Here are some answers to my most frequently asked questions:
What bulletproof rating is Rhino Hide? We have not yet formally tested Rhino Hide with an independent company to get our UL rating. We are working with Oregon Ballistic Laboratories in Salem Oregon to test the product for us. Our test plan has been developed and we will be testing 72 panels each with different thickness, blend, and ammunition. This is expensive so we are going to wait a bit until the investment funds are in place. From our own testing we are estimating the UL 752 rating to be better than UL752 - Level 8, for a 3.5” wall filled with 50% blended Rhino Hide. I will talk more about the blending options below.
What insulation value is Rhino Hide? This independent testing will also be done soon. Based on other, nearly identical materials we are expecting the R-value to be approximately 7 per inch of thickness. So a standard 3.5” wall would have an R value of about 24.
Can Rhino Hide be installed without special equipment? We will offer DIY kits so that anyone can install Rhino Hide. We will also offer free training videos on our website to make sure it’s done properly. Installing it yourself is as simple as drilling a 2” hole at the top of each wall section, inserting a weighted liner, inserting our patented funnel into the hole, mixing the Rhino Hide in a 5-gallon bucket with a paddle mixer, and then pouring the mixture into the wall.
Why do you add filler to Rhino Hide? Rhino Hide is fairly costly and to bring down the price we use a filler whenever possible. For thinner walls, or walls that must resist high powered ammunition we can install pure Rhino Hide. For thicker walls we can add more filler to the mix to reduce cost but still satisfy the bulletproof requirements.
Many schools are made from cinderblock. Isn’t that already bulletproof? Cinderblock is not bulletproof. It does very well when filled with concrete, but usually only exterior walls are filled with concrete and oftentimes not even those. Cinderblock without fill can only withstand 1 round from an AR15 before it crumbles. Our product was initially designed for interior walls as a way to turn each classroom into a shelter and protect against threats coming from the hallway. Rhino Hide can be filled into cinderblock walls, metal framed walls or even stud framed walls.
Why not just pour concrete in the wall or build the walls from concrete to begin with? Rhino Hide is about 1/5th the weight of concrete. If you pour concrete into a sheetrock wall the sheetrock will blow-out from the massive pressure. Building the walls from concrete to begin with is a good choice and would cost less but our market is focused on the 140,000 schools that already exist in the United States. Tearing down all those buildings and rebuilding them is not an option.
Can Rhino Hide be installed on second-floors? Rhino Hide is just slightly heavier than water. It is completely fine to install it on the second floor, in walls that have walls below them. In most cases it is also OK to install without supporting walls, but we recommend having an engineer buy-off on any unsupported second-floor installs.
How do you protect the internal components in a wall, from Rhino Hide? We use a special liner that is a lot like the produce bags you use at the grocery store. The liner solves many issues with Rhino Hide getting into places you don’t want it.
Can wires be added to walls after Rhino Hide has been installed? This should be avoided if at all possible. Always try to think ahead and add conduit if you expect to need to make future additions. That said, Rhino Hide can be cut with a skill saw, drilled or routered. It may be possible to router channels in the material to add wiring at a later time, but I have yet to try it. -stay tuned
What’s in it for the certified installers? Certified installers get a really good deal. First, they get a 30% discount on all Rhino Hide materials. We are planning to build a Certified Installer portal on our website. This will be a place where our installer network can go and update their info and have access to training materials and videos. This will also act as a way for Rhino Hide to provide our network with sales leads. Certified installers will also have access to purchase special installation equipment.
How much longer until you can start selling Rhino Hide? We have two main goals before we start selling. First, we need to be sure that all the patents are filed. Second, we need to have our independent certifications in place. There are some other smaller business development tasks such as building the website and moving into a building. All-in-all we expect to need another $150K and 4-6 months to be ready.
Why not just take away guns or arm teachers These are political talking points. They are not real solutions that we can all get behind. Don’t get me wrong – I have my opinions, you may even be able to guess what they are but solutions like these are only intended to split us up. I hear some very vial things on Facebook. I am accused of being an evil fear monger profiteering from tragedy. It all makes me sick. Am I a capitalist? – sure, but first and foremost, I am here to solve a problem. I don’t see this as being much different that developing seat belts, defibrillators, or bulletproof vests.
Kids rarely get shot through walls, why make them bulletproof? This product is intended to give kids and teachers a place to instantly shelter, right where they are at, while the police come in and subdue the criminal. The average shooting lasts around 12 minutes while the average response time is almost 20 minutes. A low caliber bullet can pass through 8 walls before it is stopped. Stray police bullets are just as dangerous. Newer schools can be built with concrete filled walls to add security but there are over 140,000 schools in the US that don’t have hardened walls. Our Niche is retrofitting those buildings at a cost that is much lower than remodeling.
How much will Rhino Hide cost? We are still negotiating prices, but it looks like Rhino Hide will cost between $25 and $50 per gallon depending on the blend. This makes it possible to retrofit a classroom for about $15,000 which is about half what our competitors in-class shelters cost and will shelter twice as many people. Kids don’t have to waste time moving to the shelter, they just stay in their seats.