Montie Interviewed on Everyday Innovator Podcast

Click on image to hear the podcast.

I was recently interviewed for the Everyday Innovator podcast. This is a great podcast that interviews leaders in the product development and product management field. I’m honored to be included in the podcast.


Excerpts from the interview:

Our guest for this episode is Montie Roland. Montie used my online training course to prepare for, and pass, the New Product Development Professional exam, earning him the NPDP certification from PDMA, which is the oldest and most established professional group for product managers. After passing, he contacted me to discuss providing training to product managers in his company. This is a topic I always enjoy because I love helping organizations improve their product management capability and helping product managers further their skills and how they work with each other and the product team.

As I talked with Montie, I also learned about his background, became fascinated by his experiences, and knew he had to join us here to share his stories and knowledge.

Montie has pursued an entrepreneur path, building his own company, and an intrapreneur path working in an established company. He is a mechanical engineer with a ton of design experience.

We talked about his experiences, including the pros and cons of working for yourself vs working for an organization.

[3:19] What is your current role as an intrapreneur?

I’m on the new product development team at Pentair. If you’ve ever been in a swimming pool, the water probably went through one of our products. I get to do a lot of front-end work in industrial design and the connection between customer and product. The strongest part of my skillset is bridging that gap, and I have the chance to do it on a lot of different projects in a large organization.

[5:26] What kind of products did you create as an entrepreneur?

I ran Montie Design for about a decade. We started in B2B products and eventually moved into B2C. We made rack-mount servers and packaging electronics. Clients would come to us because they were trying to get around politics in their company or were behind schedule on a project. We developed products that they could transition into manufacturing. On the B2C side, we made in-home air filters that were highly stylized. We tried to make as much as we could locally so that there was a community feeling to it. We wanted people to look at our products and say that’s the way they would have made it themselves.

[13:02] What are the advantages of working on your own?

I enjoyed the sense of self-determination. You don’t have someone looking over your shoulder like you do in a big corporation. You can explore directions that you might not be able to otherwise. People who work in product development have an inherent sense of adventure, which tends to be more constrained in a corporate environment.
[14:40] What are the disadvantages of being an entrepreneur?

It requires a lot of work. If you have a spouse or family, you need to have buy-in for your entrepreneurial endeavor at home. You also need to have the funding you need and scale your operation based on the funding you have. I had a great time working on my own, but went back to the corporate world because I needed a lifestyle change. I scaled my business back as a result and now do Montie Gear on the side.

[20:45] What are the advantages of working for an organization?

I’m part of a large, multi-disciplinary team that has a lot of depth. There are times when you might have to switch projects and hand off what you’re working on to another engineer who is a better fit. Pentair fosters the sense of trust necessary to make those transitions happen. It’s also much closer to a 40-hour work week and I don’t have to worry about everything. I have a lot of people around me who are experienced at product development, which pushes me to keep my skills sharp. My colleagues and I challenge each other, which creates a very collaborative environment. I get to focus my time designing things and don’t need to worry about all the other aspects of running a business.

[25:55] What are the disadvantages of working for an organization?

There’s a lot of skepticism from companies about hiring entrepreneurs because they think you’ll get tired of the corporate environment and be out the door to do your own thing in six months. Look for companies that see your entrepreneurial background as a benefit because you can bring different skills to the table. It’s also difficult for HR to translate entrepreneurial skills into existing roles and job levels. You need to be flexible about starting at a lower rung and working your way up over time. Another disadvantage is that you’re not responsible for every decision; the scope is much smaller and you need to be okay letting go of some responsibility. There’s also a culture shift because every company’s culture is different.

[32:58] Why did you pursue the PDMA NPDP certification?

It’s easy to back off on training and certifications when you’re an entrepreneur because you’re so caught up in the day to day of running the business. In a corporate environment, you have time and money for professional development. The company wants you to grow and that makes it really easy do things like certifications.

Innovation Quote

“A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle.” – James Keller
Thanks!

Thank you for being an Everyday Innovator and learning with me from the successes and failures of product innovators, managers, and developers. If you enjoyed the discussion, help out a fellow product manager by sharing it using the social media buttons you see below.

