Logo Tobias Gutmann Prototyping
Fail fast!
Fail fast!
Find out quickly what works for you
and your customer and what does not.

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The Founder

Tobias Gutmann

Tobias Gutmann

Physicist & Owner

Years of experience in prototype and product development. Knowledgable in design, mechanics, electronics and software. M.Sc. in Physics.

Contact Philosophy Portfolio

The focus of our business is the development of prototypes and finished products. We will guide you from the first idea to the finished prototype or even to a product ready for production.

Philosophy

A prototype is made to test an idea. For us it is important that you know as quickly as possible whether your idea works or not.
Therefore we rely on these four pillars to find out what you and your customer needs:

Design Thinking

Often an idea is quite refined, but sometimes it needs some more work to find out what to test with a prototype or what product a customer needs. Therefore we use the innovation method "Design Thinking" on a regular basis.

Mechanics and Design

The best way to communicate a product is through form and function. Therefore many projects have a mechanical or design part. Previously modeled at the computer, we fabricate functional or design prototypes with high speed and quality in our workshop.

Electronics

Sensors and actuators are needed to let prototypes and products interact with their environment. These are typically connected to printed circuit boards, which we design at the computer. Then we either manufacture them in our laboratory or order them through our supply chain.

Software

In the end software brings life to the prototypes. We are able to develop these on desktops, microcontrollers and smartphones. For complex SW projects we have access to a network of freelancers to support us.

All from one supplier.

Our philosophy is to be able to work on all aspects of your idea, which makes development faster and increases the quality of the end result.
We have demonstrated this already in past projects:

  The Projects

Past Projects

What we have done so far and are allowed to show - A selection.

 
Proglove "Mark" - Electronics
Proglove Mark - Electronics
Laser4DIY - Electronics
Laser4DIY - Electronics
 
Designit - Electronics
Designit - Electronics
Marble Machine X - Mechanics
Marble Machine X - Mechanics
 
Wematec Ionizer - Electronics & Mechanics
Wematec - Air-Ionizer
LED-Driver - Electronics & Mechanics
LED-Treiber - Electronics & Mechanics
×

Proglove "Mark" - product view
Proglove Mark
PCB Design - simplified
Platinendesign

Product Development Proglove

First Prototype for the Intel „Make it Wearable“ Challenge

First functional prototype for the Intel „Make it Wearable“ challenge for the Proglove founder team. For this prototype acceleration sensors, a display, stretch sensors, a RFID reader and as a brain the Intel Edison SoC were integratet into a glove. The result was the third place and a 100.000$ price.


Product Development "Mark"
First step in development was to create look and feel prototypes (hardware and software) for usage in an industrial environment. With progress in the development of the product and growing number of employees the focus of the work shifted more and more to PCB design and DFM (design for manufacturing). In doing so the set-up of a team of developers, extensive testing and supervision of the suppliers were the most important tasks. The result of the development process was a wearable barcode scanner which can process the information and send it over an industry compatible radio protocol to the corresponding computer. The number of devices used in production and logistics goes into the thousands.

More information about the startup: Proglove


Key Aspects

Mechanics

10%

Electronics

85%

Software

5%

Goal of Development

Finished product

Pre-series

First prototype


 


Laser4DIY Microchip Laser
Laser4DIY Microchip Laser
PCB Laser Driver
PCB Lasertreiber
PCB Temperature Controller
PCB Temperaturregler

Prototype Development Laser4DIY

Laser Driver & Temperature Controller
Development of a universal driver for laser diodes (for currents up to 80A) and a temperature controller for up to 4 channels for the cooling of laser diodes under an Open Source license. This project is supported by the "Open Photonik" initative of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). Goal of the project is to develop an open laser source which is capable of burning away copper from PCB material. This shall enable hobbyists and makers (e.g. Fablabs) to build their own laser devices for producing PCB prototypes. Therefore the development focuses on simple reproducability and easy sourcing of the components.
Laser4DIY

More informations about the project: Laser4DIY and on Heise.de

PCB Designs on Github: Temperature Controller und Laser Driver


Key Aspects

Mechanics

10%

Electronics

70%

Software

20%

Goal of Development

Finished product

Pre-series

First prototype


 


Touchbar - detailed view
Detailansicht Touchbar
Touchbar PCB - detailed view
Detailansicht Touchbar PCB
Projected buttons - detailed view
Detailansicht Schaltflächenprojektion

NextGen Designit

The task here was to develop a look and feel prototype of a new device class for the interaction between humans for a well known hardware manufacturer from Asia. The main input elements should be a LED stripe with integrated touch capabilities, the touchbar, and projected buttons, where the user can touch illuminated areas on the table surface. The UI/UX and housing design was done by the folks at Designit.

