Happy Anniversary to Us…

…And of course to you!

Because without our customers, collaborators, and vendors this past year wouldn’t have been the success it became. For those that don’t know, my name is Michael Fichtenmayer aka FichtenFoo and I started Industria Mechanika about 1 year ago. Let’s call the anniversary July 22nd as that was the date of the first post I made upon launching the website, but it started a few weeks earlier when I called one of my casters asking if he had time for potentially a LOT more kits… I started this because I hoped that since my Fish-Shaped Submersible and Hornethopter had done so well, that perhaps there was a niche I could fill in the form of original concept model kits. I figured that I’d be lucky if I did 6 releases a year (most my own designs) and luckier if I could talk anyone into collaborating to create some original designs as well.

Well, I had no idea then that a year later we’d be booked for major releases well into Fall of 2013 and have more talented collaborators emailing me than I know what to do with (actually I came up with something… more  info to follow) and having to bring on two additional casters to keep up with the demand. I probably work 10-12 hours a day on iMech related things, (sculpting, emailing, sales, collaborating, scheduling, vendors, shipping, packing, graphics, panicking, etc…) but when you love what you do it doesn’t feel like that at all. The response to this idea has been amazing and overwhelming and I appreciate all of the hard work everyone’s been doing to help produce some really cool, original pieces.

We’ve had some growing pains, but I’m the type that learns from mistakes so everything that could and has gone wrong has certainly been educational, but also quickly solved. Plus I try to be as up-front and transparent as possible if I realize something’s going wrong. (usually via Facebook) The biggest problem has been production delays. Since we’re producing resin kits, it takes a little longer to get product out the door than if we were doing plastic kits. Resin casting is an art and a science… not always an exact science, but my casters also learn from their missteps so that each edition is better than the last. I’ve brought on 2 additional casting houses to keep up with the demand and schedule. We’re about 2 months behind my original schedule, but that’ll be fixed shortly with the upcoming (and close together) releases of the Dustbuster, Chompbot, Orbship and Frankenstein. We’re also working on those restocks so don’t feel like you’ve missed something. If it sells well, we’ll definitely produce more!

Client Work

One part of the business I didn’t expect was to be doing client’s production work for their own product lines or for Kickstarter “rewards”. Client work sounds like a drag, but our clients are very cool and want the same kind of original product designs that we’re already producing for our own store so it’s a lot of fun. They give us the rough idea and I connect some of our concept artists and model-makers and set them to task collaborating on the releases. Unfortunately I can’t disclose any of the clients we’ve been doing stuff for until September when one of their lines launch, but it’s some cool stuff that I think you’re going to love and created by some of the iMech collaborators you already have come to know.

Anniversary Random Draw Contest

I was wondering what to do for our anniversary besides my long winded rant above… I decided that a random draw giveaway would be fun and a way to give a little back to our customers. So here’s how it’ll work… simply fill out the form below, click submit, then share the Industria Mechanika Facebook page with your friends (optional, but appreciated!). Easy enough! We’ll put the names into a hat and I’ll have my girls pull out the names of the winners, then post that on YouTube and here for you to see.

The Grand Prize will be a 4th Edition Hornethopter kit which will include new pilot sculpts by Christophe Desse. We’ll also be giving away 1 Sasha (1/24 scale), 1 set of Hornethopter Pilots (when released), and some Kastor Art Card sets (5) and Remora prints (2).

To enter just fill out the following form. Contest is over on August 1st 2012 at 12 noon EST.

[Contest Ended. Thanks Everyone!]

Thanks!

Again, thanks to everyone, customers and collaborators alike for making this a great first year!