2019 Uwharrie Jeep Jamboree

We spent two awesome days on the trail. The first day was in Big Creek. Big Creek is tight and technical with lots of rocks and several great hill climbs. We made it up Winch Hill with no problems and lots of smiles from my wife and co pilot. We also finally made it up Perimeter Hill without having to winch. We had tried getting up this hill for 3 years before we made it up without winching. So that was a nice victory.

The second day was doing the D’s in Uwharrie. The D’s are Daniel, Dickie Bell and Dutch John.

Correcting the line created a little drama
Off camber but in a good line
Nice and slow through the second obstacle on Daniel

Hiking the Black Mountain Crest Trail / Mount Mitchell

One of the a whole bunch of amazing views from the trail

Hiking the Black Mountain Crest Trail was awesome. We made it from Bowlens Creek to the summit of Mount Mitchell in a little under 10 hours. Make no doubt, this is a tough hike but the views and the terrain are amazing to see. The hike began at Bowlens Creek. The first 3 hours were 95% climbing. You’ll gain about 3500 feet and come out of the woods on the crest of the ridge at Celo Knob. Celo Knob is where the really beautiful part of the hike begins. At this point you can see the peaks that you will cross over before connecting with the Deep Gap Trail and coming out at the parking lot at the top of Mount Mitchell. During the day you’ll gain almost a vertical mile! This is one of my favorite trails.

Always come prepared, the weather on Mount Mitchell is very unpredictable. Previous time we hiked Mount Mitchell, we faced 40 degrees and rain and high winds on the top after hiking up a warm sunny trail.

Camping Skills – Book 2 of the Montie’s Guide to Camping Series

I’m excited to announce that book 2 of the series is now available. You can get your copy at:

Montie Gear Website

Amazon.com

Written for beginner to semi-seasoned outdoor-enthusiasts, this book delves into how to select gear, effective ways to set up your campsite, safe drinking water, shower options, and more. The word “camping” inspires smiles in many people. Learn how to escape your daily life and create memorable family experiences in the woods.

ISBN # 978-1733596947 

More about the book

The word “camping” inspires smiles in many people. My goal is to show you how to create memorable family experiences in the woods. First off, I’d like to thank you for buying this book. If you’re about to embark on your first camping trip then forge ahead and let me share what I’ve learned over the years. On the other hand, if you’ve camped a few times and are looking for tips on how to be more efficient and accomplished in your future trips, then read on. I always say knowledge weighs nothing. My hope is that you’ll find yourself better informed after reading this book.

This book ships for free to the Continental US only.

About the author:


Allow me to share a little about myself. As a graduate of North Carolina State University, my day job is mechanical engineering specializing in new product development. I was raised in Asheville, NC, where I earned my Eagle Scout award. Growing up, our home was located only a few miles from the Blue Ridge Parkway, so I had many blessed opportunities to spend time outside. My childhood was an exceptional gateway to outdoor adventure for an inquisitive kid with tons of time and a vivid imagination.

As an avid outdoor enthusiast, I’d say my happy place is being in the woods. Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to camp in North Carolina, Virginia, and New Mexico. The trip to New Mexico was a ninety mile backpacking trip to Philmont, the famous Boy Scout reservation. These rich experiences have molded me into the man I am today.

My wife and I own land in the mountains near Hot Springs, NC, where we hope to build a cabin sometime over the next couple of years. Until then, Connie and I enjoy tent camping there several times a year.

During the final edit of this book, we camped near Blowing Rock, NC, and hiked the Profile Trail up Grandfather Mountain. What a glorious hike and memorable weekend enjoying tent camping just off the Blue Ridge Parkway.

I have found that camping is a great way to enjoy nature while keeping your trips inexpensive. When you camp, you save money so you can spread your funds over more excursions and spend more time outdoors—which is a win-win for everybody involved! Just like everyone else who works nine-to-five, I struggle with my work life balance. Throw in family and responsibilities at home, you quickly realize you must carve out time to do what you enjoy.

This book covers a lot of skills and topics that apply to camping in your area and at different stages of life. Camping is a great experience for your family. Hopefully Family Camping (Montie’s Guide to Camping, Book One) helps you escape your daily life and enjoy the outdoors!Sign up for Montie Gear, Inc. newsEmailSubscribe

Contact Montie

Montie Gear Contest – Ends Friday! Write a review and enter the contest with Montie Gear prizes

The best reviews are candid and list what you like about the book and what you don’t. Comments that just say it is wonderful are good, but comments that explain why you like the book are the most valuable to other potential readers.


