Time to Rethink the Glue-Gun

In this project we have been some ground rules, a proper industry project that will make us think about the type of work we would get when working for a company.

We are given the internals for glue gun that has existed for some time and asked to re-design the casing to make this bland glue gun look more like a modern-day design. I am looking forward to how this test our design capabilities and how the restrictions will help me to be more creative, to figure out a way to put my own style of design into this project.

A great way to get this project going, was to choose a target audience for my design and find a way to market this glue gun. At first I had to research glue guns that already exist and come up with hole in the market place for certain types of glue guns. So far this is what I have found.

As you can see from the images above, most glue guns today, are designed with a similar aesthetic, this straight bulky top sections, with handles that stand or curve and different angles. The ones that interest me are the ones that look like pens. These have a more simplistic look to them, even one that has a more contemporary aesthetic. I think this is the route I will go down, and from my research I can see there is a space in the market for a glue gun that offers a modern-day look, for people with varying hand sizes.

Another major part of this project, is to help fine tune and CAD and CAMM skills that may be lacking. Now, my CAD has not been practised as much as I would like, due to the more philosophical nature of the previous project I was involved with. I am hoping that my training in CAD and previous experience will keep up to date with the designs I come up with for this project.

The other aspect, the CAMM part of this project, stands for Computer Aided Model Making. This should be great, as I have minimal experience when it comes to using the CNC machines and I hope this will change in the coming weeks. The idea of CAMM is to construct and perfect CAD model of our design being able to export these files, allowing for model making machines to create a life size model. These models will of course be facsimile, meaning that we can test them for user comfort and appropriate sizing; without it having to be functional.


A Futuristic (yet this happened in the past) Summary:

First off I would like to say I have enjoyed this project, it has thrown me out of my usual, technically minded comfort zone. The conversations I have had have inspired the research we have done as a group and how I wanted to proceed with this project.

In the first two weeks, we were tasked with mapping out our ideas onto the wall to create a detective like collage that linked all our ideas together. At first I thought, what if we create a project around each one of our ideas, creating some sort of “hertzian space” multi-verse idea. I soon found this was not going to be plausible as some of our ideas were too separate from each other.

We spent a lot of time talking and deliberating over which idea was best to move forward with and found out we were all happy with Kinetic architecture and that technology surrounds us. So, there you have it, what if the Hertzian space around us could control the building we walk in? For instance, the bubble of signals around you would interact with nanotechnology in the walls to create an opening for you to walk through. Upon reflection and questioning from Steve and Martyn, we realised this idea had no ground as there was no cause for this kind of technology to exist. More on this later.

Creating two separate groups was a great call as it allowed us to explore more than just one idea. Sometime in the middle of this project, myself, Callum, Kayla and Todd realised we had another idea that we thought needed attention in this exciting project. This was the start of Group C. (for me this meant option C, as in all the above). We wanted to take all of the ideas from our mapping weeks and see if we could come up with a body of work to represent the idea of death and what it means in our society.

In a long and very through provoking conversation, we were throwing around question like: “What is the afterlife? Could Murder be legal if no one dies? Can people be trusted with control of death? What if too many people died and we run out of space?” Then we thought about of presenting these ideas. Do we use video graphics, projections? Until eventually the DUST settled, what if dust is the key?

Sometime passed and the eureka moment happened, we created the Amazon Pulse (there is no sponsorship from amazon or any of its products). A device than can recall the emotions of lost loved ones. One day we will have so much information on social media that a program could take all the qualities it learns about a person and re-create them, using the ashes and dust lying around them. Even more personal, when a person is cremated the ashes of that person could be used to re-create them. Before the death of a person, there facial emotions and daily reactions could be recorded so that the amazon pulse could even talk to you. Say a wife would ask a husband “honey how do you carve a turkey?”. The normal response may be “you carve a turkey like this…”. But the Pulse animation may respond with “Aren’t you a vegetarian?”. This would be the response because on a personal level, the lost loved one would know enough about the living person to answer this way.

This was presented in a way that could show the best qualities of all our work. Myself and Kayla had a photo shoot to merge the many emotion of my face into one image. (This graphic was photo-shopped by Callum). Insert.


