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It started with a cold beer, a bike ride, and “Boy, it would be nice to have a bottle opener.” Maker Todd Lenig realized his cycling multi-tool had screwdrivers, spoke wrenches, and quick fixes galore… But it lacked the ultimate gadget for recreational riders — a bike-mounted bottle opener.

“I thought, ‘Why not give it a shot?’ Now is as good a time as any,” Lenig said.

That go-for-it mindset gave way to the PubNub, a bottle opener conveniently anchored to the handlebar of practically any bike. The gadget is one among a growing family of bike-mounted devices Lenig and his startup company NubNub prototype, produce, and market.

A recreational cyclist with a business background, Lenig became a full-time Maker and entrepreneur after he lost his job at a transportation company. Today, his office is a bicycle and every ride is an opportunity for entrepreneurship.

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With every mid-ride A-ha! moment, Lenig adds a new gadget to his must-make list. He’s in the patent process for a bike-mounted multi-tool that complements the PubNub and plans to prototype a PubNub upgrade, nicknamed the “ClubNub.”

With every new idea come new doubts.

“There are a lot of people who have good ideas, but there’s a fear factor involved,” Lenig said. “There can be a ‘Steer clear from failure’ perspective.”

But Lenig is more interested in steering his bike down the road. After all, he has gadgets to make… and a cold one to crack open.

“We are all about recreation,” Lenig said. “We are all about enjoying the ride.”

Lenig will be at the Des Moines Mini Maker Faire this Monday, September 7, so get your tickets today.

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