Joseph Ellul, President of Ellul Enterprises, enjoys creating new and outstanding products with his own special flair. He has several creations that span from consumer products to an Internet application, and others. Contact Joe to expand your horizons, discuss an adventure, or find a new way to surpass your expectations.
Creating new and innovative products makes the world go around. Just look at what has happened to the telephone in our lifetime. Without creative innovation, life as we know it would come to an abrupt halt. In fact, stimulating new thoughts through open innovation promotes growth and is the driving force behind businesspeople around the globe.
Have you heard reports of children being trapped in a fire and wondered if anything could have saved them? Joe’s life changed one evening when he heard a newscaster say that two children died in a house fire. The girls simply turned the wrong way and could not find an exit door in the smoke.
LifePath is not a smoke, heat, carbon monoxide, or whole-house alarm. It is a residential fire emergency escape "Exit Marking" appliance that listens for your existing audible alarm then triggers an ultrabright strobe light designed to penetrate smoke, a low-tone sound, and a hot spot warning. When installed at exit locations, light and sound automatically illuminate and direct an escape path Under The Smoke.
After testing his idea in a real-life home fire, a fire rescue spokesperson said, "LifePath will allow a child to see the avenue of escape and associate the light with safety."
Our Safety Net is a great new way to get organized, prepare for the unexpected, and plan for the future. Easy-to-use, this is a time-saving way to keep all of your essential records in one safe place. Now is the time to preserve your legacy and safeguard your family for the future. Tomorrow may be too late.
Imagine all the ways a system like this can protect your loved ones.
During the summer of 1964, Joe developed his first invention at the ripe old age of sixteen. At this point, his life revolved around school, work, and his personal bedroom space. Although sharing a room with a younger brother was fun at times, it also limited your privacy.
He purchased a new stereo system but did not know where to keep it safe in the small area. Back then, a stereo amplifier, a turntable for records, a tuner, and speakers were quite large. A simple table would not work because he wanted to keep it secure so it would not become his little brother's plaything. He decided to build a unit that would enclose the stereo components inside the table.
The next day, he found a cabinetmaker to help him with the project. He displayed a drawing of the table and explained how he wanted it built. With minimal cash on hand, they agreed to build the table and accept small payments as the project progressed.
With the table construction in place, the next step was to create a drive system that would move the center portion of the table up and down, James Bond style, at the press of a button. He went to a welding engineer to build the custom system. Once he explained the idea to him, the necessary parts were acquired, and the device was under way. This picture shows how a similar idea is used today, installed in a cabinet with a pop-up flat-screen television.
In the early 1970s, Joe loved to go pheasant, quail, and rabbit hunting with his friends in the Michigan fall. It didn't take long before he had two lovable dogs of his own that he could train and have fun with during hunting season. As the dogs grew, so did their thirst for water. The bowls were replaced with pots and then a large pail, but it still wasn't enough. He thought that if the pail were accidentally knocked over and no one was home, the dogs would go without water.
To solve the problem, he bought a new galvanized mop bucket and a toilet float/valve assembly from the local store. He anchored the pail to the side of the house and redesigned the toilet float to adapt to the bucket. The water supply line was revised to accept a standard garden hose fitting. After that, as long as the water spigot was open, the dogs had as much water as they needed. This picture shows how a similar idea is used today.
In 1979, Joe leased a vacant Big Boy restaurant and converted it into a swimming pool store. In the competitive world of retail pools, chemicals, and spas, Aqua World stood out from the rest with elaborate displays on a busy street corner.
At the time, hot tubs and spas were sold as do-it-yourself kits. Selling spas in this manner was difficult, so one winter he decided to create a new design that was easy to install.
He ordered the smallest fiberglass spa shell available from his manufacturer, along with the plastic mini jets. The pump, heater, blower, and filter components were not a problem because he always had ample parts in the store. His goal was to build a freestanding, self-contained 110-volt tub with an enclosure that would hide the plumbing pipes and operating system.
Plumbing the jets with standard PVC pipe was not easy; however, using an array of plumbing elbows, he completed the task. A pool pump and cartridge filter were installed to keep the water clean.
The next question was, "How do you heat the water?" A standard gas swimming pool heater was not practical for interior use. To find a solution, he went to the local Detroit Edison office to check out electric water heater elements. He purchased several 110-volt elements that would be small enough to fit inside a one and one-half inch pipe.
On his first try, he installed the heating element directly inside the PVC pipe. He thought it would work okay as long as water was running through the pipe when the heater was turned on. He was wrong, as the pipe quickly melted and ruined the element. He tried again, only this time the element was installed inside a section of galvanized steel pipe. This worked fine, but it took several days to heat the 180 gallons of water in the tub. In another attempt, he used a small secondary pump to circulate the water through the heater. The pump and heater were connected together on a single 110-volt switch. The water was hot within a day.
One evening, as he decided to take a relaxing break in the warm water, another problem came to mind. The electrical extension cords were hanging on the side of the tub’s enclosure. Water and electricity don't mix. The next day, with a few microswitches, a miniature homemade camshaft, a carburetor vacuum choke, and a turkey baster, he built an air-activated switch.
A few weeks later, the owner of his swimming pool and hot tub manufacturer stopped by to see how the project was going. Mark was amazed and asked if he could contact other companies about the discovery. Throughout that summer, Joe assisted three hot tub manufacturers in developing the portable spa.
In 1988, Joe noticed a problem that he knew could be resolved with a little ingenuity. If you enjoy playing an occasional game of pool on a coin-operated bar table, you know how aggravating it can be when you don't have all fifteen balls to rack and play the game. This problem occurs when a cube of cue chalk falls into the ball return track and blocks some of the balls from returning to the appropriate location inside the table.
Pool Chalk Saver is a cue chalk dispenser uniquely designed for vending pool tables. Five pieces of standard cue chalk are placed in the dispenser, which is then mounted to each side of a pool table under the middle pockets.
The player applies cue chalk by inserting the pool cue tip into either end of the dispenser and rotating the stick, similar to using a pencil sharpener. As the chalk is used, the cue tip continues to drill a hole through to the next block of chalk.
This innovation resolved three problems for amusement operators.
The players were also happy to see that chalk was easily accessible and they did not have to play the game with fewer balls than intended.
At the 1989 Billiard Congress of America (BCA) trade show in Las Vegas, Joe's marketing team introduced Pool Chalk Saver to the billiard industry. The product was such a hit that several other vendors stopped by to see if they were giving money away. People were so enthusiastic about our concept that they walked right past all the other booths to find us at the show. Within three days, we established distribution throughout the United States and Canada.
One evening, we were invited to attend the Mike Segal Hall of Fame banquet. Joe had a wonderful time meeting all the top players, and it was a huge surprise when Willie Mosconi decided to sit in the chair next to him for dinner instead of at the head table next to Fats. Willie told Joe his life story about how he played pool while standing on a milk crate as a youngster while his father made side bets on the game.
Sometime later, Joe signed a license with Miller Brewing to use their logo on Pool Chalk Saver.
Feel free to get in touch, but if you would like me to reply, please include your contact information.