This was to be used as the promotional poster, to show that the Pulse could capture and emit all the emotions of a person once lost. Along with the ones below that show what the Pulse would look like in a home situation.

Todd created a device that could hold a camera in front of a person’s face and spent a day recording his daily activities. This was cropped together into a video and this represented the type of things that Pulse could record. Just imagine being able to go for a walk or bike ride with someone once lost to you.

My role was to create a manifesto that would show the audience exactly what we were aiming for in this project.manifesto

When writing the manifesto, I was looking into other products on amazon and thought I would add a bit of humour. Making the manifesto an advertisement for the Pulse, tell customers about its amazing features and what it could do for you.

At the end of our presentation, we received great feedback and found that a lot of laughter was had during it. A comment that was made was, what was the significance of the humour? Upon reflection, I thought that humour was as the other end of a deadly situation, so it shows the very bitterness of death.

Going back to Group four, now known as the World of Bubble. Since the idea of kinetic architecture, we thought, what if society had depleted the world natural resources with such a high demand for mobile phones and could we use the hertzian space around us to create and immaterial mobile phone. Below is an image of our Manifesto: Insert:



To put this shortly, our technology, information and world could be controlled by this bubble that surrounded us. It would work using the very energy that we use and draw in any bad signals around us and turn them into something useful. Being married to someone would mean sharing your bubble, creating a family would connect your bubbles and therefore connect everything about you. Your personality, your date and your loves would always be connected.

To help present this, our Graphic designers Clare and Sarah created some great visuals to show how the world of bubble would look for a Wobbler. Along with an artefact, made by myself and Callum that shows a city of people and couples walking around with their bubbles.

After our presentation, I was given time to reflect on our ideas, maybe the device works like google maps where only relevant information would be stored, based on your location and the activity you were doing. When having children, the bubble would connect them to you, until they were old enough to have their own, like a parent giving their child their first phone.


Overall I have thoroughly enjoyed the out of the box thinking of these projects. I see now that the world is not all about what is directly in front of you, but what could happen. There is an infinite possibility of futures ahead of us, and it’s up to our generation to decided what kind of designs with influence future generation. Even though I am a BSc product designer, I aim to use what I have learned here to help with my designs in the future. Combining my technical knowledge of what already exists; with this critical aspect of design, I aim to change the way people see design and how social and politically aimed designs can shape a different future.

Two Different Groups?

At the start of this third week of our futures projects, we were again asked the question; where do you belong in the Dunne and Raby Cone of Preferable Futures? What this is, is shown below…


The cone shows the movement of time from present to the future and where we all may end up. It says that we will end up in either the possible, plausible and probable zones; however we wish to end up in the red section, the preferable section.

I decided myself and the group were somewhere in the possible section, near the future. This is because our idea fits that category.

Our idea is simple, what if one day we could control the architecture around us, using the hertzian space that surrounds us? We believe that one day architecture will become so advanced that walls will be made from nanotechnology, this means that you could program the nanites to move out of peoples way when they walk up to the building. tr10-banners-nanoarchx-2020-933x445

Now onto the title of this blog and yes you read it right i am now part of two groups, myself and Callum have formed another group with 2 others from different groups. We have done this to bulk out an idea that we were collectively happy with and wanted to continue.

This idea was all about re-thinking to meaning of life (in a more practical way) for instance what if someone could sit and have a chat with a lost loved one? We spent a lot of time sat around a table, discussing the different ideas and how communicating with the dead would open a world of problems for religious, ethical and political areas of society.

We were then tasked with asking what if questions, these were the one I cam up with…

  • If people could not be killed, wold murder be legalized?
  • If too many people died would there be no space for burial?
  • would it be possible to re-animate a dead persons ashes?
  • What would be the psychological effect of this?

These were the questions we will be asking over the next two weeks, when coming up for a solution to our groups idea. The next part of this idea was to come up with a way to represent our idea, these were a few ideas we had at the time…

  • Illustrations
  • Projections
  • Videos
  • Human shaped figures
  • Dust people
  • Tube people

Onto the next week and fingers crossed both projects will be moving swiftly to a final outcome.

Providing Structure

More specifically, sharing the load. Now we know what a force is and how it acts on an object; we look to the real world and see that it much ore complex that that. What happens when more that one force is acting on an object?

