V4 Product Design – Furniture
We are now embarking on the Product Design phase of the project. There are several ‘topics’ we are tackling and this one will be focused on Furniture design. We will share our thinking along the way and are open to your ideas and suggestions.
@v-varella has created a topic about Product Development in which he speaks of the core “values” that Precious Plastic products should hold. We should strive for Precious Products to:
1. Change the perception of recycled plastic to a valuable and versatile resource.
2. Engage with new audiences by building excitement around the material.
3. Produce with techniques that encourage local high quality output.
4. Embrace the unique qualities of the material.
5. Share accessible tools that enable the community to overcome challenges.
6. Explore the world of possibilities that the machines can offer.
7. Commit to circular economy principles and not contribute to other problems in the long term.
Plastic recycling is cool but if it is specifically about Furniture, FRP waste might be a goldmine.
FRP Scrap is usually huge windmill blades, they are big in size and you can easily cut and assemble chairs, furniture, table out of them.
We have those in huge quantities around India and they are usually free because companies cannot recycle them, I encourage you to try same
Hey @s2019, oh.. a large void in explanation too! haha
I’ve used barrel nuts that are commonly used in furniture. One 10mm hole allows the nut to slide into the piece which can then accept 6mm thread. I’ve used two in that case because the cavity was so large.
Yes, left is as extruded.
As for the process, I set the blade depth on the table saw to 10mm and made multiple cuts. The chisel was for fine finishing. Our in-house hand router has a set speed that just seems too high and melts the plastic, leaving a nasty finish.
@timslab , nice progress. Could you explain the right hand photo in image 1? How are the two rods anchored into the PP? That is a large void. Is the left image as extruded?
For cutting the slot, a low cost XY cross vise and an endmill or router bit in the drill press could make that easier than the chisel approach.
To finish that series I’d like to share some insights on the postproduction of the materials. First and foremost we try to reduce it to a minimum as despite a very pedantic extraction we produce micro plastic particles (more on that to follow soon). Ideas on that so far is to use clean tools and a separate extraction for working with plastic in order to remelt the chips.
PP and HDPE work well with almost any tool and edges can be easily cleaned by shaving them with a knife. PS however is a bit more demanding. A good result was to use lowest speeds possible and cooling where possible, e.g. with a water cooled metal chop saw or spiral milling bits with compressed air cooling. In general metal tools are the right choice here, e.g. spiral drill bit instead of forstner bit.
In general I found it handy to heat up the surface to smoothen it and to get rid of discolorations from the mold.
As mentioned before by @michael95 we dug a bit deeper into the topic of joinery the last weeks at PPHQ. @s2019, strength testing is definitely on our agenda to generate a reliable database for future projects. Up until now, we focused on an experimental approach, as well because I’m not specifically proficient in scientific testing. So in case you have any suggestions for setup and method let me know and I’ll conduct some tests on our prototypes.
Anyways I’d like to share some of the approaches that seem promising to you, see photos attached from left to right:
works pretty well with the HDPE sheet used here, as it provides enough flexibility to get a tight pressure fit without cracking. It’s pretty important to make a small notch on the tenon’s side to prevent it from slipping through the hole and relieving the pressure. Besides that a straight forward process with jigsaw and chisel. The esthetic advantages are pretty obvious, but as well in terms of strength it’s convincing (again, quantitive data is about to follow).
if you could manage making a joinery enabling cubes and rectangular objects; enough to make shelfs and an extendable work – bench (see beam addons mentioned in the ‘grid beam’ sections), we’d be definitely interested, in hope the v3 & v4 beams remain re-usable for something else. i’d order the first batch of 100 Kg right away – but please not for 10000 Euro again 😉
actually hard to say not knowing the application and durability of the beams. learning a little from the past (re/up-cycle, broken joinery) shrink or metal sleeves leave the support/majority material at least intact and can be easily fixed; at least easier than a worn out joint like this which doesn’t look look well under long stress 🙂
same as in the ‘bricks’ topic, would be great if you add at least some information about scope and context as well what support for the ideas is being involved. having ideas isn’t the problem. you need folks being able to get through the entire process; I know just 1 or 2 you could relate to PP. There hasn’t been a single success story in this regards, fully documented, paper work, networking, licensing, certification, etc… nor any comment what happens to the content here posted. if it just ends up in static.v4.pp.dh.nl.pay.com it basically worth little to nothing. building up a shop is already a huge invest, keep one alive and sustainable (patreon and donations isn’t an option) is a complete new whole level and start throwing money at the complete product development and production cycle, yeah well … there are more promising things; til today we were more pumping $$ into PP than we actually got something out nor made a real next move … far from that! in fact, one has to be kinda rich to get over 6-12 months hard core work, unpaid. plastic business isn’t exactly profitable; that’s a fact known in the industry.
i am really eager to know whether v4 is just like v3, a catalog of process documentation and immature machines and now a few more ‘ideas’ which have to be debugged and fixed on the community shoulders. if you ever worked in a professional startup/production under high pressure, you may understand. Having bots searching the entire internet around PP, there is little to no evidence that anything got ever out of the bazar; to local communities at best, more likely at -3 Euro the hour …
so please, enlighten us what v4 product design actually means to you, and what the outcome will be for the PP universe.
there are protocols, definitions as well standards to drive crowd based projects; I ‘d like to see at least some of these manifested & respected.
thanks in advance and – keep up the good work –
for objects not being moved around a lot like shelfs that could do, assuming little to no dynamic forces. i could use a sh** load of these. if you can make them well interlocking (still, metal wins here), i would be also happy to build a shop table from that beams. wood or metal beams are stupid expensive, needs easily 10 m .. why they are so ugly btw… ?
here is an excellent welder at work; possibly also a good way to start thinking to recycle cans.
i’d try simulating dynamic forces attacking the weak parts over a longer time; just to see how long this is holding up; even better chairs from wood don’t last very well; in case of a chair just keep smashing one leg on the floor … honestly; i’d skip all the attempts to make joinery from plastic; to me metal sleeves are still the best; a little more difficult to TIG weld tubing together but everyone will enjoy the outcome. there is so much stuff going to the trash because of broken plastic joinery …
i know from a popular chair maker that there are not many designs passing the needed reviews; the more critical eye is going on the joinery indeed. i guess bolts won’t do but possibly metal sleeves .. having a look around you (mcdonals, petrol stations, rest stations) gives you a good idea what sold. on the other hand, one has to be careful to copy proven designs; there is often IP involved and it can bite you back even after many years.
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