Custom Talks: ‘I think it’s true for any customizable product that the success of the idea rests upon finding balance’

In Customization by trinckle team

More and more, businesses are putting customization at the core of what they do. One such company is dilite, whose mission is to reimagine standardized everyday products to reflect the uniqueness of each customer. We talked to CEO, Thomas Gruber, about why customization is so important for dilite, deciding how and what to customize, and how paramate is helping them realize their innovative idea.

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So many of the objects we interact with on a daily basis are designed and manufactured as one-size-fits-all solutions. And, as most of us know one-size-fits-all either doesn’t get the job done right, or doesn’t suit our very individual needs and tastes. Customization is a word on the lips of many business decision-makers, and it is not too hard to understand why. Offering customization as a way to enhance a standard product, helps businesses answer a fundamental question: how do we deliver everyday products that everyone needs, while simultaneously creating opportunities for personal expression?

Some, like the team behind dilite, see the combination of 3D printing technology with software applications as the answer to this question. In the coming weeks, they will launch a crowd-funding campaign for their first product line: customizable lamps. We sat down with Thomas Gruber, CEO dilite, to talk about his passion for creating custom products, why custom will add value for businesses and consumers alike, and why dilite relies on 3D printing and our customization software, paramate, to make this business model a reality.

1. What potential applications of 3D printing do you see for your business?

3D printing processes have matured considerable in recent years, and this has opened up possibilities for businesses to offer their customers individualized products at an unprecedented level. Not too long ago, there were not many everyday products that could be individually designed. And, when it was possible, it was expensive.

Our intention with dilite is to use 3D printing to create customizable products with a reasonable price tag. Really 3D printing is at the heart of what we do, and it will enable us to deliver unique customer experiences.

2. What added value will customizable products generate for your customers?

The added value is there for consumers and manufacturers, like us. Customizable products allow us to build an automated process chain from the customer’s wish, to the shipping of the finished, printed product. As a result, the manual processing steps are minimized, and we can offer our products at lower prices. All this means that our customers get exactly what they want for less.

3. When selecting products or product lines for customization, what are the most important considerations?

When we were considering what kind of customizable products we wanted to create, we asked ourselves this question: which products do we find in every household in an increasingly similar design? We intentionally went looking for mass products, that we could give some new life and interest to, products with simple geometries that our clients could simply individualize to their tastes.

4. What is the most significant challenge you face in introducing customizable products?

I think it’s true for any customizable product that the success of the idea rests upon finding balance. You need to give your customers enough freedom and flexibility to express their particular design wishes, while guaranteeing sensible configuration.

In large part, we solved this dynamic by relying on trinckle’s customization software, paramate. The configurator allows customers to design and shape the product, but always within clearly defined limits.

5. How has paramate helped your business offer customizable 3D printed products?

paramate offers us the ideal platform to create our product concepts in collaboration with experts and our design team, while also generating an interface that enables simple configuration for our customers.

6. How does your company contribute to the 3D printing revolution?

From the very beginning, we have engaged with 3D printing. We are constantly testing new technologies to see how we can use them to our customers’ advantage. To that end we have done considerable work from the software and the manufacturing side.

On the software side, we have explored topics like topology optimization and lightweight construction extensively. Both represent topics that are of particular relevance when manufacturing with 3D printing. And, as I already mentioned, from the manufacturing side we strive to offer customizable alternatives to mass products.

We come from machine engineering, and we combine our engineering expertise, our extensive knowledge of the demands of industrial 3D printing on the manufactured components, and a bit of creativity to make something new. I hope that other businesses can look to our example for a bit of inspiration.

Want to learn more about dilite’s products and how our software optimizes the design process? Then visit their crowd-funding campaign site:

image source

“Image 1” courtesy of dilite. 

“Image 2” courtesy of dilite.

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