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Local Inventor Featured On History Channel For Thinking ‘Outside The Box’

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WESTLAND (WWJ) - It’s not every day someone invents something so unique that it captures the attention of a national network — but a Westland man has done just that and he’s making his History Channel debut Friday night on a new show.

WWJ’s Kathryn Larson caught up with Chris Badynee, who talked about filming the new show “Invention USA” and debuting his “box bass.”

“This very cardboard box, they took it into this million dollar acoustical engineering laboratory with all these huge measurement things and big screens and everything. Then they had a standard wood upright base. They did tests to match them and the results are astounding and entertaining,” he said.

Badynee, an amateur musician, created a nearly perfect electrical bass but the discovery came about following a string of bad luck back in 2005. Badynee said he always wanted to buy a bass but every time he came close, something would set him back.

“Every time I get $800 or $1,000 to buy an upright bass, we’d have to replace the refrigerator or new tires on the car, the kids needed braces, new stove, new washer and dryer, but this time, the bathroom caught fire, the space heater, you know, it was cold.”

After the bathroom fire, a new cabinet had to be built, and the box that it came in was the inspiration for some beautiful music.

Badynee, his uncle Dave Eden (a former prototype guy for Ford Motor Co.) and some other family members made this creation a family affair — and with the help of weed-wacker twine and some nuts and bolts, the enterprise began. So how did this hundred-dollar instrument get noticed?

“What do you do in 2006 when you have something that you want to show the world? You make a video and you put it online. YouTube was brand new, so I posted it on YouTube. And then my video was actually, they put it on the front page of YouTube,” Badynee said.

Now, the inventor sells the Bogden model, named after his dad who was a former Detroit firefighter, to thousands across the globe.

Badynee said the secret to the cardboard bass sound is simple: Unlike in wood, the air really can flow.  And he said this discovery is one this new History Channel series will highlight.

“The show is really about, it’s not showcasing the box bass. The show is about, ‘You can do this too’ type inventors, and inventors and inventions from regular plain old people that would pretty much affect the whole world.”

“Invention USA” will air Friday Dec. 9 at 10:30 p.m., Saturday Dec. 10 at 2:30 a.m. and Sunday Dec. 11 at 1 p.m.

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