Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it cost to enter?

For 2017, the fee has been waived and there is no expected cost to finalists.

Who is eligible?

Any individual over the age of 18 may enter. You must represent yourself (not a larger company) and have sole IP rights to your concept.

What kind of projects are being accepted?

Any idea that hasn't yet been patented (can have patent pending) whose expected MSRP falls between $50 and $500. Your idea/concept may already be in a “prototype” stage. If so, you may enter but be advised that your prototype may be tweaked and changed during the process, if chosen. Your idea/concept/prototype must be small enough to be captured on camera.

If I'm selected to participate, what will the series/process look like?

The ten concepts that are finalists will not compete to win, but will each succeed or fail based on their independent feasibility. Each season, all ten projects could potentially be funded if the prototypes can be made and are all deemed market-worthy and market-ready. Hosts and staff will help guide the ten entrants from concept to design to prototype. 

Do I need to have a patent pending to enter?

No. In fact, the hosts of the show are happy to help walk finalists through the patent process, and we do not expect entrants to have already started this. However, as long as the patent has not yet been awarded, we will accept entrants from any stage of the patent-seeking process.

If I make it to the crowdfunding state of the process, what happens?

During the last stages of the process, TinkerENG will help connect you with funding for your prototype, and sponsors of TinkerENG will offer supply and material services. 

If my project is chosen, do I need to be present for the video series or process?

You do not need to be present during the process. Depending on your location, we can interview and work with you via a Google Hangout for the video series. Our series will be shot mainly in NJ and in NY. If you are from these areas or surrounding areas, we will work on logistics with you.

Do I need to have a website?

No, but please detail any marketing plans you may have for your concept/idea within the application or with supporting collateral.

How do I determine MSRP?

If you have done some homework on your idea within the consumer goods marketplace, you may have a general idea of the value of your idea to the consumer. If you have not done this homework, we are happy to guide you in creating a price tag for your concept.

If you have a question that has not been addressed here, please contact us at

See our Terms & Conditions page for more information.