3D Printing Helps Product Designers Develop for Kickstarter
3D Printing Stories – Product Development
The low cost and increased accessibility of 3D printing has dramatically helped how people create new hardware designs and zany inventions, it is perhaps the pairing of both 3D printing and crowdfunding sites such as Kickstarter that have provided fertile ground for letting both amateur and professional hardware designers test new design concepts in a wider marketplace with little overhead risk.
Using 3D printing to help bring a product design idea to life, the three-man team behind a new portable smartphone stand and cable tidy called the Stikey, are just over 80% of their target goal of £12,000 on Kickstarter with over three weeks left to go in their campaign.
The three friends – Meletis, Ilias and Liban – who met during their college years in Athens, Greece, created a new smartphone stand. In addition to keeping your smartphone propped-up in either a vertical or landscape mode, the Stikey also features a built-in magnet that securely attaches to a small and thin metal tab that can be positioned on the back of a smartphone or smartphone case.
The magnet allows for users to have even more flexibility with mounting there phones including the ability to mount it on a wall next to a charger or on the dashboard of their car.
Dominating Kickstarter with the Stikey
While the final manufactured design of the Stikey will be made from polyurethane and will feature a matte finish similar to hard rubber, the designers spent an extensive amount of time developing their final design with the help of 3D printing.
“We developed Stikey in order to enhance our smartphone experience and add the element of versatility in the way we use them,” said the designers on their Kickstarter page.
“Another important aspect of our design approach was portability. We wanted users to have Stikey with them at all times in order for them to benefit from its features whenever needed. We have analysed different user profiles and developed several concept designs. From the initial concepts we moved on early prototypes which we tested with users for functionality and form.”
Quick iteration and 3D printing
After iterating and 3D printing the models throughout their design process, the team was able to land on a final design direction that both provides the function for the smartphone stand and is able to be carried easily using an integrated keychain clip design.
Assuming that the team can fund the production of over 2,000 Stikeys, they are more than confident that they will be able to fulfill their orders soon after the campaign ends.
“We have carried out a detailed production and delivery plan for Stikey and are committed to stick to it and send out rewards ASAP,” they added.
With nearly £9,879 raised of their £12,000 project goal, it’s safe to say that the team is likely on their way to their first Kickstarter success – thanks in no small part to the flexibilities and low cost of iterating on their designs with the help of a 3D printer.