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Solid Solutions Internal SOLIDWORKS Modelling Challenge

Wednesday April 6, 2016 at 9:30am

How would you design a low cost, easily manufacturable stand for your iPhone that allows it to be inclined on your desk? There are plenty of phone stands currently on the market but we were looking for a fresh idea, suitable for manufacture on our 3D printer. The following challenge was given to our Technical team here at Solid Solutions.

Brief: To design an innovative phone stand suitable for 3D printing

Constraints (must haves):

  •  Stable on a flat surface.
  • Angled at 30 degrees to vertical plane
  • Easily manufacturable using our 3D printer with minimum print time – ideally a few minutes
  • Minimum material usage to reduce cost
  • Be a part or an assembly
  • Attractive / novel design

 Additional criteria (Extras):

  • Variable angle to the vertical plane
  • Can support the phone in landscape or portrait orientation
  • Capable of being printed in a batch – i.e. multiple parts being nested in some way to speed up printing.

There were a variety of interesting concepts, with a noticeable difference between the engineers and the product designers!

Below are the entries:

After receiving the concepts we all voted for the best design:

  • 1st Place: DESIGN C – Tim Iland
  • 2nd Place: DESIGN D – Joe Baxter
  • 3rd Place: DESIGN A – Martin MacDonald

We printed 1st and 2nd place to see if they functioned as phone stand and tested them against the design criteria.

Design C - Tim Iland

 

Stable on a flat surface Yes, however slides along table when pushed, would require strip of rubber to keep still 
Angled at 30 degrees to vertical plane Yes
Easily manufacturable using our 3D printer with minimum print time – ideally a few minutes Yes
Minimum material usage to reduce cost Too little material used, structure too weak
Can be a part or an assy Assembly
Attractive / novel design Yes
Variable angle to the vertical plane Yes
Can support the phone in landscape or portrait orientation Can support landscape, phone too heavy to be supported portrait, model would need to be larger and parts thicker
Capable of being printed in a batch – i.e. multiple parts being nested in some way to speed up printing Yes
                                   

Design D – Joe Baxter

 

Stable on a flat surface Yes, however slides along table when pushed, would require strip of rubber to keep still 
Angled at 30 degrees to vertical plane Yes
Easily manufacturable using our 3D printer with minimum print time – ideally a few minutes Yes
Minimum material usage to reduce cost Yes
Can be a part or an assy Part
Attractive / novel design Yes, Credit Card Sized
Variable angle to the vertical plane Yes
Can support the phone in landscape or portrait orientation Yes
Capable of being printed in a batch – i.e. multiple parts being nested in some way to speed up printing Yes
                                   

Tim VS Joe:

Tim’s design was versatile as its use was not limited to just iPhones, however, it needed to be slightly larger and stronger to support the phone in the portrait orientation.

Joes design fitted nicely into the wallet and held the phone in both orientations but was limited to being used with iPhones due to its specific slot sizes.

Using the 3D printer to bring the concepts to life highlighted improvements that could be made to each of the designs. This challenge demonstrated to us just how valuable rapid prototyping can be in testing and developing your concept designs.

Congratulations to the winner Tim Iland on his innovative concept design!

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