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susy derkins
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50 + 138 points

Seat Creation And Insertion Phase 1: Schematics by susy derkins

January 2nd, 2008 11:52 PM

INSTRUCTIONS: "The quality of any urban environment can be measured by whether there are convenient, comfortable places for pedestrians to sit."

Design a way to implement new, comfortable forms of seating in the city, or to convert an uncomfortable seating arrangement into a comfortable one.
You may start from scratch, or use already-existing seating schematics (like "The Bench") as a base for your work. In this phase you do not need to implement your system, only design it and begin to determine how it could be implemented.

I love benches. In parks, in plazas, on the sidewalk.
I know that there are wonderful, almost indestructible benches made from recycled plastic. Sounds like a good idea, yes, but, at 600 dollars they are not particularly cheap and, also, I find them quite ugly. Or, if not ugly, at least too plain.
OK, OK, is a bench, you can sit on it and it works, but is not the one and only, the beautiful wrought iron Alameda bench.
That is a bench! Baroque yet elegant, equally nice when painted white, black or green, curvy, solid, comfortable, perfect.


Lennon liked them too.
And here in Mexico, they are even patriotic: the national symbol of the eagle with the serpent, the year, the name of the city, all that can get wrought into the back of the bench, without taking anything of its classy elegance.
These benches taste like ice cream and tricycles, music and kisses.
So, if we are going to implement new, comfortable forms of urban seating, we better get them to resemble the wrought iron Alameda bench.
They must be made from iron. Cheap iron. Iron that screams: lets give the city back to pedestrians, it had been taken over by cars for too long!
Junkyard iron! Transmission gears! What else?spaceball.gif

- smaller

car parts and the prototype bench

car parts and the prototype bench

Can you imagine how many gears from old and wrecked cars are produced every year? Finest solid iron, precision machined, intrincately designed and seldom exhibited. You just need some free time and an acetylene torch.

a proper bench, no less

a proper bench, no less

It is clearly inspired on the Alameda, no doubt: the armrests, the graceful back. And the trasmission tree is just the right lenght for the legs. This particular prototype has three pairs of legs, but it can be built with only two pairs, as the classic Alameda.

almost complete

almost complete

Some gears are missing from the seat section, but that´s easy to fix.

classy and comfortable

classy and comfortable

My lovely assistant shows how nice is to sit on a bench like this, even if there is currently a hole on the seat section. Voila!

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18 comment(s)

(no subject)
posted by anna one on January 3rd, 2008 12:43 AM


(no subject)
posted by Lincøln on January 3rd, 2008 12:52 AM


(no subject)
posted by JTony Loves Brains on January 3rd, 2008 1:29 AM

I so want to try one out... see what it's like to draw or paint wile sitting on one... beautiful!

(no subject)
posted by Jellybean of Thark on January 3rd, 2008 7:26 AM

I love Alameda benches.

I want to try it out by sitting on it and eating a sandwich.

que susto, pero que linda
posted by Fonne Tayne on January 3rd, 2008 7:29 AM

¿how many have been made?

(no subject)
posted by susy derkins on January 3rd, 2008 8:50 AM

At the time of this posting we are down to one. Well, um, almost one.
But the idea is, of course, to go epic.

(no subject)
posted by Lank on January 3rd, 2008 9:30 AM

I really hope you can do the second task in this series in the not-too-distant future.

(no subject)
posted by GYØ Ben on January 3rd, 2008 9:32 AM

Yes. YES.

(no subject)
posted by Tøm on January 3rd, 2008 9:33 AM

I agree, Shplanked.

(no subject)
posted by Sui Generis on January 3rd, 2008 9:53 AM

A fantastic fabrication! Glorious gears make a beautiful, and classy, seating apparatus. The view from one of these must be inspirational indeed.

(no subject)
posted by Charlie Fish on January 3rd, 2008 11:19 AM

You actually made this? How??!?!

Or you found it?

(no subject)
posted by Johnny Yuma on January 3rd, 2008 1:48 PM

I'm blown away. Question is, could it hold Americans?

(no subject)
posted by rongo rongo on January 3rd, 2008 5:48 PM

Wow, I never even considered sitting on gears.

thanks, everyone! It was the right task at the right time +1
posted by susy derkins on January 3rd, 2008 10:35 PM

Charlie: The prototype bench was made by one of the guys of the blacksmith workshop around the corner, using pieces from the transmission/automotive parts warehouse on the next block. The technique is plain ol´ oxygen-acetylene autogen solder.
The idea of using benches made from soldered gears and transmission trees as a viable way to implement comfortable seating in the city is all mine.
And if the talks go as expected, I will be placing some benches like this in public spaces in the not too distant future (and trying my hand at soldering too, man that´ll be fun!).

Johnny Yuma: Oh, they´d hold all kinds and shapes of people, just like regular benches. I guess some documentation on the subject would be good for the implementation stage. Not that I am thinking of exporting gear Alameda benches, either...

You've done a derkins...
posted by Charlie Fish on January 4th, 2008 1:38 AM

You commissioned it? Wasn't that expensive?

You are certainly living up to the word coined in your honour...

(no subject)
posted by Loki on January 4th, 2008 7:11 AM

Hard solder for the win!

(no subject)
posted by susy derkins on January 5th, 2008 8:11 PM

Oh, no, the bench is not mine! It was decided that it would be placed on the sidewalk close to the entrance to the two shops, which would mean good publicity to both. And from the prototype we are kickstarting things to get more benches made paid by church and/or municipality money.

(no subject)
posted by Jellybean of Thark on January 5th, 2008 8:30 PM

The fact that your local church and/or municipality might be subsidizing your tasking makes this completion even better. That's just amazing.