There’s an old idea about a pendant lamp/chandelier. Gerard created it many years ago but was not happy with the design. He needed a piece that kept all parts together, and to see if this piece does the trick, he needed a prototype. 10 Years ago prototyping was much too expensive for a start-up. Today there’s 3D printing and Gerard asked Kees if he could print this:
Kees opened SketchUp and started drawing. It’s a very basic shape, so it took only an hour 3D drawing time. Next, the Leapfrog 3D printer started printing and a few hours later the first prototype was ready to be tested. Gerard took it home and checked it’s functionality. Some small adjustments were needed. Kees adjusted the model and printed a new piece. This time he used a slower speed to raise the 3D print quality. That’s how this prototype became a product, ready to build the Gerard Schoone chandelier called TRAPEZE 01.
Some years ago, only big companies could afford to prototype and test new ideas. At the same time, it took at least a month before the first prototype could be tested. Today anybody can prototype and test ideas, in days. That’s one of the big powers of 3D printing. The only disadvantage: mass production is not an option. But when your idea is 3D printed, tested and proven okay, you can always use mass production methods to sell it on a large scale.
‘Schoone Lights’ is not aiming for mass production. We use 3D printing to build our products. Usually we go for ‘Infill Only’ 3D printing to print exclusive light shades, sometimes we use 3D printing to test and build missing links.