The Un-p3 Project Update

brian- ling-un-p3-project
It has been a good number of months since the I’ve last updated my readers on the status of this project. Firstly though I like to apologize to a few of this project’s supporters for this delay but I have not been idle and was working on it during my spare time. I really was waiting for this time to finally give you an update.
Most of you astute readers would have already noticed that The Un-p3 Project is currently being exhibited at the Dandelion Industrial Design Exhibition. Unfortunately due to the entry criteria, that exhibition is really only for “show”. Therefore I thought to continue and expand upon the “tell” part here at Design Sojourn. This will be a great opportunity for you to ask any additional questions or make comments of any kind. Also I get a chance to explain how I went from the Haptic concept, and came up with the Wave one.
un-p3-project-haptic-concept
The Un-p3 Haptic concept: For more information see links below
If you missed the original conceptual thinking of this project that I am self-developing in the role of a design producer do take a look at Part 1 and Part 2 first for some background information, especially on the above Haptic concept.
I have to admit that it has been difficult realizing this project and even at this stage we are not totally done. After speaking to more designers about the Haptic Concept, the deeper complexities of my objective of this product’s creation process became more evident. So I wondered, perhaps unsatisfied with the current use of wood, that perhaps I should open my thoughts to consider other forms of craft manufacturing type techniques? But there is this problem going the craft route.
You see the when we look at craft vs manufacturing scale below they are actually polar opposites of each other:
craft-vs-manufacturing
The Haptic concept tends to fall on the more craft end of things, and I would rate the Wave concept as in between the two.
Craft manufacturing tends to focus on one off products or small production runs often hand made, but as a result often suffers from tolerencing and perhaps reliability issues. Mass manufacturing strives on standardization and volume, thus the products will have good fit but you need to sell in the numbers. As the project’s experiment was about exploring the use of craft based manufacturing juxtaposed with an electronic product, we need both small volumes, attention to detail, but still have good part fit.
One day while speaking to some friends working on their design project, I had a “euraka” moment. Why not use a Rapid prototype machine? Not only does it allow me some freedom in design (well almost, the RP machine still has restrictions) but it also allows fairly good tolerancing and part fit that is perfect for building electronic products.
So as I got started and studied the creation process via the Rapid Prototyping Machine, I decided very quickly that I had to designed this concept so that it would be difficult to be reproduced via mass-manufacturing. Undercuts, flat edges, thin walls, narrow gaps, living hinges and surface texture were tricks that came into play below.
un-p3-project-wave-concept
The Un-p3 Project: Wave Concept
So there you go, the Wave concept. I have to say though it was a very interesting experience as after more than 10 years working on Industrial Design programs, certain manufacturing “givens” like part line placement or designing for draft have been ingrained in my creative creation process. In creating this Wave concept, it required me to spend a few days re-thinking and re-framing what I know about design for manufacturing before I could even set my mind free. I hope you enjoy reading about this project as much as I did creating it.
So if you had a choice on which direction would appeal to you, if I made a limited edition run of 20 pieces which would it be? Perhaps I may do a 10-10 split? Regardless please do have your say and I look forward to all your comments.

11 Comments
  • 107

    November 26, 2007 at 12:50 am Reply

    wave concept. yes indeed it’s cool concept.
    Hope to see your final touch design.
    I just wonder what material & finihing will be apply on it..Can’t wait to look for it.

  • fizhcake

    November 26, 2007 at 7:26 pm Reply

    *drool*

  • DT

    November 27, 2007 at 12:09 pm Reply

    Hi 107, thanks for your comments. I was thinking of leaving the natural finish of the rapid prototyping material with all its very fine horizontal lines as seen in the close up image above. What do you think?

    Hi fizhcake, LOL!

  • drew kora

    November 29, 2007 at 7:44 pm Reply

    “Cool soap”
    That’s what my wife said as she looked at my computer screen and saw your new wave mp3 player. Haha! Admittedly, it does resemble a bar of soap from a distance. Once I explained to her what it was, though, she totally dug it. That being said, they are both really awesome.
    The wave mp3 player is very interesting…especially when you look closely at the slightly ragged edges and lines left by the RP machine. I love that look and feel. Could you post up some more photos of it from different angles and next to other objects for size comparison. I think the wavy buttons are a very novel approach, too. The white plastic and curvy shape makes it look like some device from the movie Minority Report quality to it.
    I personally still prefer the haptic concept myself, but that could be because I’ve had the wooded version ingrained (no pun intended) in me since you started this project. But I’m nuts about the wood grain and the laser cut circles, simply gorgeous. It’s unquestionable “craft” and unlike anything else I’ve seen. I admit, much of my preference here comes down to my style and taste, and that simple wooden box is just too good to be true.
    So if I had to choose one, the wooden model would be it. So do a split production run. Good work DT.

  • Timbo

    December 6, 2007 at 8:37 pm Reply

    Hi DT,
    I would go for the Haptic concept if you too it a bit further. what i mean by this is could the Haptic model be a range of colours. then varnihed like a mahogany table of sorts. It would take away the tactile feel of the would but it would make the piece lean toward an electronic furniture. It would also link it to music. Look at well made guitars which are like your concept made of wood and finished off in a color and varnish. so if you think of it the piece would become an mp3 player that would have been made in a pre-electronic era, a varnished wooden victorian mp3 maybe haha.
    I do think as it stands the wave is great. what i like is the fact it looks like you can drop it and bounce it off wall all day long and it would still work. unlike the ipod haha
    timbo out. what says you?

  • 107

    December 9, 2007 at 2:18 am Reply

    ok. if you want to keep the original natural finish of the rapid prototyping material -fine horizontal lines, that is fine.
    Do you plan to add up some eye catching elements- lighting artworks or add up some glossy parts or wana make softtouch rubber feelings?
    i think if only keep the original fine horizontal lines is not enough- just feel the design is still half bake- not yet complete.

  • DT

    January 23, 2008 at 6:31 pm Reply

    Hi Timbo,
    So sorry for the late reply. Your suggestion for the Haptic concept is damn good, thanks a lot and you’ll get a discount if you do but one! Electronic furniture is a great way to look at it for sure.
    Hi 107,
    You are right, that is the problem with the materials, its finish is not the best. Perhaps I might need to use a different process, but I will definitely try again. I will still be refining and do stay tuned for further updates!

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  • ken

    February 5, 2010 at 2:34 pm Reply

    Hi there,was wondering which RP process did you used for your prototypes and is it convenient to reveal how much were you charge for that?

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