Hammerhead is a New York-based firm whose mission is to construct the best biking computer systems.
They approached our design studio, Guacamole Airplane, to reimagine the structural packaging for his or her latest product, the Karoo 2, a handlebar-mounted sensible GPS unit. Particularly, Hammerhead was trying to keep away from non-recyclable EVA foams, which that they had relied on for the unique Karoo 1 packaging.
Not solely would we be packaging the GPS machine itself, however Hammerhead additionally wanted to incorporate a handlebar mount, wrench, USB twine, lanyard, and instruction handbook. Hammerhead required a design appropriate for transport in all of their goal markets and strong sufficient to outlive direct-to-consumer shipments.
Plus, we wanted to eradicate the usage of pointless plastic foams whereas concurrently crafting an unboxing expertise acceptable for a well-engineered product. With the backing of a corporation dedicated to good design and impactful sustainability measures, we set to work.
Unfolding the Potentialities
We started by conducting an audit of related sustainable packaging supplies and processes, offering samples and manufacturing context for the whole lot from mushroom-based foams and potato starch-based trays to extra typical supplies. We additionally explored the deserves of various sustainability methods—minimizing quantity to decrease carbon footprint in transport, and much more importantly, designing for curbside recyclability.
As soon as we had aligned on a sustainability technique with Hammerhead’s design, logistics, and administration groups, we took to the drafting board. A whole lot of sketches turned a collection of a dozen tough prototypes. From the preliminary sketches and tough mocks, we arrived at two totally different ideas to construct out as high-fidelity prototypes.
Idea 1 – The Slant Field
The primary idea was the Slant Field—an angular geometric bundle consisting of two die-cut paper bins that slot along with an outer sleeve. Because the sleeve slides off, the machine is nested right into a prime drawer that shows the Karoo 2 machine. A drawer opens from the outer field to disclose the secondary elements and mounts nested into die-cut paper trays.
The sustainability advantages of this idea are twofold. For one, it is totally paper-based, which means the elements are curbside recyclable. Secondly, by nesting the 2 bins collectively to keep away from pointless area, the general quantity of the bundle shrunk from 97 cubic inches to 59 if you examine to the unique Karoo 1 packaging. This lower in quantity interprets to an incredible discount in carbon emissions throughout transport.
Idea 2 – Topo Map
The second idea was a Topographic Map made with a PaperFoam tray—a sustainable different to molded pulp created from waste potato starch. We designed the tray to match the terrain of Compassberg, the best mountain within the Karoo desert, after which they named the machine. The type of the highest trays gives an emotive reveal, and a tab within the profile of Hammerhead’s brand permits the tray to raise and reveal the secondary elements in die-cut paper trays printed with comparable topographic patterning.
The environmental advantages of this idea rested closely on PaperFoam as a cloth alternative. PaperFoam requires 85% much less vitality to provide than typical molded pulp trays, because the waste potato starch is injection molded at a low temperature quite than cooked in huge ovens. PaperFoam carries a comparatively distinctive distinction of being each compostable and appropriate with paper recycling. That idea minimized quantity by nesting the tall portion of the handlebar mount beneath the elevated peak of the tray. That approach, we may keep away from an unnecessarily massive carbon footprint in transportation.
Tireless nights ultimately become a candy, candy actuality—after over 145 prototypes and refinements, Hammerhead determined to go together with the Slant Field for the Karoo 2 packaging. We labored in tandem with the producer to refine the ultimate dielines and make sure the bundle met drop-testing necessities, as Hammerhead’s Artwork Division nailed down the ultimate graphics for the container, specializing in a modern black on black graphic language with minimal ink utilization.
On the finish of the day, with a collection of humble folding cartons, we packaged a fancy collection of merchandise with out the usage of plastic foams or trays. They launched the equipment to glowing evaluations from the biking group, and we’re pleased with the packaging that successfully elevates the product with out doing any pointless environmental injury.
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