NED (NOT BREAD)

A few summers ago we were on a camping trip with another couple and one of the partners  had a gluten allergy. We had stopped  at drive-thru for a quick refuel on the way back. The gluten free friend (GFF) had ordered a vegan burger with a lettuce wrap to avoid the bun. What a mess! There were condiments all over her hands and  subsequently, my car!   Not only is the gluten a problem, it’s also the high carbs of that bun. A typical burger bun is some 40 grams of high glycemic index refined white flour. There had to be a better way.

When we got back to or studio, I grabbed ( hang on, not physically)  a colleague and  we brainstormed. I always loved the genius of the edible ice cream cone, especially the  one inaccurately named the “cake” cone.  I did a little research  and these wonders of industrialization, a literal injection  molding  of water and flour are only 6 grams of carbs and that’s with rice flour. And, it gets better…, if you use almond flour, you can bring the carb count down to zero! Not to mention how brilliant the whole  family of edible  packages are!  Taco shells! Sushi! And then.. wholly cow ,  and  start digging in more,  and  did you know  the average common restaurant – remember those , burrito  flour tortilla  can be 80 grams of  carbs!!!

The big idea was to make a small edible piece of luggage, kidding, not luggage but a bread or tortilla  replacement that could be gluten free if needed  and lower carb. This is good for celiacs, diabetics and everyone that wants to lower their ingestion of high glycemic  index carbohydrates.  By the way,  the term “Keto” was Google searched for more than Subaru in the Pacific NW.

In terms of design,  this concept  allows  almost infinite shape, color, texture and flavor. This concept can replace anything where bread is simply a carrier. Think pizza, tacos, burritos, all the bread shapes,  even low carb snacks like crackers can be NED. Best of all if you were brought up by TV like some of  us were, then  you’ll love  the brand-ability of this concept. See the images above.

Knowing there’s a fair amount of tooling (though relatively inexpensive per mold) to make these things, we approached the Joy Cone company with NED. They are biggest  ice cream cone maker in the U.S.  with plants in Pennsylvania and Arizona. Joy makes special branded cones for  some of their largest customers.

I don’t  want to say we’re brilliant, but I think  given the hand friendliness, this qualifies as thumbelievable!

Ok, shutting up now –  have a look!

 

OTTOLOCK PRO MOUNT

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.

iBox

GE’s Supra division is the leader in providing access control in residential real estate and they came to FUSE to update their realtor’s keybox.   FUSE provided industrial design solutions and  this was the design chosen and recommended.  We worked hand in hand with Supra’s engineering team to integrate the mechanical features with our new design. We’re told this model had sales over 2,000,000 units.

Supra IBox Open Context

UPS Truck Trike

TruckTrike , a company that makes a human powered cargo transport vehicle was approached by  global logistics  leader UPS   to provide a  bicycle based  delivery vehicle. Truck Trike already makes an electric assist trike capable of moving 600 lbs and now they needed a proposal to excite UPS to get the contract.Truck Trike came to FUSE with this problem.   With a very short deadline FUSE developed an industrial design for a lightweight minimal canopy that would meet  a large cargo box  complete with interior illuminating transparent roof.   We rendered the model in UPS  brown with the requisite graphics to help UPS imagine this greener future.

We are happy to report the proposal was successful and UPS  is currently trialing modified Truck Trikes in Portland , Oregon.

Genisys Diagnostic Tool

OTC came to FUSE to essentially repackage a PC into an Automotive diagnotic tool. This main unit has a series  of accessories that plug into the unit, testing a variety of automotive engine attributes.  One of the major design improvement FUSE  made to this category of product was to  build in the toughness required into the housing. Typically this was a plastic box with external elastomer boot  that was an ugly addition. Instead we built a super robust internal chassis and over molded a  shock resistant thermoplastic  external armor. In addition, the design  featured symmetrical controls  suitable for both right and left handed users.

FUSE also did an alternative cosmetic design branded as a MATCO unit.

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GoGo Transporter

The  G0G0  Transporter  was an internal FUSE science project  seeking to solve 2 problems: 1. What’s the most ecologically friendly way to take advantage of Portland’s 20 minute neighborhood concept? And 2., what happens to the expensive strollers that children certainly grow out of ?

Answer number 1 is the wagon. With a wagon you can haul almost  anything while on foot. That is :a 50 lb bag of dogfood, groceries, kids, even a large potted plant.

The question  then became  “is a wagon enough?” Would other people share this wagon love? So we thought more, and  I had colleagues that were about to become parents and  his or her colleagues would pitch in and buy them a really cool expensive stroller. This got me thinking about what happens to these strollers beyond being used for a younger sibling. No one wants a pooped-on,  barfed-on second hand stroller or at least  there did not seem to be a robust used stroller market.   So, what if the stroller could be  built more like a  roof rack system where you could evolve the product to transform it into some-thing or things more useful once the child gets out of infancy?

This turned into the GoGo Transporter System whereby adding or subtracting components, you can make a variety of wheeled products.

Active Key for the iBox

GE’s Supra division  came back to FUSE to get an industrial design for an update to their E-Key. This was a dedicated device beyond the realtors cell phone that would beam an infra red signal to open the iBox. Our industrial design  was tied to the electronic internals provided by GE.

BIP Concrete Chairs

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.

Page Wide Web Press Control Station

With Great Control Comes Great Power.

HP came to FUSE to get help creating a control station for their almost battle shipped sized Page Wide Web Press , the T1100S. This  super sized printing press uses arrays of HP’s patented Ink Jet technology and applies it to a web (paper substrate) that is up to 110″ wide by literally forever. This sort of printer creates the 4 color images one would see on a corrugated box. The print is laminated to corrugated or other substrates in a finishing operation.

Our job was to come up with a work station that would encompass an array of monitors that not only control  the print job but also monitor multiple live views of the print/machine in progress and provide an expert system database if any adjustments or repairs are needed to the printer or the print.

The Pillar design includes a flip down keyboard tray if needed and is modular should an HP customer want more than 3 monitors. Of course,  our design would need to compliment the T1100S and  be built in materials and processes that reflect the  relatively low production quantities.

We were told the operator of this printer would never be sitting  so we created a Pillar of adjustable and replaceable touch screens.  The Pillar design includes a spacer that can be added or omitted should the operator be short or tall in stature. To house the hardware that runs the control station, we created a cabinet with cleverly disguised filter vents to avoid the accumulation of the paper particles that live in this environment. This project premiered at the  DRUPA show in Germany in 2016.

RED Orbiter Line

A Masters in Cartography

After the missing in action Crane Chair prototype, Herman Miller contacted FUSE to participate in  a design competition to design a furniture line or system that fell somewhere between  Office Depot and  the more expensive Contract furniture. We were told it need to be flat packed and Ready To Assemble (RTA). After that, the requirements were up to us. FUSE said “yes” and was given 3o days to come up with something to present at HM headquarters.  Our design focused on what we thought all start-ups, fast moving  design firms needed.  That is: what we needed.  We knew we wanted wheels and  adjustable work surface heights. We had built our own MDF work surfaced desks and knew how heavy they were.  We used this  super light structural material called PEPCORE for our work surfaces. We also noticed that all images of all furniture never showed the cords  that ran the CPU’s, monitors and equipment that every knowledge worker used . We made our vertical structures into cable ways with multiple access point for cords to enter and exit.

Our design was one of the winners and  went on to be prototyped by HM. Ultimately, we lost the PEPCORE work surface as the supplier could not make enough of it, cheap enough, but our design was being manufactured.