Right now there are 6 people who posted reviews and 12 prizes!

Reviews due by 15 March to qualify for the contest.


The free book was downloaded hundreds of times.  If you read the book and didn’t like it, please send an email to montie@montie.com.  Feedback is really helpful because it helps me to know if I should continue with the series.  Approximately 500 hundred free copies were downloaded.  If you like the book then please leave a review on Amazon.  It really helps.

How to Leave a Helpful Review on Amazon

Contest

Once you create your review and it is posted on Amazon, please email me at montie@montie.com. To be eligible for the contest you must post your review and send me an email with a screen shot or your reviewer name and date of review. I’ll collect those and add them to the drawing. The drawing occurs on Saturday March 16th.

The prizes for the drawing are:

1st Prize – Montie Gear DIY Slingshot kit – Get the kit for your own slingshot. These slingshots are highly rated around the world.

Check out Joerg Sprave’s review on the slingshot channel at:

or check out the slingshot on the Montie Gear website:

2nd Prize – Montie Gear X-Rest – Great for supporting your rifle or long camera lens.

3rd Prize – Paperback copy of “Family Camping”. I have 10 of these to give away.

Important Dates

March 15, 2019 – make sure your review is complete and send me an email with your name as it shows up on the review and the date of the review. Please include a screen shot of the review if possible. My email is montie@montie.com

March 16, 2019 – drawing for prizes

New Book on Family Camping and a contest!

 

My new book on your first family camping trip is available on Amazon Kindle. This book has been a 2 year journey to complete but now it is ready to review. I need your help to provide potential readers on Amazon with candid reviews. The ebook is available on Kindle or as a paperback.

Honest feedback is great and I really appreciate it.

How to get the book for free

You can download the book for free from Amazon Kindle from Friday, February 22nd through Sunday, February 24th. You can also email me at montie@montie.com.

How to Leave a Helpful Review on Amazon

The best reviews are candid and list what you like about the book and what you don’t. Comments that just say it is wonderful are good, but comments that explain why you like the book are the most valuable to other potential readers.

Contest

Once you create your review and it is posted on Amazon, please email me at montie@montie.com. To be eligible for the contest you must post your review and send me an email with a screen shot or your reviewer name and date of review. I’ll collect those and add them to the drawing. The drawing occurs on Saturday March 16th.

The prizes for the drawing are:

1st Prize – Montie Gear DIY Slingshot kit – Get the kit for your own slingshot. These slingshots are highly rated around the world.

Check out Joerg Sprave’s review on the slingshot channel at:

https://youtu.be/I_q_afh5Cow

or check out the slingshot on the Montie Gear website:

https://www.montiegear.com/DIY_Y-Shot.html?category_id=18

2nd Prize – Montie Gear X-Rest – Great for supporting your rifle or long camera lens.

https://www.montiegear.com/X_Rest.html?category_id=3

3rd Prize – Paperback copy of “Family Camping”. I’m have 10 of these to give away.

Podcast and Video: Deer Hunting with the Quiet Quiver – Field Test

 

Montie Gear Quick Quiver and bow hanging from a Montie Gear Hunter’s Friend

So, when we got the opportunity to pick up the quiet quiver product, it seemed pretty cool. And I spent a little bit of time with it on top of the mountain a while back, but haven’t spent the day hunting with it. So, I’m going to do that. So that was today. So, I took the quiver off my bow. And I will say that when you remove the hard quiver off your bow do it at home, because if you forget to do it at home and it’s oh-dark-thirty and you’re standing in the dark by the truck, when you unscrew that quiver and don’t realize you unscrewed the catch nut on the backside and that falls down, and it’s black and its dark (and its early) probably best to take that quiver off at home, the hard quiver. It took me a little while to find that nut. Found it though, so life’s good.

