Teen’s invention shown in south
A 13-year-old entrepreneur from Matamata has made his trading debut at this year’s Canterbury A& P show.
Patrick Roskam invented the Gudgeon Pro for a science fair two years ago and the device has since sold internationally.
The tool enables farmers to drill straight and accurate holes for gudgeons, the mechanisms which fastened gates to a fence post enabling them to open and close.
This prevented the gates from dragging on the ground, Patrick said.
Raised on a dairy farm, the Matamata College student had the brainwave for his invention when his father Michael bought a new farm and found himself with 20 gates to hang.
‘‘He likes everything perfect, so it took him a very long time to hang them,’’ Patrick said.
‘‘I thought there could be a better way to do it.’’
His design, which has undergone several evolutions, was based on an existing gudgeon level.
‘‘It was a strap-on one which everyone hated.’’
The Gudgeon Pro, which sells for $299, has been sold nationwide as well as to customers in Australia and Chile.
Having sold 125 of his design’s most recent version at Mystery Creek Fieldays trade event in June, as well as about four a week online, Patrick thought he’d try his luck down south.
His dad saw an advertisement for A& P show stalls about six weeks ago and suggested they take the Gudgeon Pro to Canterbury.
His mother, Angela, a teacher, assumed they had ‘‘missed the boat’’.
‘‘But we inquired and they said, you’re the kid off TV’,’’ she said.
The family of five drove for two days to be at the show. It was Michael’s first time off the farm in four years.
Clad in orange and black, Angela and daughter Victoria, 6, were helping Patrick sell his product.
‘‘People will come up to Patrick and ask, ‘Where’s Dad?’ But then they talk to the kid and find out he’s done it himself.’’
CLEVER CREATION: Patrick Roskam, inventor and designer of the 5-in-1 gate hanger which helps make accurate and straight holes, explains his invention to Federated Farmers national president William Rolleston.