Designing A Toilet Roll Holder

Everything needs to be designed, at one point or another. There are jobs for those who design kitchens, and stadiums, and interplanetary spacecraft. However, there are also jobs for those who design cutlery, hose fittings, and even toilet roll holders. [Eric Strebel] is here to share just such a story.

[Eric] covers the whole process from start to finish. In the beginning, a wide variety of concepts are drawn up and explored on paper. Various ideas are evaluated against each other and whittled down to a small handful. Then, cardboard models are created and the concepts further refined. This continues through several further phases until it gets down to the fun part of choosing colours and materials for the final product.

Watching the effects of cost and manufacturing process shape the finished item is instructive as to how the design process works in the real world. The toilet paper holder itself is an interesting unit, too – using adjustable magnetic detents to enable one-handed use, as well as including a cell phone holder.

We’ve seen [Eric]’s work before – such as his primer on the value of cardboard in design. Video after the break.



22 thoughts on “Designing A Toilet Roll Holder

      1. Remember that episode of The Simpsons when one of the reasons CPS took their kids away was toilet paper in an improper overhand fashion?

        Bollocks! That’s the way I hang mine, and ripping some off one handed is not a problem.

      2. How “the other way”? Do you mean like “paper to the front or to the wall”? How should that be more cat prove? There are only two reliable ways to make something cat prove: Give it a cover the cat can not remove or put it completely out of reach. The latter is quite useless in that case, because a roll in a height of 2m is useless when you sit on the bowl.

      3. But it seems not be a great problem anyway, also I often forget to close the toilet door firmly, my cats do not play with the paper. What I have to take great care, is to keep the door of my electronics working room closed. One of my cats thinks, small PCBs with dangling wires are HIS toys (often damaging it while playing with it). “No, these are my toys and as long as you do not know how to use a soldering iron correctly, keep your paws off!” But he is not very impressed. :-)

  1. I’m not saying he isn’t good at the designing bit, but my “being sold to” brain centre is lighting up like crazy in this video.
    Is this his style or more or less standard for industrial designing?
    Prob something I should be better at myself.

    1. Yes, a little. But your body is adjusted to the germs living inside you :-) But anyway, I am glad to have a wash basin at the toilet, so I can wash my hands before touching anything.

  2. As the roll is used, the magnetic torque will remain the same, but the distance to the paper torn off will decrease. This will increase the force on the paper, and will likely require adjustment as the roll is depleted to prevent ripping at every sheet perforation.
    TL;DR: You’ll have to adjust the resistance one or twice as you go through the roll. Meh.

    That said, I applaud him for working to improve on something we all take for granted.

  3. Wow gross, put your phone off before going to toilet and don’t touch it till you washed your hands, especially don’t give your phone to anyone else if you touched your phone in anywhere in between

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