After a round of brainstorming, this was the initial proof of concept for the drawer slide mechanism. A PCB carriage with a series of high-voltage electrodes sits within the lid that requires protection from users and vice-versa, and shelf space constraints didn't allow for a lifting lid. Thanks to some inclined planes and springs, horizontal lid motion translates to vertical carriage motion. A magnetic catch kept the lid in the forward position and a coil spring assisted with the return.
The initial prototype was built from rapid-prototyped sheet metal base and an FDM housing.
Sheet metal chassis
Further refinements added PEM inserts and welded brackets, and geometry was refined in partnership with an Industrial Designer.
The chosen design from the Industrial Designer was translated into CAD and components were designed for injection moldability and ease of assembly. This was my first exposure to surfacing and the basic model was developed by my boss. I used this as a baseline and made design changes/improvements, then facilitated cast urethane and sheet metal prototype fabrication.
The first assembled beta prototype with cast urethane and sheet metal components is shown here. It highlighted the need for some design improvements, but demonstrated functionality, aesthetics, and basic assembly.
Pippin Prep system
The first prototypes were delivered to our client's customers for initial data-gathering and preliminary lab testing.