Research Foundation News

July 27, 2016

Purdue engineering students develop a practical solution to improve screw-on action camera mounts

boce switchback BOCE LLC, a tech startup founded by Purdue University undergraduate students, has created a solution for simplifying the adjustment process of action-camera mounts. The Switchback mount technology, which attaches between the camera and mount, allows users to quickly adjust their cameras into different angles as well as from one base to another without the hassle of changing mounts and screwing in and out multiple pieces. The Switchback is universally compatible with other existing bases. (BOCE LLC image) Download image

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – A team of Purdue University students have launched BOCE LLC, a tech startup developing an extension for existing action camera mounts that simplifies and speeds adjusting a camera's direction during action enthusiasts' adventures.

BOCE's Switchback mount allows users to quickly shift their cameras from one base to another without screwing in and out of different mounts. This universally compatible mount features a quick release and quick swivel with the help of a spring-pin mechanism. The technology benefits people who enjoy alternating their cameras while riding their equipment, without having to sacrifice valuable footage, positioning and time.

"Action cameras are supposed to be for action, and the screws that are currently on the cameras just don't let you keep up with it," said Adam Einck, a student in Purdue's College of Engineering and co-founder of BOCE. "There are no other camera mounts out there that really offer the speed of being able to switch between mounts without having to stop that ours does."

BOCE's other founding members include Gabby Behr, Alex Carr, and Louis Ortega, seniors in Purdue's School of Mechanical Engineering. Joran Booth, Ph.D., and the students' teaching assistant, also is a member of the team. Tahira Reid, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Purdue, has been a mentor for the team.  

Einck said the concept for this product stemmed from using a GoPro while visiting Yosemite National Park.

"A friend and I were using a GoPro and had to continuously undo the screws on the mount in order for the camera to face a different direction," he said. "After the trip, I used a CAD modeling program to start devising a better solution."

Einck further developed the idea through one of his mechanical engineering classes.

"About a year after I came up with the idea I was able to use it for a project in a Mechanical Engineering 263 sophomore design course. The design class ended with the creation of a functional 3-D print prototype of the Switchback," he said. "The Mechanical Engineering School loved the product, and convinced us to push for production."

BOCE has launched a Kickstarter campaign to help raise funds for production costs.

"We decided that crowdfunding was the best way to go because not only does it help us engage our customers, it also helps us identify who they are," Einck said.

With the help of the Purdue Foundry, an entrepreneurship and commercialization accelerator located in the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship in Purdue's Discovery Park, BOCE attended an iCorps customer discovery program. The company is working to further develop and improve the Switchback.

"We have a provisional patent, and hope to approach GoPro in the future to talk about our design. I would really like to see it take off, and then explore other GoPro accessories that could use our technology and benefit users," Einck said. "This is just the start of what can be created to help the GoPro community."

About Purdue Foundry

Purdue Foundry is an entrepreneurship and commercialization accelerator in Discovery Park's Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship. The Purdue Foundry collaborates with longstanding activities already taking place in the center with a goal to increase the growing demand from Purdue innovators who have an interest in forming a startup or licensing their discoveries. 

Writer: Belia Mercado, BMercado@prf.org

Media contact: Hillary Henry, Purdue Research Foundation, 765-588-3586, hkhenry@prf.org

Source: Adam Einck, aeinck@purdue.edu


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