Heelys, the skate-shoes with a hidden wheel
Nano, an inline footboard that bridges a gap between traditional Heelys and skateboards, aiming to retain the utility of the former, while seizing the toughness and customizability of the latter.
The Nano needed a material tough enough to endure the hammer they would inevitably get. To appeal to their market, the Nano features swappable lenticular inserts and offers special editions with LED wheels. These artistic qualities required a material that would maintain its clarity over an extended period of time. “We wanted something that can be clear, or tinted, but still strong and durable,” explained Ryan Wills, director of innovation for Heelys. “We needed a material that would withstand the impact and rigors of daily use with a reasonable level of wear.” Wills also needed a BPA free material with excellent mechanical strength that could be easily injection molded.
All-Plastics Molding, Inc., of Addison, Texas, recommended Tritan, a BPA free alternative to polycarbonate that’s impact-resistant and durable. “Tritan is exactly what I was looking for,” stated Wills. He added “The whole thing with wheels in and graphic and axles weighs slightly less three pounds. The average wall thickness of the board is about 3.5 millimeters. The chassis is in two pieces with a tongue and groove around the outside and it’s screwed together with nine stainless steel screws.”
The design of the Nano has already attracted international attention, winning a 2011 iF (International Forum) product design award.