A KEEN hunter and engineer by trade, a Southland entrepreneur has taken a shot at a gap in the gun product market.
Ethan Todd was no rookie hunter and shooter, so when he could not find a bipod which met his needs – he decided to make it himself.
“I wanted to develop a product I was interested in and I would actually use for hunting and shooting. The bipod I had wasn’t working for me, so I thought I could make something a bit better.”
What hunters needed was a device which would give them a full range of gun movement, remain lightweight, and be easily detachable – convenience was key, he said.
“The biggest advantage is the whole system where you can attach the mounting bracket [to the gun] with the click of a button – the standard bipods out there at the moment aren’t detachable.”
The next step was finding the right part-providers and designers to help with the job, he said. “I assemble them myself, the majority of my parts I get 3-D printed by a guy in Tauranga… It was just about finding the right suppliers.”
About a year and a half since he came up with the concept, he had managed to build a fully operational business from the ground up.
Titled BACKLANZ, the company now sold a standard size detachable bipod and a mini bipod, including mounting brackets and spikes for each device.
Patents had been filed for the products in New Zealand, Australia and the United States, he said.
“It was a lot of trial and error, but we’ve sold a few just in the last month and we’ve had some interest from gun retailers.”
So, where to from here?
“The next go is doing a bipod which is a carbon fibre model, then we can shift into applying the same latching system to other products.”