3D printing of fishing gear and R&D tax credits – 3DPrint.com
Are you planning a fishing trip or are you just going to the lake early in the morning to catch some bait? Either way, a proper fishing rod is one of the most important factors for success on the water. Avid anglers know that to get the best bite it is important to fish with the right equipment in a specific spot without scaring the fish away. Using the right equipment will allow for a quick and successful bait cast, and 3D printing can help.
Upon arrival at the lake, many anglers will first examine the water to determine which bait or lure to use. In addition to the target species and skill level of anglers, water conditions such as temperature, clarity, and light levels often dictate the types of fishing approach that are best suited. Different combinations of these factors require the use of specific baits and lures, all of which are available in many different styles. Companies involved in the 3D printing of fishing rods and other necessary equipment are eligible for R&D tax credits.
Research & Development Tax Credit
Adopted in 1981, the now permanent federal research and development (R&D) tax credit provides a credit that generally ranges from 4% to 7% of eligible expenses for new and improved products and processes. Qualified research must meet the following four criteria:
- Must be technological in nature
- Must be a component of the taxpayer’s business
- Should represent R&D in an experimental sense and generally includes all costs related to the development or improvement of a product or process
- Must eliminate uncertainty through a process of experimentation that considers one or more alternatives
Eligible costs include salaries for US employees, the cost of supplies consumed in the R&D process, the cost of pre-production testing, US contract research expenses, and certain costs associated with patent development.
On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed the PATH Act, making the R&D tax credit permanent. Starting in 2016, the R&D credit can be used to offset the alternative minimum tax for companies with revenues below $ 50 million and for the first time pre-profitable and pre-income start-ups can use the credit against $ 250,000 per year in payroll taxes.
Engineers innovate in 3D printed fishing gear. For example, Quantum, a company that combines high performance materials to develop innovative products for the fishing industry, uses the latest 3D printing technologies to create a sleek and ergonomic reel design. The company guarantees long-lasting equipment with long-lasting performance by using precision 3D computer design software, followed by computer stress analyzes. The final designs are then 3D printed and undergo a series of quality and durability lab tests. This iterative process allows for a reel design with minimal excess weight without sacrificing strength which is a major factor when fishing.
Anglers can now test their own lures on the water. One of the main ways to attract fish is to use different types of lures. As mentioned earlier, the type of lure to use is highly dependent on the water conditions. To be successful in any environment, decoys can be easily 3D printed in different shapes, sizes and colors.
Jacob Stanton, an industrial designer based in Chicago, created and tested 3D printed fishing lures. With a keen interest and curiosity in materials science and technology, Stanton let his creativity run wild with the speed and versatility that 3D printing has to offer during the prototyping process. Printing techniques used include pausing in the middle of printing to include rattles, as well as the print-in-place model, where multiple moving parts are printed without the need for assembly. A variety of lure designs have been developed including segmented swim baits, hollow minnow baits, double bladed baits, and topwater baits.
When buying fishing rods, anglers look for a product that is light and flexible for a good casting, but sturdy and powerful for landing a fish. MakeXYZ is equipped with several unique, user-made fishing rod designs including small fishing rods. Prints are also available for smaller components such as rod holders, line guides, reel handles and cranks, which may break or be damaged during use. Having the ability to customize, print and replace these parts in advance or as needed can be of great benefit to anglers who plan ahead. It also eliminates the need to replace an expensive rod or purchase a new component, thus extending the life of their equipment.
3D printing has spread to the largely unspoken aspect of fishing that involves storage and organization. Right now, there are many designs available on Thingiverse that will provide anglers with the files needed to print tackle boxes, reel compartments, storage trays as well as spare parts, such as latches and tackle box handles. This is beneficial for those with specific fishing gears – maybe even some that are 3D printed.
3D printing is rapidly revolutionizing the way businesses develop and test their products. The fishing industry is no different. Technical activities such as the design of fishing equipment and the development of prototypes provide excellent opportunities to obtain credits that can be used to obtain cash rebates that can be used to offset tax payable. Companies that use 3D printing at any stage of the development process may be eligible for federal and state R&D tax credits.
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Charles Goulding and Alize Margulis from R&D Tax Savers discuss 3D printing in the fishing industry.