Imagine what this guy could have don if he had that nice little badge on his Jeep.
... likely would have known instantly that the tie rod is not a snatch point.
Mat, with all your fab product posts, it's looking more and more like you have decided what your future job will be - in business for yourself designing and marketing products for the 4x4 and expo markets. In the meantime, get the WCB to pay for the training you want/need.
I'm doing my fabrication work for 2 reasons, one is because i love it, and two is that eventually I want it to be my full time business but it's far from that now.
Prime example is that lack of feedback I am getting from the rest of the forum about the jerry can holders, at least a comment of "it's total crap and wouldn't take it for free" would tell me that people are paying attention.
The market is over saturated with cheap crap and trying to be a fabricator is very difficult. Right now, it is not my primary focus, but if it takes off (like I am hoping), I will do it 100%.
As for training.....what is WCB going to do for me in this field, no point in going to school for 4 years to get a piece of paper that only I will see and will teach me maybe one or two things that I can't teach myself from research and self education. If I have taught myself how to use solidworks, illustrator, photoshop, indesign, taught myself how to create a magazine from scratch and create bumpers, what the hell is WCB going to teach me to better my business? I know I suck at the business side and administration, tried it and failed, for that I need another person. No point in going to business school as it won't sink in with me.
So I go back to doing what I love while I'm trying to line up doing what will pay the bills
Thought of targeting a forum with more long range travel in mind? Expo comes to mind, lots on there looking for different well made products to add to there trucks.
Just a thought, using the cruiser community although fairly large is good its still not give you a whole market exposure something like this taking off needs (jerry can holders and tire carriers included).
Also getting a few samples of the product goes a long ways with people. Seeing Pictures from solid works is nice but no one is going buy anything till they see pictures of the real thing in use (talking jerry cans and tire carrier again here). I know for myself I would like to see one and see if I can incoperate it into my idea of what I want for fuel can storage and transport (Jerry can holder).
Now that we can see the pic, that is probably not from a strap, that is probably from hitting a rock with it and then as he tried climbing up that rock ledge the dent or small bend just let go. Problem with keeping things light and cheap, is once bigger tires are added and the truck starts getting used in places it wasn't designed for, things start breaking! Needs a trail unproven sticker
John and Jeremy are right, the smaller products you have are universal and could get a lot more attention on other forums. I'm sure Jeep and Land Rover enthusiasts would be interested in your products as well. The stuff you design and build is top notch and I'm sure there are people with deeper pockets that want to build up there trucks with nice equipment.