Serial entrepreneur and avid competitive tennis player, Dr. Rahul Anand (he’s an anesthesiologist), was annoyed when he saw college and pro tennis players throwing sweat laden towels on the court after wiping off. Initially, he had hoped this was just a rare occasion, but it continued to happen. Dr. Anand even contacted the players and/or their management teams to make them aware of the hygiene problem this towel discarding was causing. Still, no change. Exasperated, Dr. Anand decided to take this problem on. This is where FUSE comes in.
Armed with the problem Dr. Anand was trying to fix, FUSE got to work. FUSE retraced the research, and for sure, this problem is a new animal. Not that it’s rare, just that its not been recognized. Lots of products start this way, we as humans adapt to situations. Look at what TESLA is trying to do with the removal of stalks.
After numerous concepts and a couple of full scale prototypes. A tight production budget started to provide clarity. Our team and Dr. Anand settled on the Rocket concept. Initially the Rocket was a single part roto-molded creature. It would hold towels, warm-up clothing, balls, hydration and personal items (phones, keys , wallets, etc.).
While initially designed for tennis, our team imagines the pod being valuable in multiple venues. The Sport Pod is at home pool side, beach side, in the gym and in the world of hospitality. With available accessory trays, the Anand Sport Pod is the perfect guest at your next barbecue.
In order to ship around the country, the world, and not ship air (or cost more than the product), we worked with the molder to make the the legs snap on. It fits into a FEDEX and UPS friendly box and sets up in minutes with no tools.
When they go low, we go high.
The Ariel chair is an update to the Crane chair. This new version adds a visually thicker mold-able cellular structure that conforms to the users’ body.
The Ariel Chair features that same elastomer powered lift mechanism that allows users to set up standing desks and sit only when needed. Users can sit and lean against the Ariel with its easily locked casters. Ariel’s more minimal i-Back encourages active postures.
Complex only 3D printable structures are super intriguing, but really hard to make. At the moment, 3D printing while compellin,g is unbelievably slow compared to modern injection molding. This design creates a thermally neutral cellular surface that is cleanable and most importantly, mold-able.
Athletic Trainer Taylor Peasha and professional Deep Sea Diver Steven Macdonald came to FUSE for help designing a super versatile training aid. Combined with some simple exercises and stretches, the medium density elastomeric ball provides just the right amount of point load to massage knotted muscles and compressed nerves.
On the engineering front, the big innovation is we use a single injection molded part that is simply flipped over to hold the strap securely. This part features a snap finger that locks to itself.
The OTTOLOCK has been a break away success for OTTO, but the company was looking for a more stable mount for their coiled genius. OTTO came to FUSE with a physical model that was pretty close and FUSE worked with OTTO to refine their idea and prototype the refined design.
FUSE refined and simplified the design to separate the mounting to the bike function and the securing of the lock to the mount function.
The ABOM Heet is the newest snow sports goggle from ABOM Labs. The Heet is incorporates the latest fog eviscerating technology from ABOM. A built in moisture sensor auto magically eliminates the fog creating condensate from inside the goggle. The Heet is sleeker and offers a better fit for both men and women. The tighter chassis also fits most snowmobiling helmets so those riders can enjoy a clear, fog free ride as well.
Slabtown In Stumptown
A very clever guy came to FUSE with an idea. A better way to set up a grid of rebar that floats within a slab of concrete. This wasn’t a totally new idea, but Kerry, the guy, had a host of improvements he wanted to add and he had a plan to make these really sell. These concrete chairs turn the painful time eating chore of setting up a grid of rebar into literally a snap. The rebar just pops into place at just the right height.Our job was to make them super strong and super cool. We made them feel like the super utilitarian future by instituting this octogonal theme throughout the structure. The octogonal base not only provided visual branding but also helped with keeping the rebar layouts in the field straight. FUSE designed all 27 variations that accomodate different sized bar and different heights. FUSE also redesigned the BIP logo along the way.
Sitting Is The New Smoking
This project was born within FUSE during the time when became widely recognized that standing was better than sitting. This period saw the advent of work surfaces that raised and lowered. These were expensive desks and the other thing is it’s hard to love a desk or at least want to spend big money on a desk. We know you can make a desk from an inexpensive door and sawhorses and most importantly you can put the desk up high to support standing. What is needed is a chair that can support this posture. Even better would be a chair that can go from traditional task height to stool height, maybe even allowing a worker to perch or lean against that chair. Easily done with locking a few casters!
Also, for the facilities managers who must purchase chairs for an organization the Crane chair supports all the work surface heights a facility may have.
We submitted this design to premiere office seating manufacturer Herman Miller (HM) and they picked up on it, flew our principal to HQ and launched a project to build a prototype. The project hit a snag when the HM design manager went on maternity leave but this led to our participation in multiple projects at HM.
When we built Orp, the super smal really cool bike horn/ bike light, we built it to be Remote Ready. Meaning: make a small wired switch that cold be placed under thumb that could go wherever the rider wanted. This simple product makes the Orp experience that much better as you never need to lift a hand to actuate either of Orp’s horn sounds. The REMORP uses a slick dual action switch. Press lightly on REMORP’s bulbous swelling to fire Orp’s loud sound and then press a little harder to fire Orp’s 96dB loud sound. The other cool thing about the REMORP is it provided an update to the Orp product line that worked for all Orps and Orp owners. It’s super neat and you should go to Orpland.com to get one… now!
Light Me Up!
Gerber came to FUSE with the problem they wanted to create a line of portable outdoor lights but not include the standard flashlights, headlamps, or microlights. They were looking for provocateurs (or disrupters if it were today). There was also no restriction on the technology other than it had to be readily available. The latter requirement quick solved itself to be battery powered LEDs, but the first requirement would take a great deal of collecting of user experience, brainstorming and conceptualization. Fortunately, we are prolific ideaters (if that’s even a word) and we generated over 150 ideas. With Gerber’s help, we winnowed these down to 5 and came up with a common battery cartridge component that all could use.
Visually all the designs had a common design language built around a hexogonal shape and all them included some sort of dual or multiple purpose that was reinforced by a physical transformation. For example the Hornet Micro Lantern could retract its beehive head into its body and turn into a handheld torch. Also of note is our Hornet Micro Lantern was ahead of its time. This idea of a small LED based lantern is now more commonplace.
Beyond the concepts, we provided surface models for the exterior control for all products, created a few proof of concept physical models , conceptually engineered the mechanical details and also helped name the products.
A design that cuts deep.
Gerber Legendary Bades came to FUSE to get industrial designs for what they called their clip knife line. These are the almost ubiquitous every day carry in almost every Oregonian’s pocket. All have a pocket clip on the back. We created 100’s of designs internally and presented 15 named knives that we felt were the best. 3 of them made it to production but the TRUSS was the most beautiful.