Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Why didn't anyone think of this before?

Under the heading of "Amazingly Useful Inventions" must surely be classified the Waterbuoy.

It's a small keychain-size flotation device, designed for those who enjoy water sports, particularly boating and sailing. If it's dropped overboard - or, rather, if the article to which it's attached is lost overboard - a balloon inflates, an internal LED light illuminates, and it makes it relatively easy to recover what's gone astray. It can support a weight of up to a kilogram (2.2 pounds).

How I wish this had been available in my younger days! I've lost a pair of (very expensive) binoculars over the side of a yacht, and friends have lost keys, cameras, sporting equipment - even, in one well-remembered tragedy, an heirloom piece of jewelry. Imagine if each of those things had had a Waterbuoy clipped to it! It would have saved a great deal of money, and much heartache. It's a great idea, and I hope the inventor makes a fortune out of it.

In hindsight, of course, one has to ask why someone didn't think of this before. Why was so blindingly obvious a solution, not so blindingly obvious?



Anonymous said...

It is an interesting idea, but how much water is their "1 kg" mass displacing? I would be more impressed if it was a 1kg rock or something of similar density.

George said...

I used to have a yellow-coloured spongy float for my boat keys. It did work. I tested it once.

Unfortunately, as you stated, the flotation device has to be attached to your "treasured item". I was working at the stern rail ... the pulpit ... of my C&C 35 one day ... and finished with my wife's multi-tool ... which ... in a moment of total brain fart ... I gracefully tossed overboard. She couldn't believe it. I couldn't believe it. All I could think of was that I must have thought I was laying it down on the cockpit locker top. I dunno ... but it didn't have any floater attached.

Anonymous said...

That photo is an optical illusion, I think...The weight is sitting on the bottom of the basin, and they just filled the basin with enough water to make it look as if the two things are floating. Unless that balloon is super rigid, which is probably unlikely due to the space it fits into, there should be way more stretch in the submerged portion. And, I've just realized, the darn thing should be hanging crooked anyway because the center of gravity is in-line with where the clip on the buoy's attached...