Develop a new pocket lighter
SMIRNOV DESIGN TEAM
Sergey Smirnov, Ann Reshetnikova,
Ivan Lipkov, Sergio Slaykhov, Anton Shurigin
SMIRNOV DESIGN TECHNICAL TEAM
Mikhail Oleynikov, Sergey Romanov
Q & A
Details are an extremely important thing for small objects. This project was my first experience with FMCG products. It’s a completely new field compare to medical equipment. In order to understand how people buy, choose, use lighters we started a design research.
I had a lot of questions right from the start. Important to say that the lighter has impressively high volume per month - 1 000 000, so the design had to be as technological as possible.
What color do customers prefer?
Is it expensive for manufacturing?
What is optimal hieght of the flame?
How flame guard should look like?
How deep should it go?
How many holes is better?
What type of a material?
It’s an FMCG!
What about safety?
What about children?
What type of plastic to use?
What type of welding technology is here?
How do they use it?
Where do they hold it?
What color do they prefer?
Who buys it?
Flame guard testing. My main goal was to understand how a flame guard should look and how it works. I started testing the air intakes of a steel flame guard to understand a flame’s stability. I made additional holes and tested them extensively. Different variations were made. There was a clear relation between the intake’s size and the flame’s quality.
Here I went one step further and tried different variations of flame guards. I mixed different parts of various lighters to find the best result. I made 40 on\offs without wind and 40 on\offs with wind to make statistics and compare results. That was a strong challenge for my thumb.
How long could a lighter work during one trial? What happened next? These questions were essential to answer. Two images display the lighter’s condition after testing. Cricket’s lighter had the best result because of material usage. It was nylon instead of ABS or equivalent. Nylon is highly impact- resistance, safe and reliable.
FORM FACTOR TESTING
After an endless design research we came up with massive data. Here is a simple idea - to protect the flame in a different way. We made a test. It revealed that the idea worked. After that we decided to make several prototypes to prove this idea.
Windproof test. There was a direct wind flow. We made a test of two flame guards: with and without protection. Chart shows the result how often lighter works per 10 on\off.
Here are several prototypes of what the idea could look like. For these models we had to find a jeweller to make them, because CNC milling could make only 1mm thin wall and the prototypes looked massive. This part (flame guard) is made with sheet metal stamping and the part is very thin - about 0,2 - 0,4 mm, however, the jeweller did a great job and the prototypes worked perfectly. Here are the results of testing - with ( ) and without wind ( ).
Here are some of the final proposals made by our design team. Each of them has it's unique styling and features inside.
Stamps for the designed flame guard cost a bit more than ordinary. There was an additional procedure in manufacturing process compare to traditional lighters. Due to our deep research and testing the customer was ready to pay a bit more because he knew that the idea worked.
Here are several CMF boards showing different collections. They cover all market zones. We divided the target to several areas: Westernized - from 30 to 60, professionals, inhabitants of big cities, desire to emphasis their personality and status. Pacesetters - young generation, creative, european orientated. Premium - for those who have the purchasing potential. Basic- simple, majority Based on target’s priorities the CMF collections were made.
This CMF board below was shown to the customer.
Here are 5 different CMF sets:
PRODUCTION MODELS & PACKAGE
When the project you have participated in is placed in a store it is an amazing feeling. Here is the production lighter. 25 lighters are in one box. Product packaging shows the main features of the lighter. There are several color collections.