DeluxGear: The Early Days
Mike and Sandy Dowell are a close team. For years they worked the dog show circuit photographing prized canines for enthusiastic owners. They participate in all genera’s of photography including a wide variety of special events.
As with any profession, equipment damage is a constant concern. Mike is known for saying “A photographer with a broken lens becomes nothing more than a spectator”. During their travels they would watch for accessories that would prevent problems like dented, scratched or broken lenses as well as relieve neck and shoulder fatigue. Often discouraged with what they found, Mike and Sandy started designing their own solutions. Thus, DeluxGear was born.
According to Sandy “Being involved with the design and production of our own patented products is especially exciting to me,” Another perk is that it fulfills our desire to create while providing others with dependable, top quality products.
The first product to be designed and developed was the Lens Cradle, it was closely followed by a series of quality neoprene two and four point camera straps, and when combined became the Lens Cradle lens support system. They selected eBay for their product marketing, testing and proving ground. After the success of the Lens Cradle they developed and launched the first three sizes of Lens Guards; small, medium and large.
With very positive feedback to the proven products, a patent for the Lens Cradle has been awarded and with two additional patents pending, it was time to expand.
Mike and Sandy knew it was time to grow and take DeluxGear to the next stage. In late spring of 2011 DeluxGear teamed up with Gateway manufacturing and their 80,000 square foot assembly plant. DeluxGear continued to grow with a number of national and international distributors and resellers.
With fall approaching, DeluxGear announced the release of the PinPoint. The PinPoint is described as a laser device designed to acquire a focus lock in low light or monochromatic photography. It works because it is the brightest point in front of the camera. The PinPoint is also ideal for overcoming difficult situations that require precise focus.
In the spring of 2012 DeluxGear decided it was time to complete the Lens Guard line while fulfilling the demand for protecting lenses with the hoods in use, that resulted in the release of four larger sizes of Lens Guards; the X-Large, 2X-Large Jumbo and Giant. The stage was set and in the summer of 2012 DeluxGear introduced its latest new product line known as the Lens Bumper. The Lens Bumper protects the camera lens while in use, and can be used in conjunction with a hood or sun shade, it is also available in the same sizes as the Lens Guard.
With the completion of the Lens Guard line and the arrival of the Lens Bumper, DeluxGear decided to introduce some splash to their line up. DeluxGear will be offering the Lens Guards and Lens Bumpers in five bold new colors blue, red, yellow, tan and green while still maintaining the original black product line.
The owners of DeluxGear, who are also the product designers and engineers, have realized how tough it can be to maintain and preserve the quality of photographic equipment. DeluxGear represents years of first-hand experience that has turned into a passion for overcoming some of the day-to-day obstacles that all photographers are confronted with. Products for photographers by photographers…
DeluxGear is located in Lexington, KY, USA. Our products are made in Kentucky and we are dedicated to helping take some of the pain and worry out of photography, by providing accessory solutions for your Digital SLR gear. Please email us, or contact us via LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter.