I decided a few years ago that I will need a cradle(s). I'm rebuilding 2 engines and the car chassis may not be ready for engine install at the same time engine rebuilding is complete. I looked everywhere for a engine cradle for big block Pontiac engines. I found very little out there in the market. I found a cradle builder a few years ago and I gave him some feedback on his cradle. 6 months later I got a hold him and he said he was extremely busy building and selling his cradle. I ordered 3...and then waited ... called ... waited .... you get the idea.
I decided to design and build my own engine stand/cradle (hereafter called SC). My 389 short block is currently ready for pickup. Once I get it I can start using the SC and doc process so you can see the SC in action and see the benefits. The SC does more than sit there holding the engine off the floor.
The features of my SC are: - allow easily attachment/detachment engine to SC using unique attach/detach device - use SC during engine (/w /wo tranny) removal - engine can attached to SC on it's own OR with the transmission - use SC for engine storage - use SC for engine transportation - use SC for easy transfer to engine Test stand - heavy duty steel tube welded design (strong but not to heavy) - 4 wheels attached with one nut/bolt /wheel (fast removal) - ability to fold up SC to reduce foot print - 1 person can operate SC
I feel I have some unique features that no other engine SC currently have. We have built an alpha design with most of the features we identified. We started testing our alpha design. Once we have finished testing with my 389 will can build a beta and determine if there is a market for this tool.
The other issue(s) to overcome are: - can we build a better toaster for more $$ and people will buy it (target price $150??) - cost to ship - sell plans? - sell assembled?
The big problem with cradles is the cost to ship. Steel is heavy. So do I sell plans or build the SC's and sell direct?
If there is interest here on the forum you could help me to decide.
Please respond if there is any interest.
Engine Test Stand Playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLwoxyUwptUcdqEb-o2ArqyiUaHW0G_C88 restoring my 1968 Firebird 400 HO convertible (Firedawg) 1965 Pontiac Catalina Safari Wagon 389 TriPower (Catwagon) 1999 JD LX Lawn tractor 17hp (my daily driver) 2006 Tundra (another driver) 2017 Murano (wife's car) 202? Electric car 203? 68 Firebird /w electric engine _______________________________________________________
I have built 3 for a few local guys and 2 for myself. I can tell you from experience that if you account for all your time plus the cost in materials and welding supplies that there is not a big enough market for any profit.