While the company’s manufacturing facility is in California, Sacksteder’s Philadelphia setup is ideal for prototyping, design, and brainstorming. Equipois is one of NextFab Studio’s resident companies, and he says he chose NextFab in part because of “the exposure to equipment and access to human skills.”
“I was surprised by the quality and knowledge of the staff and some of the community members – it’s been fertile ground for the exchange of ideas,” Sacksteder says.
There’s a personal element to Sacksteder’s location, as well. A trained artist who ran a sculpture studio in years past, he says he always thought “it would be a wonderful idea to have a collaborative artist workspace,” but noted the cost of such space and materials is often prohibitive for artists. “Unfortunately, I shied away from that when I realized that would become my work, not the art. I’m glad to see Evan [Malone, founder of NextFab] has taken up that case in a modern sense…For me, this felt like a natural fit.”
“I had been watching NextFab since you were in West Philly,” Tony Sacksteder says with a grin. “I’ve always been interested in this type of facility.”
Sacksteder, Philadelphia native, is vice president of technology for the Los Angeles-based venture startup Equipois, heading the company’s Philadelphia-based R&D and product design arm. Equipois manufactures zeroG, a mechanical arm based on Steadicam technology – the same technology that revolutionized the motion picture industry and earned its inventor and Equipois collaborator Garrett Brown an Oscar. zeroG modifies the Steadicam’s trademark harness for industrial tool applications, for industries ranging from defense to mining to automotive. It’s like the robotic arm exoskeleton you always wished you had.