Materials Technology: Wood

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  • Topic: Wood, Pine, Hardwood
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Materials Technology Wood
Examination Number: 51728

Design Brief Higher Level

An organised environment enhances a young person’s bedroom space .
Design and make a slimline, wall-mounted storage unit for use in a bedroom. A portion of the unit should provide a means of concealing a number of personal items. The unit should be of elegant proportions, enhanced by the natural beauty of solid wood. Your design should reflect the sustainable ideal of doing more with less.

The maximum dimension of the unit should not exceed 500mm.

Analysis of Design Brief

Identification of requirements

1. Slimline

2. Wall mounted storage unit

3. Conceals Personal items

4. Must be of elegant proportions

5. Enhanced by beauty of solid wood

6. Do More with less

7. Should not exceed 500mm

In order of importance these would be:

Must be a Wall mounted storage unit that, should be slimline, Should not exceed 500mm whilst doing more with less and enhance the beauty of solid wood and should me of elegant proportions

My Design Requirements for Wall mounted Storage Unit

Must be Capable of storing General Items (built in requirement)

Must be wall mounted (built in requirement)

Should be easy to open

Should be able to conceal personal items

Should be enhanced by solid wood

Must do more with less

It Should be functional whilst maintaining attractiveness (Built in requirement)

Must not exceed 500mm

Should be of elegant proportions

It should be safe and stable

Investigation and

Size and shape
To begin my Investigation I measured some of the storage units in my house. The measurements of these were 423mm x 587mm, 309mm x 309mm , 400mm x 400mm and 300mm x 300mm. As the first one was bigger than the allowed dimensions (500mm x 500mm) I disregarded it. I also did a “Google” search on the internet for most popular storage unit sizes. This produced 79 million search results, I reduced the search results by adding the phrase “in Ireland” with the domain of “.ie”.This brought the search results to an achievable 7000 results. I browsed the top ten results and the size of storage unit which seems to be most popular was 320mm x 300mm. I based my dimensions on all these factors and arrived to the final decision of 400mm x 400mm as personally I felt any less would have been too small and any more it wouldn’t be of elegant proportions.

To decide a shape I looked at magazines , catalogues ,television ads and the internet to determine what shapes were already available. The magazines used were “This is carpentry”, “Popular Woodworking” and “WOOD”. The catalogues used were “Argos” and “IKEA”. The internet had lots of images of different kinds of wall mounted storage units and a selection of these are available on the next page. There seems to be two main shapes of storage units: a rectangular shape and a more traditional square design. I decide to use the square design as I feel its more practical

One of the design brief requirements is that it should enhance the beauty of solid wood. My intentions were to use only hardwoods as they are regarded as being more solid and beautiful than softwoods. After some investigation however I estimated the cost of using all hardwood to be far above my budget. Also hardwoods are far heavier than softwoods and as the storage unit is wall mounted I thought it should be lighter as there’ll be less chance of it falling off the wall.

The choice I was left with was: Douglas Fir, Scots Pine,
Sitka Spruce , Lodge pole pine and Larch.
I looked at their
advantages and disadvantages to determine which to use

Hard, Strong, resistant to decay , cracking, splitting. Easily worked by machine and hand tools Attractive grain
Hard knots-difficult to work with. Can dull cutting edges

Fairly strong and stable,...
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