Pop the champagne! Hang the banners! Turn the music to 11! …Gain an ASBO?
This is a celebratory post for many reasons;
1. It’s Saturday
2. The blog has just cracked 2,000 views!
3. The final Kronospan product has been handed in.
Today’s inane ravings come in the form of word(s) on prototyping.
To be honest, I’d never really done prototyping before the Kronospan project. Yes I’d made things, but I only ever made 1 or 2 of these things…And they generally didn’t change much inbetween.
However over the last 5? Weeks – The Kronospan prototype has seen more change than a coalition government healthcare policy. I’m very much a huge fan of Computer Aided Design – Which is considered prototyping – But with something with very specific load requirement needs it becomes quite important to see how it behaves physically; only then will you be properly prototyping.
Prototyping does not have to be incredibly detailed to see where a potential product could potentially meet problems. In true art attack style; here are a few I did earlier
When you take a model that is just on paper (or a screen) and take it into the real world you see things that you might never see before, like manufacturing difficulties or, in my case, my desks amazing capability to fall on it’s face at the slightest breeze like me after 10 too many drinks.
In total I think I ended up with around 10 of these smaller “Sketch” prototypes before I could settle on a more stable form that probably wouldn’t kill or maim it’s users. After this stage I reverted back to computer aided design to generate an aesthetic model to see what it would look like in its new guise;
Now I had to construct a more precise prototype to load/tip test this model; So I decided as I’d already created a 3d model that I could use the same method used in the Radio Project to create an exact prototype using the laser cutter (what a tool!).
Once this prototype was fully assembled it was clear that yet again the design had been improved upon but however still had teething problems…Enough to land a healthy lawsuit. Over the next few days I altered leg pitch, position, size, smell – you name it to see if the two legs could support (abuse of) the surface without becoming intrusive to the user.
Short answer? No.
Long answer? Shit no.
In the end the design necessitated the addition of 2 additional legs to make the structure safe enough to a reasonable standard – This of course created “dead space” under the table which then became useless to the user, which I chose to turn into “A jazzy wee storage space” – Because lets be honest, everyone loves a hidey-hole for their stuff.
So another prototype is born – This time nothing short of the end of the world will cause this desk to topple, however the additional legs has became intrusive into the user’s floor space on the inner part of the circle. At this point I chopped off the back supports from the new added legs as this had not been a “danger zone” previously, which then free’d up the valuable floor real-estate to make the space useable again.
Quite satisfied that the design was user friendly and wasnt going to go all 15th century on anyone’s ass a more resolved MDF prototype could be constructed.
You like air fix? You would love this
The prototype was constructed from laser cut sections of 2mm or 4mm thick MDF that were then glued together to give the desired thickness. Once the first protoype had been constructed and I was happy with it, the next 3 could be built as exact replica’s.
I started getting goosebumps around the point I first placed all 4 of them together – I think I had realised that for a rare occasion I’d reached a truly purposeful, well executed design; I’ll let the pictures do the talking.
So there was nothing left to do but apply a finish to the model to present. I decided that the model would look best in either what I like to call “Product design White” Or “Product design grey”. I opted for the white because I so happened to have a little left from previous venture’s.
I’m not going to bore you with the details but yet again let the pictures talk for themselves.
Overall I’m really happy with how it turned out – If I had more time I think I could have done a few things better but I guess that is the very nature of such an iterative process in such a tight timescale.
Thanks for reading! Here’s to another 2,000!