UPDATE: We’re launching this as a Kickstarter Project on 9/10/12 under a company called Draft.
I love the idea of whiteboards but their aesthetic has much to be desired. When we moved into our new office I didn’t want to wrap our conference room with hideous whiteboard paint. Whitewalls are for doctors offices, I wanted something warmer and inviting that encouraged collaboration. After a bit of searching I found Solutions MB offered a transparent whiteboard “repair” coating with the oh so memorable name of MB4000W. After a few emails with the creator of MB4000W, I felt this product could be my alternative to a whiteboard.
For the “canvas” I wanted a natural wood look. Pine is cheap, it warps and is too soft of a surface. Oak is great, but too expensive. I settled on bamboo flooring for it’s hardness, look and added benefit of being a green product. The tongue and groove flooring provided a nice tight fit to avoid any gaps between the wood panels.
Once the flooring was glued to a backplate for hanging I sanded down the flooring and applied polyurethane to seal the surface. After 48 hours I applied the MB4000W using a ultra-smooth paint roller. I recommend pouring the MB4000W directly on the surface while using the roller to thin it. Be careful not to roll it too thin. Keep it thick and as line-free as possible.
The boards are safe to touch after a few hours, but you really want to give them 5 days or more to fully cure before use. I still want to experiment with some of the other products on the market, including the new clear IdeaPaint.
I received a few comments about the boards being hard to erase. That really just depends on the applicator you use. As I said, the roller works best. I’m working with a few people on productizing this concept and I’ll have updates on my Twitter feed at @gmorris. Here is an example of how it works. You be the judge.