So, we’ve got the quiet quiver and the quiet quiver is kind of like a single strap backpack, but it’s just big enough to hold your arrows and a couple of real small pockets. One of the pockets was intended as a bowstring pocket for longbow shooters. What that allows you to do is to get the arrows off your bow and cuts down your visual signature as well. So, when you’re in a tree stand and you’ve got six fletchings or three fletchings (or however many you have in your quiver) and you move your bow, you’re taking those brightly colored fletchings and you’re waving them in front of the deer. A quiet quiver hides those fletchings inside the quiver, so you’re not adding that visual signature to your repertoire. Instead you’ve got a fairly quiet way to hold that.

So, here’s some things I learned with actually taking this out in the field. One is that, of course, it’s one more thing to manage on your back. So, if you’re carrying a hunting pack that has calls in it, my line to pull my bow up a tree, snacks, what have you – then it’s something you’ve got to figure out how you manage both of them. Because if you just throw this over one shoulder, then I don’t like that because its constantly moving around. If you put it over shoulders, then you’ve got a strap that’s going underneath your pack or over your pack, so how are you going to kind of rig that. And the other option is that you can use the strap . . . unsnap the strap and connect it to straps on some hunting packs that are meant to hold equipment. That’s an option depending on what type of hunting pack you use, or maybe you sew something on or Velcro or zip tie something on that allows you to snap your quiver into your pack. And that’s really nice. I haven’t done that yet. But it seems like that would be pretty easy to do, just looking at everything.

Once you get the quick quiver situated on your back, to where you’re comfortable with how you’ve kind of rigged everything up – which strap goes where and so forth – then it’s light enough weight that you really don’t notice the weight. The arrows are light, the quiver’s light. It’s just not a big weight penalty. Some nice things are that once you get up in your tree stand, you can unsnap the quiet quiver and snap that to a carabiner off your tree belt or off your tree stand or what have you. And then its right there at the right height if you need. So, you can quietly drop your (in my case, left) hand down, push the arrow up slightly off the foam that’s capturing the broadhead lightly, and then push it up and then slide it down. And then you’re ready to nock the arrow.

We have product called a Hunter’s Friend that’s a Montie Gear product, that works great for bow hunting; it works good for rifle hunting. It works awesome for bow hunting, though. And what it allows you to do is to strap this to the tree and it basically sticks an arm out from the tree; an aluminum, ultra-lightweight arm. And that arm supports your bow. It also supports my binoculars. And the other this is the strap for quiet quiver. So now I’ve kind of got everything I need right there, at arm’s reach, but I’m not having to hold onto that bow for four hours. Which, I get tired of doing that after a while. And so, the quiet quiver works really well with the Montie Gear Hunter’s Friend. And the other place it works really well, too, is that after I came out of the tree stand, I decided to do a tour of the property and just see what I flushed. And so, I had the quiet quiver strap over my shoulder, kind of messenger bag style, cross style, and that works fairly well once you get the length of the strap adjusted right. So that way I can move easily. It’s really not in the way of shooting my bow. And so, overall, that worked pretty good. The downside’s I see are that its one more piece of stuff to manage, moving in and out. It manages easily on the tree stand. I was really happy about how its not a pain when you’re in the tree stand to manage. Now, of course, that’s going to vary, too, depending on the size of your tree stand, how you set up your tree stand. There’s a lot of things that could impact that. But, like I said, using the Hunter’s Friend, getting in and out – I really didn’t have any problems. So, I was pretty happy with that.

So, this wasn’t a product we designed. This was a product from a gentleman that we were introduce to up in the mountains. And he’s a longbow hunter and so the few minutes I spent with the product, when we met up at Troublesome Gap to take delivery of the first batch, it seemed good; but I wanted to test that out, of course, in real conditions.

So, overall, I think that for this to be an effective product, just like with any piece of equipment you’re going to use for hunting, spend a few minutes before you get on the trail, before you get in the stand, and work out how you’re going to carry it, how you’re going to use it. Practice with it. And especially, since, as I said, if you mix a hunting pack with this, you want to make sure that you can don the hunting pack and quiver easily, and doff it (or put it on and take it off) so that you’re not fighting that in the dark. And then the other thing, too, is think about how this works with your tree stand. Where do you put your gear and how is that going to fit into that? I think, overall, though, I was pretty pleased. I’m pretty happy. Some notes – the one that holds twelve arrows, I carried six in it. You could put twelve in there; its plenty big for six. We have one that’s a six-arrow one in the batch we got. And that would be fine for six or fine for a lower number. I think that one thought there is that if you’re only going to carry three arrows, then get a six one; don’t get a twelve one because its just a little extra bulk that you don’t need. If you want to carry more arrows, if you want to carry six or more, then the twelve is fine. So, I would just throw that out there. The twelve arrow version is big enough for twelve, and you might feel like it’s a little too big if you’re only going to carry three. At the same, the six-arrow one you can fit six in. Just a note for sizing.

