Asteroid Belt Company started off and as of today is just one person – - me. I’ve always had a fascination with title belts every since watching wrestling at the age of 8 years old at my grandma’s house. She had the USA network and would get the old WWF (at that time) studio show where they’d be in a studio talking, then cut to matches on the screen. Living in small town Iowa, we finally got cable ourselves, but to my dismay, we didn’t get USA. My pout soon turned to smile once I found out that we got NWA on Saturday nights on TBS!
Wrestling was all I could ever think about as a kid and even still to this day. People back then only knew “Hulk” and that was about it. I could tell them about everyone as I soaked up info from magazines and the TV like a sponge. Many of the kids my age didn’t care about it, it was “fake.” To me, it was my escape from reality. From a “phantom” fed with my best friend Kyle, always trying to take down my 2 brothers who were bigger than us to wrestling my GI Joes and M.U.S.C.L.E. figures. I first built a ring out of an old cracker box with 4 Popsicle sticks glued to each corner for ring posts and tied string for the ropes…that didn’t work so well. For one of my birthdays, my uncle made me a “real” ring. It was a platform made out of plywood, had dowels for posts which I could run rubber bands around for ropes. The canvas was a baby blue felt with “NWA” painted in the center out of glitter paint. I was in heaven.
I grew out of wrestling with figures and such, but my love for wrestling never died. It hit low spots now and then when it couldn’t keep my attention. I did the IWA play-by-mail thing up thru high school and was hooked, even though it kept sucking my money away. A couple years after school, around the height of the Monday Night Wars, I was at an all-time high on wrestling. A friend of mine at work gave me an old PWI that had an ad in it for “Champions of the Galaxy” (COTG for short) by Filsinger Games. I’ve seen these ads years before, but always thought it wasn’t for me. So I ordered and once it arrived, I was hooked. Here was a game that was set 100 years into the future. It was Star Wars meets the WWE. It had aliens, humanoids, half animal-half humans (animen) and guys called the Gladiators that looked like the Road Warriors from the future. Each edition came with 10 cards or so. They upgraded, downgraded, retired guys, etc and each pack represented 1 year in game time. You could create your own federation, you played the promoter. As a promoter, you set up the matches, controlled what happened and it all revolved around how far you wanted to take your imagination…perfect for me as I thought imagination was more important than knowledge any day! To this day (2012) Champions of the Galaxy is still putting out game releases each year and is up to 2127!
I tell this story because it leads me to one of the earlier times I created belts. I’ve always had a fascination with title belts…it was the ultimate symbol in wrestling and I thought everything needed a belt to showcase, not a trophy or medal. In my early childhood that I spoke of with my friend Kyle, we’d create all sorts of belts. My aunt worked at some electrical place and would bring me home this teal blue foil strips about 4″ wide and at various lengths with a paper to protect the adhesive. We’d find cardboard or yellow construction paper and dream up fictitious or even current belts of the times and make them. Back then for some reason, I was obsessed with the NWA TV title. Even if it wasn’t the top title, the design some how appealed to me the most and is still one of my all-time favorite belts, seconded by the classic WWF Intercontinental title.
Back to the COTG stuff. So people eventually began corresponding via snail mail and then the internet hit. We found people that lived in a proximity that we could gather for conventions. Our first chance to break away from solo play and have tournaments against other people! I was an hour away from Omaha, would pick up fellow player Don Jones and head to Scott Pokett’s house in Omaha – - GalactiCorn was born! It was a play on the name of the COTG official convention GalactiCon. Markus Vander Zanden drove all the way down from Wisconsin to join us!
This is where I decided we needed a prize and what better prize than a belt! I had no resources back then, so I went to the trusty old cardboard sheet fit to the length of a belt, painted it silver and black (as seen in the photo above) and the King of the Corn title was born! As people came and went, the convention evolved. We eventually added a Hardcorn (Hardcore) tournament with the winner gaining that title (saw blade one above). I began making KOTC belts annually, with the winner getting to take one home. The original KOTC belt moved to the Fed Champion, a round robin based on points. I moved away from cardboard when I realized I could paint on some reflective gold cardstock and attach it to a vinyl strap.
