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The Highs & Lows of Crowdfunding! Part 2

Updated: Aug 27

Searching for a Win!

A crowded audience cheering.

Photo by Nicholas Green on Unsplash


My next contribution seemed to be well justified and founded. My wife had bought me a gift for my office, which I loved. The item was an aquarium named Ecoqube C. I loved the idea of having a small, ultra-low maintenance aquarium for my office. It proved to be a friendly habitat for a Betta fish and home for a small basil plant. When the Ecoqube C+ was announced on Indiegogo, I was instantly sold. It promised everything of the previous model, but a larger tank and more plants could be grown. The fish produces waste, the built-in filter turns the waste into fertilizer, and the plants flourish while keeping the tank clean. A handy LED lighting system is positioned above the aquarium. The LED lighting is fully equipped with a timing system and color-changing ability. I was an early backer and immediately invested in the dual aquarium offer saving 50 dollars bringing the total to around $200.

All inclusive aquarium and planter combination.

media by now-defunct EcoQube


As was typical, there were many updates based on manufacturing delays as dates were constantly being missed. Everything started to look promising in December of 2019 when the company sent an update to backers showing multiple pallets of packages ready to be shipped by container. I am uncertain of the exact time frame after that, but I have to call this one a near miss. I received both of my units and had my first successful experience. Why do I call this one a near miss? Just after I received my units, Ecoqube declared bankruptcy, and their inventory was seized. I was a fortunate backer, but many backers were left without product. This was one backing I came out unscathed or primarily unscathed. Service or replacement parts, forget it!

Having been burned twice and escaping my last contribution by the skin of my teeth, I was going to tread lightly on my next venture. I kept it simple when Hyper introduced a Gallium Nitride charger, which promised quick charging to 4 devices simultaneously. It was a credit-card-sized charger with 2 USB-C and 2 USB-A ports, and for a traveler such as myself, I was immediately on board. Early backers would save $30 off the retail price of $99. The campaign estimated I would receive my charger in July of 2020. They underpromised and over-delivered as the item arrived in June.

Charging cubes by Hyper.

media by Hyper


This was my first extremely successful contribution to an item as they renewed my hope for this outlet. Not to take anything away from my Ecoqube C+ tank, but Hyper is thriving with continuous releases of new products. This was indeed my first success story.

Continuing with my smaller contributions, I stumbled upon these charging cables by Vulcan.

Reinforced cables with alternating connection ends.

Vulcan Cables (media by Vulcan)


It was an extremely durable, nearly indestructible cable, which I like, but the hook was removable tips for various connections. I was most interested in the USB-C and lighting tips as I have both an iPhone and Ipad. They were a little pricy at two sets for around $70, but I had to try them out. As was the case with Hyper, these showed up early and ready to go. I had made another successful contribution. This company delivered as promised, and low and behold, they are still in business.

Maybe it was time to think bigger and press my luck! Part 3

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