Sunday, May 24, 2009

On Functional Structure of a Pen

One of the biggest downfalls of the modern design of the pen is that more than two thirds of the pen sticks out of your hand when you use it. I have never really understood why this is necessary, and the designers of modern pens should be ashamed of themselves. When an engineer designs an aircraft, every effort is made to remove unnecessary weight. Any structure that does not carry out a function that is absolutely critical to the safe operation of the aircraft is left out.

I decided to apply my engineering knowledge to make modifications to a pen, in order to eliminate some of the useless components. I identified the function that a pen is required to fulfil, and noted that 55% of the structure and 25% of the mechanical components played no part in fulfilling this function.

With the aid of a concrete floor, a shoe and some sticky tape, I managed to make the necessary modifications to make a 45% weight saving on the pen, while increasing its effectiveness by 15%, and reliability by 50%.

The only problem with it is that the tape slips because the spring needs to be compressed 15% further to make it louder...

It clicks louder, and fits perfectly in my pocket, and that other bit that sticks out of my hand is no longer a problem, and it has a 0% chance of leaking. (I could never work out why they needed to put a tube filled with ink in pens anyway)
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