We also do have a left-handed one that you can get. And if you need a special one, we can special order that. There’s so much hand content that goes into these that doing a special order is not really a big deal. They’re all made one-by-one, anyway, and there’s so much labor that goes into it. It’s not a big deal. It is quiet. It definitely lives up to that name. There’s not a lot of noise. The only noise that you can have off this, one is unsnapping it and snapping the snaps for the strap; and those nylon snaps can be a little noisy. So, I think that’s a negative. But any strap you’ve got that if you want to unsnap it in the field, there’s going to be some noise. Other than that, it’s extremely quiet.

You may want to, when you place your arrows in there, spread them out. I just kind of slid six arrows in, in a bunch. And there was a little bit of noise when the shafts hit each other. But I only saw that noise when I was messing with the arrows and I was in the tree stand and, like, for example, I’m pulling an arrow out. One time there was a little bit of noise. Like I said, because I really didn’t put any time into placing the arrows carefully, I think the next time I do it, I’ll take the twenty seconds and just kind of spread those out. There’s a foam, a very robust foam, that the broadhead sinks down into and just spreads those broadheads out, so that they don’t touch. As I said, I was a little sloppy about that and it caused a little bit of noise in the tree stand. But, overall, it’s pretty doggone quiet, especially when you’re moving through the woods. It’s soft. But if you spread those arrows out, you’re just not going to have any noise come off of that.

And the other thing, too, is that you may want to consider if you’re going to attach this to your Hunter’s Friend, and you’ve shorten the straps, then you don’t need to unsnap it. If you want to snap it to something else, you may want to consider leaving a carabiner on your tree stand, and then dropping that, like, for example, on your tree belt, I’ll leave a rope, a static line on a tree belt. I’ll put it up first of the season. And then every time I go its already there; its not something I have to carry. And I can snap it and go up the tree stand safely, and come out of the tree stand. So, I’ll leave a carabiner up there.

So, another option, of course, is to take the strap that goes across your body and just drop that onto the carabiner, which is a little quieter than unsnapping. So, there again, that’s a matter, too, of you working out how your gear’s going to interact, and how you’re going to use it and a little training and a little practice and all’s good.

So, that’s kind of my review on the way back. I did not get a deer today. I did not take a deer. I saw three nice ones, and never had a shot. So, they’re deer. But, that’s alright. It’s always a learning experience. In this case, now, I’ve got a much better idea of some of the pattern that they’re following as they’re moving. Fortunately, I got to watch them follow that pattern as they left. But, fortunately, though, it was a nice day hunting. If we got something every time out, then it’d be a boring sport. It’s a nice activity. It’s nice to get out. I appreciate Al letting me use his place.

I hope that this helps you, not only with thinking about the Quiet Quiver and whether that’s something you want to own or give as a gift, but also, too, it gives you insight into, you know, some of my hunting experiences which I enjoy getting out to. There are people that are much better hunters than I am. But I definitely enjoy it. And occasionally I’ll harvest a deer, catch a fish. But, in the meantime, I’m pretty happy. Good day and a beautiful day, especially for late October. I’m hoping this weather doesn’t get too nasty before my trip to the mountains. The last couple years it wasn’t too bad. And the year before that it was just cold. When you roll out of that tent at seven degrees, nine degrees, that’s just cold. But, there again, it was beautiful. It was quiet. You could hear the dear walking towards you for, if felt like, a mile. Unfortunately, they could probably hear me for (felt like) a mile. But we’ll see what happens in a few weeks, and I’ll try to send you some pictures. And we’ll kind of go from there.

