Great Ideas that didn't go anywhere - yet

New postings August 18, 2010

Magic Seat Board of 1970s

Finally shown to Iron Butt Riders in 2010.

2007 Energy Absorbing Device

A friend, Henry, rounded the corner on his BMW to find a mountain lion in his path. The impact killed the beast and put Henry in the hospital with a broken collar bone. It would be better to be able to absorb such an impact more gradually. Therefore, I designed this frame-mounted device. Fortunately, I have not had to use it.

1965: Cardboard muffler
In the 1960s, I raced my Bridgestone 90 on the streets of Champaign, Illinois. Things were different then. An open tuned pipe can be very loud so I invented this early CAD (Cardboard Aided Design) muffler. Three cardboard boxes were inside. The exhaust blew into the inner box which had a small hole on the opposite side to leak out of into the next box and so on. Eack layer was lined with paper mache egg crate dividers. The final cardboard chimney exhausted straight up.

It was very quiet and, no, it never caught on fire. It was my mini bike muffler that caught on fire.

The Bridgestone Trail 90 had a great rack. Perfect for a large muffler. Size is critical to good muffling.
1995 Dresser Helmets: This great idea was based around helmets that reflected the classic American shapes of the Indian and Harley front fenders. I used real fender trim and color schemes and took them to a major helmet manufacturer.

They never went anywhere because the major helmet manufacturer had no insurance.

Vetter Design "Dresser" Helmets
2002 Spinal Column Protector
These three Great Ideas were submitted to Emhart Publishing in an invention contest in 2002.

I won nothing with these Geat Ideas.

I leave it up to you to decide if they have merit.

This is an airplane stowable, fold up electric scooter for airport use. Great for that long trip from A-12 to D-12
The 2002 Vetter SmartRamp allows one person to load a big motorcycle into a pickup truck.
2001 October: I designed and made this inexpensive Anthrax Mail Fliter

Somebody was sending mail with anthrax dust in it. Pretty scarey? This Great Idea was to show folks how to make a $40 filter that could be used safely indoors to open mail. I actually had a web page dedicated to this. It seemed like a smart thing to do.

The Peace Shield of 1968
While I was designing the Series 1500 fairing in August, 1968 the police of Chicago a hundred miles to the north were billy clubbing demonstrators at the Democratic Convention. My brother, Bruce and I thought we could help. We made a shield of fibreglass and Bruce inlayed it with leather in the shape of a Peace Sign. It was passive. It made a peaceful statement. It was strong and would protect you from billy clubs. It never made it as a product.
Our potential market didn't want protection. They wanted to get beat up and make the TV news. Those guys didn't have any money, anyway. We made one Peace Shield. It hangs on my brother's wall in Illinois.
The well dressed protester could have worn a Vetter Fairing.
Propeller driven Go Kart of 1961
I am sure that some of you have thought that it might be a good idea to use a propellor to move you along. In 1961, I carved a prop for my Homelite chainsaw engine and built a go kart for it. Here's what happens:

It blows oily, stingy stuff in your eyes

It accelerates very slowly.

You don't want to do this.

Hooking it up to the rear wheels made it go a lot faster.

1968 Dragster Wheelchair
Yep, that is my brother,Bruce. Yep, thats a parachute on back. For some ideas, there is just no market.
Wanna see my brother today?
1970 Ram Wing
The idea was to be towed behind a boat and fly, standing on the wing. I didn't have a boat so we towed it behing my Divco truck. Checkout my QuickTime movie:
1970 Still Water Aerator
In 1970, Alcoa approached me, as an aspiring young designer and asked me to design something special out of their aluminum. My first idea was the Ram wing, above. But I simply did not have the time or resources to sort the Ram Wing out. With a deadline looming, I decided to invent a sun powered air pump that would help to keep ponds from scumming over with algae. The Still Water Aerator automatically cycled a big rubber diaphram up and down, inside the aluminum can, taking big gulps of air and pushing that air thru submerged tubing at the bottom of the pond
1973 Rocket Wheelchair
In 1973, I attatched a couple of the biggest Estes rocket motors I could buy to a wheelchair. Sorry about the jiggly image. The camera man was un-nerved by the sound and the fury.
2002 Air Scooter

Flying on less than 100 hp

Page posted Aug 28, 2008

Updated Jun 21, 2011