Equestrian tool design | Case study for product design services
Broomraker product with entrepreneur Karen Cholerton and her horse on the farm
Broomraker product logo showing it is Made in Britain

Inspiration for new products can come from all different types of experience. For inventor, Karen Cholerton, her spark of inspiration was when she was cleaning out the grooves on her Ifor Williams horse trailer. She was amazed that she couldn’t find an equestrian trailer tool online that didn’t fit into the grooves to completely clean them out. Feeling frustrated, she started sketching.

Her idea evolved as she began to think about the task in hand – to do the job properly she’d need both a rake and a brush. So why not combine the two? She sketched out her idea and soon realised she could create a multi-tool but needed help to make it a reality. That’s when she met with Simple Design Works to discuss her idea.

Broomraker initial concept product development ideas and sketches for client

The importance of prototyping

We explored Karen’s idea through conceptual design to determine what it should do, behave like and look like for users. The tool could be used by all ages so it needed to be lightweight and comfortable. Of course, it also had to rake effectively. Therefore creating a sample to test was absolutely essential.

Physical prototyping allowed us to fully test the product in context for assessing the functionality and durability, as well as test different aspects of the design throughout the development stage. These aided us in defining details such as the ergonomics of the handle and tooth spacing. The project was moving towards a thoroughly refined concept to produce CAD for further prototyping purposes.

Broom and rake equestrian tool render
Top of the prototype of the Broomraker tool showing logo

The detail is in the design

The teeth on the head were designed to fit the grooves of an Ifor Williams trailer. This allows the user to remove any trapped dirt from the flooring. Once the dirt is loosened, you simply flip the brush and sweep up the mess. Made of a robust material allowed the tool to withstand pressure so could be used for breaking up and spreading shaving bales, as well as clean stables. When testing the first prototype, Karen discovered that it was so much more than an equestrian tool but also worked well in the garden too. Its versatility is how it got its name. A broom, a rake – BroomRaker!

Karen went on to pitch BroomRaker on Channel 4’s Buy It Now For Christmas. The show features inventors showcasing their products to an audience of typical consumers. It’s now a firm fixture in country stores across the UK as well as the BroomRaker website.

Photo of broom and rake cleaning tool being tested in trailer by client of Simple Design Works
Prototype of broom and rake tool shown from the side

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