Necessity is the mother of invention so goes the popular adage. And Richard Hewitt a graduate in product design from the Sheffield Hallam University has just proved it true with his innovative device – the Spincycle, a washing machine that washes, rinses and dries clothes when powered by pedaling an attached tricycle around. All set to be considered as god-send, the Spincycle is essentially meant for those who are used to the luxury of washing machines but somehow find themselves placed in areas with limited or no electricity.
The creative spark for designing this innovative Spincycle hit Richard when he was visiting a children’s orphanage at Burundi in Africa. Assigned the task of washing 30 loads of children’s clothes by hand was exhausting for Richard who was definitely not used to such back-breaking work. This in turn gave rise to the concept of a washing machine powered by mechanical energy generated via pedaling. Considering the scope of the innovation especially in under-developed and developing countries Richard’s logic made complete sense and he further fine-tuned his idea by fitting the device to the back of a tricycle.
After doing this, he loaded it with clothes, detergent and water for a washing cycle, the energy for which was provided by pedaling around. Post the 10-minute cycling excursion, the clothes though washed had soapiness all around as they were suspended in the soapy water. To rinse them, the device was drained and re-filled with fresh water for another ten minute rinsing cycle. After this, the same cycle when repeated once again albeit, in the absence of water helped dry the rinsed clothes.
The USP of the hence designed Spincycle is its capability to save not just time, energy as well as water but also the fact that if properly developed it even has the capacity of functioning as a micro-enterprise and thus in turn a money generating source for those from the under developed and developing countries. Currently in the phase of further refinement in terms of designing as well as aesthetic appeal, the Spincycle is now set to be exhibited at Creative Spark – an exhibition organized by Sheffield Hallam, Richard’s alma mater. Way to go Richard!