One of the features of my product will be a workstation that will be completely out of the way until it is needed. This idea came to me during the research phase, as people who would buy this project might not have any gardening tools to begin with, as they would not have a garden. So that begs the question: Where would these tools be stored if purchased?
The workstation serves as an area where each plant can be tended to without leaving the immediate area of the product. It would allow people to do their gardening in one spot, reducing the amount of time and movement necessary. It is beneficial in that it can be deployed easily and hidden just as quickly, ensuring that all maintenance issues are catered to. The workstation also serves as an area for tool storage. When deployed, the storage area is lowered down so that the tools are in reach of the table. When not in use, the tools are elevated up out of the way, but still accessible if their services are required.
As you can see, the work station pulls out from the frame of the product. The first concept was very rough and needed some refining.
One of the first issues that was present were the supports beneath. There were two major concerns. Firstly, this iteration required the user to deploy both struts separately before extending the workstation. This created three separate actions to perform one task. The second issues was that the supports were unable to retract properly. The right one had to be folded back first before the second one. And the second one could not be folded back until the first one was almost fully retracted as they would make contact with each other:
This sparked a redesign with the supports themselves. Taking the KISS principle to heart, three separate designs were created to solve this issue. The winner was the foldable support:
As you can see, when hiding the table, they retract of their own accord, and do not make contact with each other. This also allows the task to be performed through one task only, and not three separate ones. When fully extended, the supports extend to give support:
When the workstation is being put away, the storage area rises, as shown here:
I feel that this feature is very beneficial to the user. Coming next – The Watering System, although it may take a few weeks to get back to this as other work keeps cropping up.