Democratisation of design for functional objects manufactured by fused deposition modelling (FDM): lessons from the design of three everyday artefacts

Mark Goudeswaard, Ben Hicks, James Gopsill, Aydin Nassehi

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


The purpose of this paper is to explore how the democratisation of design can be achieved for useful
items manufactured by Filament Deposition Modelling (FDM). This is achieved through a design study
that involves the identification of typical functional objects manufactured by FDM and then performing
and mapping the design process for these items. Through analysis of the respective difficulties
contributed by different categories of actions, four areas of the design process are identified as requiring
improvement in order to democratise design. The study also finds that it is easier to amend models than
it is to generate them from scratch. This leads to the consideration of democratising design through
amending existing models in design repositories, such as Thingiverse. The discussion examines the
consequences of these findings and how they impact the requirements and possible functionality of a
system that could meet the challenge of democratising FDM design.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 24 Aug 2017
EventInternational Conference on Engineering Design - University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
Duration: 21 Aug 201625 Aug 2016
Conference number: 21


ConferenceInternational Conference on Engineering Design
Abbreviated titleICED 2017
Internet address

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