Chase Innovations is not the first company to design a fishing net with an integrated scale, but the start-up company does hope its product will be the first one to catch on. The Lochsa is almost identical to a conventional net except for the brightly-lit LCD display on its handle. At the push of a button, the net gives you the weight of whatever fish you just scooped up.

“You can now easily track the weights of your fish from the day and accurately determine your all-time records,” the company states on its Kickstarter page. “No more guessing which of your fish was bigger (not just longer) so that you will know where you caught your biggest fish and which fish stories to tell your friends!”

The idea of adding a scale to a fishing net has been kicked around for years. The advantages of such a device are plain enough: you immediately know what the fish weighs without stressing it further. This can be a big boon to competition anglers hunting for the heaviest fish, and eliminates much of the guesswork for casual anglers. The process of catch and release is made safer when anglers can tell the weight of a fish without ever having to take it out of a net.

The net was designed by three engineers: Michael Chase, Chadd Van Komen, and Edward Kim. All avid anglers, they had been nursing the idea of a better, sleeker net for several years before they produced their initial breadboard prototype. Now taking the form of a “field-tested product,” the Lochsa’s lightweight aluminum housing is strong enough to handle a number of environments while providing accurate, temperature-sensitive readings. The Lochsa comes in 15-inch and 18-inch configurations and runs off two AA batteries. What the company needs now is the funding to get the net into mass production.

“Going from prototype to mass production is a huge undertaking for any company,” Chase Innovations states on the product’s Kickstarter page. “Anytime you transition from prototype to mass production many issues will arise. We designed the Lochsa with mass production in mind and have already lined up all our suppliers, however we know there will be bumps in the road. Our excellent design should mitigate these risks and we are confident that we can overcome any and all manufacturing obstacles.”

The start-up company has set a crowdfunding goal of $25,000 to cover the initial expenses, and has under a month to meet that mark.

You can see the Lochsa in use below:

Image screenshot of video on kickstarter.com

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