Hunter Morera’s ‘Cinch Wrench’ earns spot on TV show
By Kyle LoJacono
LAND O’ LAKES — People from across the country showed up for a chance to be a part of the second season of the Discovery network’s show “Pitchmen,” but one local kid stood out.
“One thing they told me was talk is cheap, but you came and did it,” said Hunter Morera, of Land O’ Lakes, about what the competition’s judges thought of his invention.
Hunter said he was a fan of the first season and taped each episode.
Hunter did not hear about the “Pitchmen” search himself, but his mother, Susan, heard about it on the radio and told Hunter to register. Susan lived in Lutz for 37 years before moving to Land O’ Lakes. She’s the owner of Susan’s Mane Tamers, a hair salon in Lutz.
In the first season of “Pitchmen,” Anthony Sullivan and the late Billy Mays, two of the most famous pitchmen in history, showed audiences how they put their sales pitches together to sell products to America. They searched for inventors whose products had great potential.
Hunter’s invention is called the “Cinch Wrench,” which is multiple wrenches that fold down to fit in the palm of a hand together like a pocket knife would.
“I came up with the idea a couple weeks before I heard about the competition,” Hunter said. “My dad and I were working in the front yard with a tree trimmer with a bolt that needed tightening. So I ran and got a couple of wrenches and of course none of them were the right size.
“I told him I wanted make something so I don’t have to run and find wrenches because I know I’m not the only one who has this problem.”
Hunter and his father, Eddie, spent about five hours putting the invention together.
Anyone can come up with a product, but it takes more than just a good idea to win the competition.
“It’s about the people behind the products, not just the products,” said Anthony Sullivan, “Pitchmen” host.
Hunter took Sullivan’s advice to heart, drawing inspiration for his sales pitch from his reason for inventing the Cinch Wrench. He told the judges that anyone who works with tools could benefit from using his device.
“I thought it had broad appeal because a normal person with tools could use it or a professional contractor could, too. I also told them it was universal because it could be manufactured with metric or American sizes of wrenches…I had to sell it to them and now they’ll sell it to America.”
The initial search for inventors took place Nov. 4 at the Ritz in Ybor, where 176 inventors came to make their pitch. Of those, 11 were chosen to give their sales pitch live on the radio via the MJ Morning Show on 93.3 FLZ. Of those, Hunter was the only teenager.
“They said that before me, the youngest person they had worked with was 17,” said Hunter, who turned 16 on Nov. 14. “Being one of the winners is great. I have the audio on tape of my pitch on the radio that I’ll keep.”
Hunter, who attends Sunlake High, had to miss school on Nov. 4 to be part of the search. He got an interesting note explaining the absence to his teachers.
“Anthony Sullivan and MJ signed a note written by my mother to take to school to prove why I missed school,” Hunter said. “My science teacher couldn’t believe it. She made everyone be quiet and we talked about it for the first 10 minutes of class on (Nov. 5).”
Even though he just won a national competition, Hunter has not gotten a swelled head. One day after being one of the six winners, he was at the Museum of Science and Industry volunteering as he has each Saturday for the last two years. Hunter works different educational stations at MOSI, such as the butterfly garden, “Kids in Charge!” and the earthquake.
Hunter taped the first season of “Pitchmen” on TV, but he said he would probably buy the second season when it becomes available.
“I’ve got to get this one,” he said.