March 30, 2020

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A Dimensional Flat-Pack Shelf with Tool-Free Assembly

Designer: zweithaler Client: Mutamo from Core77

The furniture line ORTO by zweithaler is based on a structural design principle, which results in structures that are stable without any connectors. The horizontal MDF boards of the shelf ORTO 53 are held up and locked by skewed wooden poles, which allow for flat pack delivery and tool-free mounting.

Design Team

Design: studio zweithaler, Graz – Austria

Producer:, Zeltweg Austria

Günther LinshalmOrto 53Frontal View

Günther LinshalmOrto 53Detail

Günther LinshalmOrto 53Detail

Günther LinshalmOrto 53Detail

Günther LinshalmOrto 53Shelf Detail

Günther LinshalmOrto 53Top Shelf

Günther LinshalmOrto 53Top View

Günther LinshalmOrto 53Flat-Pack-Delivery no tools needed

Studio zweithalerOrto 53Mood

Miriam RaneburgerOrto 53CNC Production at Zeltweg HIZ Mutamo

Miriam RaneburgerOrto 53Prototype

As a follow-up of past projects by studio zweithaler, the Orto furniture line relies on their tried and proven structural design principle: horizontal boards held up and locked by skewed poles. The use of this principle on a small scale results in a shelving system which allows for flat-pack delivery and tool-free mounting.

As the smallest of its kind in a series of projects, Orto translates this structural principle to a domestic scale. Its spatial structure establishes a sculptural, but also a functional container for precious and everyday objects. As the construction relies on the exact positioning of the poles, colored MDF was chosen as the material for the horizontal boards – contrasting with the hue of poles and topside made out of beech.

In order to speed up the design process, the structure was computed with Grasshopper for Rhinoceros 3D. The parametrically configurable algorithm allows to intuitively run through different variations for fine tuning and proportioning. Just like the assistance of machines is vital for the design process, they are also needed for manufacturing: the structural principle relies on precise positioning and rotation of the holes, which can only be achieved by industrial robots in a reasonable time.

The furniture line was developed in cooperation with Mutamo, a Styrian partner for independent low-volume production. Its design is tweaked for regional production and sustainable packaging and shipment. Orto 53 is the first piece of this series, followed by Orto 72 which is planned to be published midsummer 2019, also on Mutamo.

Orto 53 is part of the Unesco World Wide Things Collection, which was displayed at the Design Monat Graz 2019.

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