Thanks, and have a great weekend and enjoy your next hunting trip. And if you’re looking for a present for your hunter boyfriend or husband or brother or . . . ha-ha, or sister or wife that hunts; there’s a lot of women that enjoy hunting. So, if you need something as a present for them, then I would encourage you to check out some of our Montie Gear products. They’re pretty cool. It’s not something you’re going to see everywhere you go. We only make a few, and have a good time making them. So, it’s a little different approach. Made in America. And we make products pretty much the way we want to make them. A lot of times the way I want to make them. But I get a lot of input from the community, too, so its really not an “I”, it’s a “we”. And so, we end up with products that are different; they’re tough; they’re rugged; and you can be proud to give as a gift or maybe one day you’ll give it to your grandkids or your kids when they take up hunting. So, we try to make heirloom quality products for our outdoor gear that you can feel good about that you’re going to give as an heirloom.

The Quiet Quiver, it’s a soft case; we’ll see how that wears over time. If you take good care of it, it should last a lifetime. It’s built to. And the Hunter’s Friend, that’s aluminum and stainless steel; if you don’t bend it or do something crazy with it, then that should last multiple lifetimes.

So, this is Montie Roland. I am signing off. And I’m going to go put up my gear and see what my wife’s fixed to eat. So, thanks for listening and have a great day.

Design Story – Montie Gear in the Field – Hunter’s Friend

Montie’s Note:  Here is a Montie Gear product story that gives a insight into the design and a use case that includes testing and field use by the designer.  This was a customer newsletter item.

Fall is synonymous with whitetail deer hunting in the South.  Our wives become “deer widows” for 2-3 months while we disappear into the woods and look for that giant buck we’ve been watching for.  Wives get used to seeing their husbands up late at night looking a pictures from trail cams and learn to cook venison.  Saturday mornings are viewed from 20 feet up in a tree stand.  Good times and priceless moments. 

The Hunter’s Friend was initiated by a suggestion from Al Davis, owner of AllFab Solutions.  He is an avid hunter and wanted a way to hang his bow or rifle from a tree without having to run a screw into the tree and damage the tree.  A few weeks later, the Hunter’s Friend was born.

Getting your gear to the field and into the tree stand means work.  Gear that you take up to the tree must be compact, lightweight and easy to deploy.  Setting up your gear while you are hanging from a tree and 20 feet up means it must be well designed and flawlessly task at hand.  Anything else is just something that will get left at home.

The Hunter’s Friend holds your bow (or rifle) in the ready position.  Holding your bow, or rifle, in your lap can be tiring after a few hours.  The Hunter’s Friend solves that problem while keeping your bow at the ready position.  I also use it to hold my calls, binoculars and range finder.  It straps around the tree without damage so you keep the landowner happy.

I believe that we have 3 in stock so don’t delay in ordering yours, or suggest it as a gift.  Check out the pictures below from a recent hunt in Chatham County, NC.

Enjoy those priceless moments!

Click Here or on the image to order

Click Here or on the image to order

Click Here or on the image to order

Click Here or on the image to order


Write a Review – Get an Awesome Coupon!

Do really like your Montie Gear slingshot, AR-Rest or other product?  Help us tell the world about the Handmade, Heirloom Quality products that we make right here in NC!

Reviewing your Montie Gear product is a great way to give potential customers access to your opinion before they buy.  We’ve streamlined the review process to make it quick and easy for you.  Please a take a few minutes and review your Montie Gear products by going to www.montiegear.com, logging into your account, navigating to your favorite Montie Gear product at www.montiegear.com and then click on “Add Review”.  Once your review is submitted, please email me at montie@montie.com and I’ll email a coupon code good for 25% off your next purchase!

Philosophy
Our philosophy for Montie Gear products is pretty straight forward.  We provide “Heirloom Quality Products That are Troublesome Gap Tough”.  
 
