D&A GUITAR HANGER
“Why can’t there be affordable music accessories that look great, work well and protect our instruments at the same time?”
At RKS we started wondering why the music accessories market is so conservative and saturated. Designs are often poorly constructed with a focus on material and cost. Consumers are stuck with either a low quality product or an expensive one. We wanted to create a product that is well designed and engineered at an affordable price. We collaborated with musicians and engineers, and developed an innovating self-closing mechanism that truly secures your guitar and displays your instrument like a piece of art. After multiple iterations and dozens of prototypes, the guitar hangers were born. I functioned as the lead designer as well as the vender liaison for all D&A guitar products.
Most of existing guitar wall hangers resemble wall-hooks with lack of design, security and interactivity. It distracts from the true artwork on display. Our challenge is to design a hanger that not only looks great without a guitar but secure when a guitar is resting on it.
I worked very closely with our engineer team to design and develop a self closing mechanism that truly secures the guitar. Our goal is to minimize the profile as much as possible while maintaining its security. Finding the perfect balance between distance travelled and the force needed to shut the gates was no easy task. After dozens of iterations and mock-ups, we were able to minimize the profile from our original engineering mock-up (above) to our the current design.
IDEATION & DESIGN
The halo-ring design was inspired by the word float. I wanted to create the feeling of floating your guitar rather than hooking or hanging the guitar. The back plate is a low-profile, stamped-metal bracket intended to hide in the background and show off the halo effect. The design of the hangers should blend with your guitars and not disrupt them.
The passive hanger is designed to be minimal and strong. A low-profile halo like design that floats the guitar. The back plate is a coated, stamped-metal frame, and the yoke of the hanger has a soft TPE rubber over-mold with specialized teeth to maximize grip on virtually any guitars.
The active hanger is designed with full security in mind. We have developed an innovative sliding mechanism that closes with the weight of the guitar. Unless you lift the guitar up, the sliding door will not open. The design of the hanger, like the passive version, was to be kept as low-profile as possible with the same halo-like aesthetics. The top part of the hanger also has the soft TPE rubber over-mold with specialized teeth to protect the neck of guitars.
Gravity from the weight of the guitar engages the closing mechanism. The sliding door closes as the guitar is rested on the inner yoke with the rubber over-mold.
FOLDABLE GUITAR STAND
When your on the road, finding a place to set your guitar down is always a challenge. Lugging a huge metal guitar stand is also a challenge. Meet the Gigstand™, it is a compact, portable, and light weight foldable guitar stand. The Gigstand™ comes in two sizes, one for electric, and one for acoustic. It also fits easily in most gig bags and back pockets of jeans. The newly updated Gigstand™ is now stronger than ever, with lattice ribbings and reinforced joints; wider and stronger TPE over-molds.
The original design of the Gigstand™ had a weak pivoting point and did not fit a lot of the guitars due to its size. With little force, the Gigstand™ shuts close. We wanted to make sure that not only does the design gets sleeker, but the overall rigidity and structure also gets reinforced. By redesigning and adding a slightly larger Gigstand™ Acoustic to the lineup, we were able to fit most guitars. For both acoustic and electric Gigstand™, we reinforced the ribbings, joints, and pivoting point, and it can now withstand a lot more force before collapsing. We also increased the width and length of the TPE over-mold for extra protection and grip for the guitar.
Above: Both versions share the same design and details but slight different in size; the acoustic being the slightly larger one.
Below: Open position shows slight differences between the two
CHINA / HONG KONG
With quality in mind we wanted to make sure that all the D&A guitar accessories were built to standard. As the lead designer I was appointed as the vender liaison to ensure all of the design details and product constructions met our specs. Leading the processes from tooling all the way to final production. Working at the factories allowed me to debug and make modifications in parallel.
- Debug molds and tooling issues
- Running test shots to check consistency of plastic
- Injection gates
- Debug design from T1 - golden sample
- Working closely with engineers and manufacturers to fix issues from design
- Finding the right plastic and rubber for this application
- Quality control
- Material quality and consistency of parts
- Colors, materials, and finishes
- Construction and fitment of parts
- Review packaging samples