If more the one element can share the load, amounts of material used in a product can be reduced. If we consider 2 cables hanging an object and they are equally distant and equally angled, then they will split the load between the 2 of them.
If the 2 cables are at different angles then the load will not be equal, but each load will vary depending on the different angles that the wire hang from.

Resolution of Forces (parallelogram of forces)

Remember that force is a vector quantity (size and direction) so we can draw a vector diagram!

  • Draw a line to scale that represents the force (e.g. 10N = 1cm)
  • Draw lines from the top of this at the same angle as the cables
  • Draw line parallel with angled lines, these lines intersect the angled lines completing the parallelogram

Disadvantage: if your drawing is not accurate then you will not get a correct result.



This example hear demonstrates 2 wires hanging at 30 and 60 degrees holding a 100N weight. The center line being 10cm long so each cm represent 10N, when measure the green line is 8.7cm and the Red line is 5cm long. It can therefore be assumed that the 30 degree cable is acting 87N of force and the 60 degree cable is acting 50N of force.


What happens If we are not given the T force, well that’s simple, it can be calculated using the following equation:

  • R= √(p2+q2+2pq coz θ)

R being the resulting force.
P and Q is amount of force acted on by the two cable (the above would be 87N and 50N).
θ is calculated from the sum of the 2 angled provided (the above would be 30deg and 60deg).

Columns and Struts

Columns are well tried and tested means of supporting loads particularly very heavy loads.
Stress = force/area
Failure modes is what happens when an object or material comes under so much force it starts to bend and warp this can be defined as Buckling this can be based on the angel and forces applied to a material.

Struts are a structural member which is subject to a compression force. Slender struts will fail by buckling before the yield point is reached. When the critical load is reached, the strut will buckle. The value of critical load depend on the end fixing conditions.

e.g. the struts in a car that keep is compression load correct.1pcs-lot-7514-soft-ruler-double-scale-infinite-bending-15-cm-students-ruler-free-shipping

Like a ruler, the longer the ruler the less force needs to be applied to start the buckling process. So, having a shorter ruler (of the same material) will make it stronger, or using thicker or other different shapes will increase its strengths to stop buckling.


If a strut buckles under the same load (W), the effective length (L) of each strut will be as shown below.

In a design, this idea can be used to figure out how long to make something before I buckles, either under its own weight, or the weight that it is holding. By using shorter and stronger materials the load can be spread more easily thus creating a stronger design.

Effective length = L x K
It is the length at which the materials buckles.

L = length of buckling
K = constant depending on how it is fixed (K is either 1, 0.5, 2 or 0.7)


A Bucking is a failure based on the angle at which it is compressed, depending on the force and how it is attached at either end.

Non-Axial Loads:

Columns do no always stand straight, the may fall at different angles.
Using a weight, you can give a column more stability.
Using a tie beam can reinforce a structure (archway) by taking the load via tension, so then it stops the angled force.
This means you can use thinner column and structures making it cheaper and much more efficient.


Two types of beams commonly used to build structures are called the cantilever and the simply supported beam.
Simply supported – fixed at both ends.
Cantilever – Fixed at one end.
Cantilever will droop because in undergoes a proportionate amount of strain at one end. When a weight is applied to the end the ore amount strain will be at the end where the beam is fixed.
Simply supported beams droop in the center only when a weight is applied to it. The most amount of strain will be either side of the beam where the beam is fixed.

Bending Moments:
If a load is place on the free end of a cantilever the beam droops because the bending moment increase the further you get away from the point of application of the load

  • Bending moment = force x distance
  • In our case L x W (length of beam x weight of object)

Upon Reflection:
I have learned that

  • Amounts of material can be reduced, by using more that one element to share the load.
  • I can provide stronger support from objects by using the correct fixing points.
  • A way to calculate the amount of force that can be taken from different cables hanging at different angles on different points on a object.
  • That weight and bar can be used to provide extra support for heavy roofed buildings
  • That there are 2 types of beams,  and how to provide strength to each type.

From this I aim to do more research into different materials I can use when supporting different weights and what kind of structures I would need to have when designing complex constructions.