Eventually I started up a similar convention in Iowa called I-CON…I found out about this thin brass metal to emboss designs on and attach it to the vinyl strap. I-CON needed a title belt, so I made one. Someone told me I had a knack for designing belts and should offer up my services. I figured “what the heck,” and began to shill by belts to the public via messageboards and word-of-mouth. I decided that a belt maker needed a name. Since I play a game that involves the space age of the future, it hit me to call this thing “Asteroid Belt Company,” a play on asteroid belts. I whipped up a website and waited. Things began to trickle in, then I hit a spot where I’d be booming…it was off and on. People of the COTG gaming community began ordering belts, then out of the blue people would begin to order them for fantasy football leagues and beer pong events.
This, along with COTG is my top hobby. It’s exciting and I get to use my creativity along with the customers’ creativity and input as well. One day I hope to expand and make belt making a full time job…I take that back, a full time hobby! Then again, I used to dream of wanting to become a pro wrestler too…a guy can still dream, can’t he?
Thank you for spending your time and reading how Asteroid Belt Company came about. A customer or not, I appreciate your time and hope to work with you in the future or again if you’re already a customer!
Done for Jake and the Beer League Football. The ladies and the flowing can of Brewz beer. The fantastic line of fantasy football belts continue...thanks Jake and I think I'm starting to believe the whole "leader in fantasy belts" idea more and more for the Asteroid Belt Company and our custom title belts.
Want a nice trophy belt for any occasion, but don’t want to spend the big bucks on one? Asteroid Belts is your answer to a low-cost, high quality championship for any occasion. Fantasy Football leagues, backyard wrestling federations, office awards, Filsinger Games: Champions of the Galaxy or Legends of Wrestling feds…these are to just name a few. Whatever the occasion, we can make it happen!
Our belt plates are hand crafted out of brass sheet metal with your design and riveted to a black vinyl strap with a velcro enclosure to ensure easy on/off fastening. Asteroid Belt side plates come in many ways. The picture above has it to where names can be added for each winner every year or you can have 2 plates (one on each side) with whatever design you’d like.
Chi Delta Beta fraternity Beer Pong belts. A set of tag titles (only one shown), a CDB frat heavyweight title and a "Hardkor" Beer Pong singles title.
A drawing is made up of your face plate and shown to you for approval. Once approval is given by YOU, the process will be started and your belt will be on its way for production. Production is 2-3 weeks per belt requested (time may vary due to work load). Full payment of $40 (includes US shipping) is due after approval of the sketch is made. Orders outside the US please inquire for shipping costs as they may be a bit more.
And for now, a little history of Asteroid Belt Company:
Asteroid Belt Company first burst onto the scene when Champions of the Galaxy/Filsinger Games conventions popped up in 2000 in the midwest. The first belts were made from vinyl strap and reflective gold cardstock painted with designs. While they were ok for fun, there was still much room for improvement.
In 2010, a new metal embossing procedure gave way to the old methods, and the first ever metal plate design was born. It was debuted at the first-ever Filsinger Games fan convention, I-CON (Iowa Con).
ABC isn’t so much of a business as it is a love for giving the proper events a real prize to battle over or a personable item for someone that just wants one for whatever the reason. If you’d like to order one or more of these pieces of awesomeness, please visit the ordering page or email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Asteroid Belts… “The Trophy of the Future has Arrived!”
“Totally love the belt. I told my buddy about it and he is thinking of another Rock Paper Scissors belt or one for Four Square for the school kids we mentor. It sits above my desk as I work, giving me inspiration as I write!” - Shane, “Roshambeau” film director
“I got the belt on Saturday…looks great! Thank you so much. Had some friends stay over my house last night and they loved it too. Awesome job as always!” – Todd, Outlaw Football League
“The belt came today and it’s FANTASTIC. I love it! You did a really great job. I can’t wait for the GalactiCal folks to see it. I hope to be able to film the promo this weekend and will let you know the moment it done! Again, really awesome!” -Grant, first-ever purchase for the ABC.
“Eric you rock….. came out great! Cant wait to give your belt to the champ on Saturday night, all these guys are excited to see it!” – Michael, ECFF League