We recently needed to make two big and feature heavy mockups, and as they needed to be sturdy as well, we had to find a new system to create the mockups
We just posted a piece on why scale models are a good idea, and when the models are done and the pool of concepts is narrowed down, the next logical step is a full sized mockup.
We recently got into this phase on the scissor-lift project we're currently working on. The project was narrowed down to two concepts, and we wanted to make them both as full scale mockups before finally deciding on a concept.
Previously we've build a mockup of a hedge trimmer using wood and bike-parts, but this approach wouldn't cut it for the two new mockups, as they where bigger, had more features and needed to be sturdy in order to test the concepts.
We started looking for a system to facilitate the mockups, and settled on a system made for process lines: LinearModul.
What LinearModul looks like in its normal environment.
LinearModul - a system for process lines
Full sized mockups are all about building fast to confirm or decline the assumptions you have about your concept, and cramming as many features into the model as possible is an important part of that.
The challenge in building such a mockup of the scissor lift, was the lifting tool; The tool is big and has a lot of features and it needs a certain sturdiness and stability as it's supposed to make heavy lifts 360 degrees around the lift.
For those reasons the LinearModul-system made sense to use. It's made for process lines in the industry, which makes it's extremely durable, and as the name suggests it is pretty flexible.
It turned out to be the perfect fit for the large mockups, as LinearModul made it possible to create the features we needed:
Closeup of the LinearModul-system in use on our scissorlift (Closeup because parts of the concept is still confidential)
Features are key
The LinearModul-parts are relatively expensive, and we ended up investing 40.000DKK for the parts we needed to build our two mockups.
The reason for the steep price is, that the parts are made for 10.000 cycles on a process line - on our mockup they'll most likely be used for 10-20 cycles. The good thing is: the mockups can be disassembled and used again for new mockups.
The price was steep, but the system made it possible to create full sized mockups fast and with the right features. Having mockups with all the features makes it so much easier to communicate and test how it works - and in the end choose the right concept.