYLE purchase’. It’s availability in the highstreet coffee shop and it’s desirability might mean that a mixed group of people may all choose to buy Supercoffee.

 

We want Triple Tread® trike to be the Supertrike – confident (to ride) and cool! Aesthetics is as important as function in our design philosophy. We are close to finalising our design and producing an innovative dynamic looking trike that offers the rider a new option to exercise inclusively. I’d like to see the trike available to purchase alongside standard bicycles and not look out of place. We believe that someone concerned about their strength and balance who is exploring potential solutions to maintain and improve their health and mobility might prefer to look in general cycle sale channels rather than from a disability store. We are all aging and need to keep active. We are exploring all investment options to enable production and achieve an availability price-point for all. We expect to enter the CrowdCube platform in September which will help fund our first production run.

Please share our posts and watch this space for more updates.

http://www.mphsupport.com

http://www.tripletread.com

Time to innovate

I have found starting a business to have many parallels to living with Multiple Sclerosis.  They both have many challenges and balancing issues.  Each step has to be taken carefully so not to make a mistake, trip up or fall before reaching a goal.  Steps are easier to take with the help of family, friends and a supportive network.  Time is precious and I am conscious that it must be used as productively as possible.

We needed to take time to solve a problem shared by all tadpole trikes including the recumbent style.  Geometry makes the frame lean the wrong way or away from the corner when turning.  This creates a strange and unusual sensation and could be unsafe for riders of upright trikes. I’m proud to announce WE’VE SOLVED THE PROBLEM! and have been investigating a patent application.

It has taken a long time building a new network of suppliers and partners, learning which businesses can deliver and building trust with quality manufacturers. UK fabrication and prototype development has taken a long time and created long delays.

TTBritain2

We have spent this time exploring a number of funding competitions and other awards to aid our development costs.  They offer a great opportunity to raise the issues of Multiple Sclerosis, present the Triple Tread trike and share our story.  Success in the competitions would mean stellar acceleration of the business, new employment, faster product development and manufacture and would mean we could bring the trike to market sooner.

Many competitions are launched by government agencies to encourage entrepreneurship, partnerships and growth with the ultimate aim of generating tax revenue. The competitions all have themes, strict criteria rules and include a complex application process.  The time taken between submitting an application and receiving a response can seem forever.

InnovationVoucher

I was very pleased to find that the Innovation Voucher scheme run by Innovate UK was perfect for innovative start-ups such as ours. The competition landing page features an image which looked to me like a Golden Ticket from Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory.  I am delighted we were successful but unfortunately there was no shiny coupon.  The Innovation Voucher award has enabled us to engage with a patent attorney to assist our patent application for our innovative steering and tilting system.  We’re calling this new geometry TiltrahedronTM.  It’s great to think we have created a new patentable technology in an industry that first started 150 years ago.

The strict timeline to be followed when submitting a patent application has meant we could not publish any new images or share information on our website but nothing is stopping us now!

Keep an eye on our website for updates, pictures and videos.

The Triple Tread team wish you a very happy and safe Christmas.

Thank you to all our friends and followers for your help, support and encouragement during 2015.

We look forward to 2016 – The Year of the Triple Tread TRIKE!

 

http://www.tripletread.com

http://www.mphsupport.com

Turbo boost

Glastonbury and Wimbledon. It must mean summer has finally arrived!   The sun does seem to give a boost to many people; many more smiles.

So far this year, my MS symptoms have caused my toes, fingers, nose and ears to feel constantly and often painfully freezing. I’ve been longing for the day since last summer when I can wear a t-shirt, sit in the garden and enjoy some much needed vitamin D.   Unfortunately, higher temperatures can cause additional problems for many MS sufferers. Known as Uhtoff’s Syndrome, the result of the compromised myelin, elevated core temperature can cause a short-circuiting of nerve signals which in turn creates additional neurological fatigue symptoms. Just sitting in the sun can make me exhausted, my ‘battery flattens’ and my legs feel like lead weights. Not easy to balance and stand-up. The MS Society have published a fact sheet on the effects of temperature in MS: http://www.mssociety.org.uk/ms-resources/hot-and-cold-effects-of-temperature-on-ms-factsheet

These unpleasant symptoms re-affirm the importance to include an electric motor and a ‘Get me home’ button or ‘Turbo boost’ to our final trike design. I really feel this would be a great comfort for when neurological fatigue sets in.

We’ve been working hard to further develop Triple Tread. It is hoped the rotational leg movement of cycling involving different muscles than those used in walking can overcome foot drop issues and although exercise can raise temperature, the cool air flowing over the rider will keep them feeling significantly cooler.

We have bought a Turbo trainer, which gives me the opportunity to ride one of our early prototypes. Our design allows it mounts to the rear wheel cycle like it would on a standard 2 wheel bicycle. British Cycling suggests using Turbo Trainers to maintain fitness levels and improve strength:

https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/knowledge/article/izn20140122-Training-Indoor-Training-Heaven-0

During the Spring months we have also been busy exploring ways to fund the next development stages of Triple Tread trike. We entered Virgin’s Pitch to Rich competition and were chosen to give a presentation at their launch event in Manchester. It was a great opportunity to share our story. We presented on stage alongside founders of Innocent Drinks and Eventbrite (Richard Reed and Renauld Visage).

Triple Tread at Virgin Pitch to Rich

Unfortunately we didn’t make it through to Pitch to Sir Richard but we do feature in their highlight video:

http://www.virgin.com/entrepreneur/wrap-up-pitch-to-rich-2015-uk-tour

We were very pleased by our success in Start Smart Awards run by Business Growth Hub which is funded by European Regional Development Fund. They recognised Triple Tread’s innovation. We won Most Innovative Startup!

Business Growth Hub award

We are also exploring other competitions, which will boost our success further. I look forward to sharing more information soon.

http://www.tripletread.com

http://www.mphsupport.com