Heirloom Quality
Many products in today’s world are meant to have a limited life time.  A good example is that cell phone that you need to replace every two years.  It works great, but over time technology changes and the fragile electronics have a limited lifetime.  We want to design and sell products that have a very long lifetime and may actually get passed along to your kids or grandchildren.  Many rifles get passed along from parent to children, sometimes marking a rite of passage.  Granted a shooting rest isn’t as special as your Grandfather’s rifle.  However, we work to design and sell products that are simple, elegant and high enough quality that you will want to pass them along to your kids or grandchildren.
Troublesome Gap Tough
Troublesome Gap is a place in Western North Carolina, near the peak of Hap Mountains and overlooking Spring Creek, NC.  My parents purchased the property over 40 years ago.  I grew up spending time there.  We cut firewood for heat, picked blackberries and raspberries, and spent some great weekends up there.  Troublesome Gap is remote and rugged, the prefect place to test our products.  Troublesome Gap Tough means that the products are rugged and easy-to-use.  A delicate, hard-to-use product is a liability in the field, so we avoid that by making sure all our products provide a great customer experience and are built to last, even in demanding conditions.

As President of Montie Design, I am proud the fact that we are shipping high-quality, U.S. made products.  I am also proud to be an American.

Sincerely,
Montie Roland
800-722-7987

montie@montie.com

Fun Product Design – Easy Camp Fires with Fatwood Kindling

Montie’s Note:  As product designers, we often obsess with QFD, House of Quality, Pairwise groupings, but some products are just simple and fun.  Here is a new product announcement for a Montie Gear product that we had fun with.  Here is an example of a simple and less serious outdoor sporting goods product that is very handy for the user in an outdoor environment.

In the pine trees found in Western NC, resin naturally accumulates over years of growth, creating what is locally known as Fatwood.  The resin impregnated pine wood makes a great fire starter.  One of our local outdoors experts, Bill, harvests our fatwood from the stumps of pine trees that were cut years earlier.

We all love sitting by the camp fire, but the toughest part about starting a campfire is the preparation.  Fatwood works as great kindling, as a small amount is all that is required to help you get the fire started.  Checkout out our Fatwood options at the Montie Gear store!

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Click on the image above to watch Bill’s video

.5 lb Bundle of Fatwood – Click to Order

.5 lb Bundle of Fatwood- Click to Order

1 lb Box of Fatwood- Click to Order

3/4 lb Fatwood Block- Click to Order

 

Philosophy
Our philosophy for Montie Gear products is pretty straight forward.  We provide “Heirloom Quality Products That are Troublesome Gap Tough”.  
 
Heirloom Quality
Many products in today’s world are meant to have a limited life time.  A good example is that cell phone that you need to replace every two years.  It works great, but over time technology changes and the fragile electronics have a limited lifetime.  We want to design and sell products that have a very long lifetime and may actually get passed along to your kids or grandchildren.  Many rifles get passed along from parent to children, sometimes marking a rite of passage.  Granted a shooting rest isn’t as special as your Grandfather’s rifle.  However, we work to design and sell products that are simple, elegant and high enough quality that you will want to pass them along to your kids or grandchildren.
Troublesome Gap Tough
Troublesome Gap is a place in Western North Carolina, near the peak of Hap Mountains and overlooking Spring Creek, NC.  My parents purchased the property over 40 years ago.  I grew up spending time there.  We cut firewood for heat, picked blackberries and raspberries, and spent some great weekends up there.  Troublesome Gap is remote and rugged, the prefect place to test our products.  Troublesome Gap Tough means that the products are rugged and easy-to-use.  A delicate, hard-to-use product is a liability in the field, so we avoid that by making sure all our products provide a great customer experience and are built to last, even in demanding conditions.As President of Montie Design, I am proud the fact that we are shipping high-quality, U.S. made products.  I am also proud to be an American.Sincerely,
Montie Roland
800-722-7987

montie@montie.com

Kanban Cards at Montie Gear

We use Kanban cards at Montie Gear to manage our inventory.  The purpose of the cards is to make sure we don’t run out of inventory so we have the products you want, when you want them.  Kanban is a way to use a simple formula to determine how much product to keep on hand by using customer demand and the time it takes to produce the product.  You can hear more about Kanban cards at:

http://montiegear.com/blog/lean-manufacturing-helps-us-serve-customers-better/

 

Lean Shipping Desk – How Montie Gear Does Lean Manufacturing

If you are going lean, the boss has to set the example.  One of the places where I spend a lot of time is at the shipping desk.  So my 2 second lean project for the week is cleaning up the shipping desk.  Here are the results.

Questions, comments, videos, suggestions are all welcome!

Montie
montie@montie.com