So you have an idea of something you want to create with Teflon? Awesome! You’re already halfway to creating your prototype.
No matter what you’re interested in making with Teflon, you’ll need to create a prototype first. This is how you get people interested in investing in your product, as well as drumming up interest. A prototype gives people something to look forward to, and something they can concretely see.
When you start your Teflon prototyping, you need to ensure that your vision is clear to not only yourself but the person you’re showing. The best prototype is one that not only inspires you but also your team.
Read on for some of the best ways to create a prototype and the best practices.
Know What You’re Doing
Before you create a prototype, you need to know what you’re doing. Although this sounds like a no-brainer, your mission for the product needs to be crystal clear.
This means you can’t create a product that sort of fixes a problem or sort of has a function. Instead, you need to know exactly what problem it will fix. You also need to know exactly how it will work and fit into the market.
If you’re not confident with your idea, no one else is going to get on board.
This doesn’t mean you can’t go through trial and error, but you do need to ensure things are relatively solid when you start showing it off to people. This is especially the case when showing it off to people who might either invest in it or help you sell your Teflon product.
Teflon Prototyping: Drawing
A drawing is one of the first and most basic ways to create a prototype. Even if you lack in basic art skills or failed your high school art class, you still need to create some kind of drawing. This enables others to see exactly what the product will look like and how you’ll create it.
While a drawing is an elementary version of the prototype, it is arguably one of the most essential. If you don’t have the necessary elements to build the prototype, you may need to rely on your drawing and the concept to get funding or the materials.
If you’re hopeless at drawing but have a slight prayer at graphic design, you can substitute this for your manual prototype. Just make sure you clearly label everything so that anyone looking at it knows what is what.
A clear drawing will be the foundation for your team’s first mock-up or design.
An alternative to a drawing is a physical mock-up of the design. You can create a Teflon pot prototype, for example, out of paper, wire and other materials. This gives those who may want to invest in your idea a clearer sense of how big you want to make the item and where it will fit.
When presenting the idea, you can be clear about where the Teflon and other materials will go and how they will be integrated into the overall design.
You can also use physical mock-ups, particularly if they are life-size, for the design team to handle and decide if there will be issues with the model. In this early stage, you can anticipate and solve problems that could have been created by the earliest models.
While you may think role-playing is reserved for fans of elves, sprites, and video games, you’d be surprised to learn that designers partake in it too.
Much like with the physical mock-up suggestion, role-playing scenarios in which you will use the Teflon product can help them anticipate issues.
For example, if you’re making cookware out of Teflon, they can role-play scenarios for which you will be using the tool. With or without a mock-up, together, you can decide which issues may come up and how to squash them before users find fault with them.
Be Clear About What Is Essential
Once you’ve got people on board to either fund or work on your prototype, you’ll need to begin to work on a more functional prototype. Your drawings and physical models are stepping stones to the prototype that allows you to mass produce your Teflon item.
When you create your prototype to get ready for mass production, you need to be sure you’re clear about what you can negotiate with and what you can’t. If, for example, you’re using Teflon for a pan because it is non-stick, you can’t then suddenly approve of switching materials for that portion of the pan. You can, however, switch out materials for other parts.
When your team comes together to create the first design, make sure they know what needs to be there, as dictated by you, and what can be changed. Some changes will occur for financial reasons or practical reasons, but they shouldn’t be the things you’ve already stated cannot change.
Keep Focus at the Beginning of Development
When you’re creating a prototype, you want to ensure that your product is ready to go by the deadline. This means you’ll want to work out all possible kinks by the ship date. You can change some things after the production of a newer model, but this isn’t the best practice.
Instead, many engineers suggest that you put in all of your effort to create your Teflon product at the very beginning. It can be expensive, and even impossible, to change key features late in the game.
Teflon prototyping is not much different from other forms of prototyping. In all scenarios, you’ll want to solve a problem that many customers have by creating a piece that does it simply. If it doesn’t solve a problem, it brings an added sense of convenience.
When prototyping, you’ll want to make sure that the product is perfect before it hits shelves or gets shipped to your customer.
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