What a learning experience! Since taking on this “project” I have been navigating in waters I never thought possible. How does one become an entrepreneur? I retired from the Federal court system after working 30 years. Retired Federal employees take their gold watch and go home, sleep late, play golf, spend time with the grandchildren and travel.

Now I like all those things, do them all and more, but an idea to fix a problem I was having with my golf swing changed me. I have fixed things around the house and on my car all my life, but have never made anything based on an idea, or vision. I talked to several of my golf buddies to see if they knew of anything that could help start the down swing. They did not, so I checked online where I found devices to fix, correct , ingrain and manipulate anything you wanted in a golf swing, but nothing impressed me with the downswing weight shift idea, so the project began.

So, to fix a problem I was having with my golf swing, not starting the downswing and not using my lower body during the downswing, I needed something under the front foot to help with the swing rhythm and correct my swing flaws. After considering many shapes and mechanisms I developed a switch that made contact when enough weight was applied to the front foot. The device was too high, so the next step was to make the switch as low as possible, make contact at the right time, and be sturdy enough to withstand the full weight of a golfer.

With Dremel in hand, I fashioned a device that operated as I intended, but was not sturdy enough for a golfer to stand on. The idea was now working, so protecting the idea was my next course of action. I worked with criminal lawyers for over thirty years, but knew nothing about patent lawyers. I did however know the judges that tried patent cases, so I now had a friendly, reliable resource to learn more about the patent process, and what I needed to do next to protect my idea. After considering different attorneys, I visited Bob Pitts, a patent attorney who worked in Knoxville many years. After reminiscing about Federal Judges and many people and stories we had in common, I presented Bob with my idea and the prototype I had made. Bob liked the idea, said he had never seen anything like it before, and suggested we do a previous art search to be certain the idea and mechanism had not been patented before.


So the adventure begins. Stay tuned…


Carl Papa is the inventor of the Pin High Pro.

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Comment by Leonard Knight on December 16, 2010 at 9:38pm

Most of the best ideas out there came from people "scratching their own itch".  It's usually a passion, you've searched for solutions, and really understand what's missing.  It makes sense that these are the best products, services, etc.


Great job!  I really appreciate you taking time to share your experiences with your fellow members of EOK!  We can all learn a great deal from your journey.  I look forward to your series as you walk us through the entire process start to ????


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