More information about Designit Munich: Designit


Touchbar
For both planned input devices there was no off-the-shelf solution, so a custom development was necessary. First prototypes based on Arduino were done. After an iteration with a 3D printed carrier and hand cut copper electrodes for the capacitive touch field, a PCB based on the MPR121 from NXP was designed, ordered, assembled and tested. This solution fullfilled all requirements regarding precision and responsiveness. Here you can see the evolution of the touch sensor from prototype board to PCB:

Evolution der Touchbar

Projected Buttons
To make a device control with different buttons directly on the table surface possible, experiments with Leap Motion and the XBOX kinect sensor were done. These were either to big or couldn't recognize the button presses consistently. At the end the solution have been infrared distance sensors by Sharp, which combined with a software algorithm could recognize the button presses very reliably. The buttons themselves were projected by a pico projector onto the table surface.
Software
To enable the communication between the single components and the software developed by Designit an Arduino was programmed to be the central communication hub. Its task was to forward the input data to the central computer and to control the LEDs on the touchbar.
Key Aspects

Mechanics

10%

Electronics

50%

Software

40%

Goal of Development

Finished product

Pre-series

First prototype


 


Marble Machine X - Rendering
Marble Machine X - Rendering
Finished parts
Gefertigte Teile
Crowned pulley - CAD
Laufrad - CAD Zeichnung
Torque limiter - CAD
Drehmomentbegrenzer - CAD Zeichnung

Marble Machine X - Mechanical Parts

For the band "Wintergatan" several mechanical parts were manufactured and partly also developed for the "Marble Machine X". This is the more durable sucessor of the music instrument "Marble Machine" which got some attention on Youtube:

More information about Wintergatan and the "Marble Machine": Youtube channel


Flywheel - Torque Limiter
The "Marble Machine" is driven by hand, but a built-in flywheel ensures constant rotational speed. In order not to destroy the machine in case of a blockade an adjustable torque limiter was designed, sketched in Fusion360 and manufactured at the CNC machine and lathe in-house.
Crowned pulley

A pulley for the belt tensioning system was manufactured at the lathe. A challenge at the lathe was the crowning of the pulley. Here you can see the CAD construction of the pulley:


Key Aspects

Mechanics

100%

Electronics

0%

Software

0%

Goal of Development

Finished product

Pre-series

First prototype


 


Air ionizer - overall view
Luftionisator - Gesamtansicht
High voltage generator
Hochspannungsgenerator
Ionisation Düse - detailed view
Detailansicht Ionisation Düse

Air Ionizer

For the company Wematec an air ionizing extension for the pressurized air supply in the cleanroom of the laser development section was developed. This is necessary to prevent buildup of electrostatic charge and therefore protect the sensitive semiconductor components. It is still in use today.

More information about the Wematec GmbH: Wematec


High Voltage Generation

To reliably generate the voltage necessary to ionize the air, a 700V Step-up module was used to power the high voltage cascade, which multiplies the voltage up to about 5kV. This voltage creates corona discharges at the tips of the electrodes and ionizes the air this way. For security reasons a high voltage resistor limits the possible current.


Mechanics

To encapsulate the electronics safely and to mount the device on the existing compressed air gun, a housing was designed and 3D printed. The air nozzle was turned on the lathe and the electrodes were soldered.


Key Aspects

Mechanics

50%

Electronics

50%

Software

0%

Goal of Development

Finished product

Pre-series

First prototype


 


First prototype
First prototype
Electronics - small batch series
Electronics - Kleinserie
Housings - small batch series
Gehäuse - Kleinserie

LED Driver

For a big pharmaceutical company a small series LED driver was developed for usage in a trade show booth. The driver should be capable of adressing up to 400 LEDs and also read out an ultrasonic distance sensor over USB for interactivity.


Electronics

The client wanted to use a "FaceCandy" module from Adafruit for the LEDs and an Arduino for the distance sensor. Therefore the remaining tasks were to choose the right components, the design of the power supply and the cabeling.


Mechanics

To safely store the electronics and to be able to connect and disconnect LEDs and sensors in a trade fair environment robust connectors and housings were used. The necessary cut-outs in the housings were done by laser and router. Eight of these LED drivers were built, tested and used on the booth.


Key Aspects

Mechanics

50%

Electronics

50%

Software

0%

Result of Development

Finished product

Small batch series

First prototype


 


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