The Next Towel

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Introduction: The Next Towel

About: I'm new here but I hope to upload more of my project and continue to devote some of my time in making free and open-source projects for the world.

The towel solutions that gives people their preferred level of hygiene. Project started as my effort in helping to stay healthy during the CoViD19 period.

Let me explain its use cases based on different personality's of users :

The impatient user : Are you the type of guy that just doesn't care and dries his hands on what ever is in reach? No problem! The basket is made out of the original towel and ready to take care of your daring hands.

The socialist user : Are you going to cook food or just want less chance of dirtying your hands on a shared towel? No problem! Take the joy of getting your own personal towel smoothly handed over to you. Simply pick the towel most appealing to you and rotate it, releasing it out of the rings without touching the 3D printed parts. So you won't leave bacteria and viruses for the next wet handed person and you won't get theirs. Need to leave the towel somewhere after you are done drying? We thought of that too! Just throw it in the basket made from your original towel.

The cleaner : We even thought about the heroes doing the laundry of these re-usable personal towels. You can smoothly remove the whole towel bag by pulling it up by the clip and throw it in the washing machine, without touching any of the used towels. (Only use water and heat proof materials like PET printed clips for inside the washing machine! )

Supplies

3D prints :

  • Materials

    - Can be printed from most common materials without problem and without support (PLA, ABS, PET).
    - I would advice making the clips from PET if you want to throw the basket in the washing machine without removing the clips. (I did not test this yet, so try on own risk).

  • Files
    - Files are available at the following location : https://www.prusaprinters.org/prints/28175
    - .gcode for Prusa printers is also available on this location, no slicing needed.
    - .step files also available on same location if you wish to go wild with modding or adding new modules yourself.


Towels :

Designed for common found towels of around ~30*30cm (11.8*11.8").
You can also cut exiting towels to 30*30cm.
OR even better! Ask your family members to knit some custom towels!

Step 1: The Idea :

I wanted to try and design something that helps with hygiene in daily activities. We've brainstormed about what are the most not-hygiene things we touch every day. On top of our list was the shared towel commonly found in kitchens, toilets and small offices. We all share the same towel, some wash their hands better then others. Sometimes we even use it for things other then just drying hands. And let's be honest. when was the last time you've changed the towel? We've made a solution for this. We also wanted to keep some of its original recognizable shape,location and function for people who don't care as much or don't understand its function yet. (Think about kids, guests or elderly).

Open Source : This work is licensed under a Creative Commons (4.0 Internatlional License) - Attribution-ShareAlike Want to make modifications? I uploaded the step files here : https://www.prusaprinters.org/prints/28175

Step 2: Designed in Fusion 360

I used Fusion 360 for 3D modeling this project. I've been learning it on my own now for almost a year and I really like it. It is decent intuitive compare to most other 3D modeling tools while also being very complete and easy to work with. Specially if you get the hang of how parameters and the timeline work. I added a video of some movement tests I did to check clearance and function before printing it out. It also shows a parameter example where I change the towel clip with only one dimension (Height) while it calculates all other needed parameters on its own, such as the number of pointy bits grabbing the towel and its spacing. You can use it for free, so give it a try!

Step 3: 3D Printing

From the link : https://www.prusaprinters.org/prints/28175 you can download all files needed.

What to print : The print is designed to be modular, so it is easy to add or remove modules as you like. But I would advice to start with the default of 2 towel modules (2 towels each, 4 total) and 1 basket module.


This is what you need to print for the default setup :

2x the duo towel modules :

  • 2x RingFrame Duo.stl (PLA)
  • 8x 2x1 Frame joint block.stl (PLA)
  • 1x Hanging Bar.stl (PLA)
  • 8x RotatingLockRing.stl (PLA) (Nice to do in a different color then the frame ;)
  • 1x Hanging Loop / Hook (Choose if you want to have a centered Hoop, Loop or 2x free sliding hooks based on what kind of hanger you have for you towels). (PLA)

1x the towel basket module :

  • 1x Towel Basket Frame.stl (PLA)
  • 1x Towel Basket Main clip.stl (PET*)
  • 2x Towel Basket Side Clip.stl (PET*)
  • 1x Towel Basket Bottom Clip.stl (PET*)

In the pictures I added a few examples of how you can print all needed files in 3 sessions. But I would advice doing only half of it per print session if you don't want to risk long and overnight print.

Step 4: Assembly

Here is a video of the assembly to make it a bit more easy.

Keep in mind that the rings only fit in one direction, the arrows on the ring should point in the same direction as the arrow with the "open ->" text on the side of the frame.

!! Be careful !! when pressing the rings into the frame, if you press the rings in with the force going in the wrong direction it might brake the ring holders. The best way to press the rings in is to use the method shown in the video, by pressing in the middle of the C shape where the spike are located.

Step 5: Upcomming Updates :

We are now testing and collecting feedback from users to include some feature request and even make an expansion kit. We are really enthusiastic about this project and really want to implement this solution in our, families and friends homes.

Up-coming (free) expansion pack will include the following features :

  1. Little hangers for the mini towels if you want to re-use a towel a few times before throwing it in the bag. Say when you are cooking, you can start with a fresh one, and throw only pick a new one when you are done with it and going to serve the food.
  2. Increased capacity for more uses without having to refill
  3. Towel Cartridges for storing and quick swapping whole frames of towels in one go.
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    3 Comments

    0
    Volpethrope
    Volpethrope

    8 months ago

    Suggestion: larger hooks for the top. My bathroom towel rod is just slightly too big for the default ones. Overall love the idea though. :)

    0
    38ren
    38ren

    1 year ago

    This looks so fancy and cool. Thanks for sharing!

    0
    Penolopy Bulnick
    Penolopy Bulnick

    1 year ago

    This is a really nice idea! Great storage space saver :)