General Expedition and Adventure Research (GEAR) Enterprise

Institution: Michigan Technological University
Funders (10)
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Why This Project Is Important 

GEAR Enterprise focuses on designing, modeling, testing, prototyping and manufacturing a wide variety of goods and equipment used in recreational outdoor and commercial expedition endeavors. The outdoor recreation sector is an expansive consumer industry, which provides an opportunity for further education and innovation for students, and companies. This large scope of application for enterprise operations allows for the incorporation of a wide variety of student interests, academic opportunity and industry support. GEAR Enterprise will serve two main functions: 1) Partner with businesses to test and develop outdoor recreation gear and 2) foster independent product development with the aim of advancing existing technologies.

Project Description 

Gear Enterprise is in the developmental stage and we are trying to establish a strong foundation for future members to follow. Currently, we are seeking to start projects that will allow us to expand our knowledge of design, fabrication and team building so in the future we are thoroughly prepared to work with companies and provide professional services, including testing, research, and product innovation. These initial projects, listed below, will provide a unique opportunity to achieve our current goals, and also potentially provide products that can be used by consumers. To execute these projects, we will have to involve ourself in various machine, and computer software training.

  • Portage Paddle: Portaging: The act of carrying a personal watercraft over land, between two bodies of water. The Portage Paddle Concept design was created to aid in the portaging of kayaks and canoes, a fairly cumbersome task. Our design will resemble a 'portage yolk' found on many canoes, allowing the consumer to portage two kayaks, or canoes simultaneously. The purpose of this project is to familiarize ourself with the engineering design process and computer software.
  • Rad Therm: The RadTherm is a program developed by ThermoAnalytics and simulates thermal distribution and responses to this in the human body; we can see how heat effects humans. Our team will learn the operation and limitations of the program, and familiarize ourself with the materials and simulations available so heat transfer analysis can be applied to further research fabrics, human response, and other areas GEAR is involved in.
  • Machine and Shop Training: Michigan Tech has numerous machine shops and workrooms that are available for student use. Team members will branch out and specialize in a field of machining, broadening our knowledge of tools and enhancing our capabilities as an Enterprise. A few of the machines we will work with require pre-requisite training before any operation is to be done. Once trained, specialty machines, such as an abrasive machine for testing abrasive properties, are rented out by the hour or day. Our use of these machines is closely tied with our budget and training, and could limit our capabilities if we cannot rent time for their use.

Meet the Researchers

GEAR Enterprise

GEAR Enterprise at Michigan Technological University
GEAR Enterprise Mission Statement
To provide students with professional experiences with industry-fueled projects and team-based learning through the design, testing, analysis and prototype of outdoor adventure and expedition equipment
A Truly Unique Opportunity for Your Company
The GEAR Enterprise seeks to take advantage of the ideal location for innovation in outdoor recreation equipment by bringing together highly motivated engineering students from all disciplines and a growing Outdoor Adventure Program. As a partner or sponsor, your benefits include a fresh look at design challenges and potential solutions through the eyes of an unbiased team, access to university facilities and faculty experience, exposure to the latest tools, techniques, and theory from a premier institution, firsthand observation of your future workforce and networking with talented students who have strong technical and business skills as well as passion for the outdoors.
What Does Sponsoring GEAR Look Like?
GEAR is an Engineering Consultant Firm of Students at Michigan Technological University. We are ready to take on your technical-based design and analysis problems including Thermal, Biomechanics, Materials, Prototype, Load/Force Analysis, Product 3D/2D CAD Design, and additional services.
GEAR is a member of the Enterprise Program at Michigan...

Brett Hamlin

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of $5,000 fund goal
The average donation for this project is $56
days left
Funding is Closed

What Your Donation Can Help Us Do: 

  • With every donation GEAR receives, it ensures that we will have quality equipment and resources to educate and develop our mission as an Enterprise. Funding allows us to branch out and utilize software and tools that are essential to our sustainable research and development of ideas through a secure financial base. Contributions will directly benefit our Enterprise team
  • Cover the cost of sophisticated machine and software training.
  • Cover the rental dues for Michigan Tech machines.
  • Purchase materials such as fabrics, metals, composites, ext.
  • Support opportunities for the team to interact with leading industry companies, such as outdoor conventions.
  • Cover equipment purchased by the GEAR Enterprise Team.

$1+ 10 Funders

Postcard featuring GEAR team on an outdoor activity

$50+ 6 Funders

3-D printed GEAR logo keychain

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Gifts to projects listed on SUPERIORIDEAS.ORG are received and processed by Michigan Tech Fund. Michigan Tech Fund is a tax-exempt organization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code acting on behalf of Michigan Technological University. It is the policy of Michigan Tech Fund that a portion of the gifts and/or income therefrom may be used to defray the costs of raising and administering the funds.