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.
No Fogging Way.
If you’re a skier or snowboarder you know how frustrating it is when everything is right but your goggles are fogged. It was this problem that client Dave McCullough expressed to his friends Howard Russell and Jack Cornelius. These two friends were sort of the dynamic duo of Patent Atty, Howard and Engineer, Jack. The two did some research and came up with a solution that could address this problem: Heated ITO film. ITO is a transparent conductive material that is sputtered onto a clear substrate. By applying a a voltage across this film, the surface heats up and decimates the fog. Having a firm grasp on the physics of fog, Jack correctly theorized we only needed to get the temperature above dewpoint.
Jack built a quick proof of concept with a couple of large lithium ion batteries and a piece of of ITO film. Next, Jack and Howard came to FUSE with the plan to build a ski goggle and challenge the industry. Long story short, FUSE did the industrial design, brought in the electrical engineer, built two generations of prototypes and completed the database for the final production version goggle. We also found the manufacturer and key suppliers and creatives along the way, named the colorways and even named the the company founded to deliver this new piece of equipment. Abom sold out of their first years production.
Be More Splatterproof!
Orp was developed after a spate of fatal right hook vehicle vs. Bicycle accidents hear in Portland Oregon. It seemed like there had to be a way to make bikes more visible to drivers. It seemed a a loud horn could make this visibility happen. Also with this digital platform we could design our own sounds and have multiple sounds. We were really excited and started with just a dual tone horn but got a big “meh” from targeted users. When you look at the circuitry it got us thinking, it would be really easy to add LEDs wyhout adding a whole lot of volume.
Adding the lights made Orp much more intriguing. You ve got to have a light, right? With a slew of positive feedback we launched a Kickstarter campaign and it did fairly well. Our media coverage during the campaign and after production was amazing. Highlights included the TODAY show, Wired and the Wall Street Journal.
It took a year to get us to production Orps. We went to the factory twice during that year. About a year later we introduced the REMORP-Orp’s Remote. All Orps were built Remote Ready.First year sales were amazing there are around 30,000 Orps in the world and stillm its growing.
A Friend Furever.
Furilla started life as a gift for a friend but then that friend’s friends also wanted Furillas. Next, FUSE had several projects to enter into the IDSA IDEA competition and we thought Furilla would be a welcome reprise from the more serious ID products the judges would evaluate. Unexpectedly, Furilla won a Bronze. With this small bit of notoriety it seemed like an OK idea to launch Furilla.com, a website that would sell Furillas. Soon enough Furillas ended up all over the world. Furilla was fortunate to slide into then unknown to us blossoming designer toy trend. Furilla got picked up by several media outlets and was sold at KIDROBOT and even had a premier at Chicago’s ROTOFUGI. Above is totally a cover story. The real story involves invitro fertilization and a freak accident.
Late in 2005 KIDROBOT decided they wanted to license Furilla and build production in Asia. We were on board but then the project hit a snag when the pricing swelled beyond feasibility.