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Crude Prototyping

Crude Prototyping

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Hey there, inventors! Are you tired of spending all your hard-earned cash on fancy prototypes that might not even work? Well, have no fear, because today we’re going to talk about the magic of crude prototyping.

Picture this: you’re sitting at home, brainstorming your latest invention. You’re convinced it’s going to change the world, but you don’t want to spend a fortune on developing it just yet. That’s where crude prototyping comes in.

Think of crude prototyping as your invention’s first draft. It’s the rough sketch before the masterpiece. And the best part? It’s cheap, fast, and, dare I say it, fun.

But what exactly is crude prototyping, you might ask? It’s simply creating quick and dirty versions of your invention using whatever materials you have lying around. And trust me, there’s nothing more satisfying than seeing your idea come to life, even if it’s made out of cardboard and duct tape.

Not only is crude prototyping a blast, but it can also save you a ton of time and money. By testing out your invention’s features early on, you can quickly figure out what works and what doesn’t. And if it doesn’t work, no biggie! You didn’t waste a fortune on a fancy prototype.

So, get ready to channel your inner MacGyver and join me on this journey of crude prototyping. I promise, it’s going to be a blast!

The Importance of Crude Prototyping

Okay, so you might be wondering why you should bother with crude prototyping. After all, why spend time making something that’s not even close to the real deal?

Well, my friend, let me tell you: crude prototyping is like a dress rehearsal for your invention. It’s a chance to try out different ideas, tweak features, and see what works before you spend a fortune on the real thing.

Plus, it’s just plain fun. There’s something incredibly satisfying about taking an idea from your head and turning it into a tangible object, even if it’s made out of pipe cleaners and paper clips.

But it’s not just about having a good time. Crude prototyping can save you a ton of time and money in the long run. Think about it: what if you spent thousands of dollars on a fancy prototype, only to find out that it didn’t work the way you wanted it to? That’s a lot of wasted time and money.

With crude prototyping, you can quickly and inexpensively test out your invention’s features and see what works and what doesn’t. You can make adjustments on the fly, without having to go back to the drawing board.

And let’s be real, sometimes the crude prototypes are even better than the real thing. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve made something out of cardboard and it ended up working better than the fancy version.

So, my fellow inventors, don’t underestimate the power of crude prototyping. It’s a chance to have fun, test out your ideas, and potentially save yourself a ton of time and money in the long run. So go ahead, grab some duct tape and get to prototyping!


crude prototype of drone watch

Hacking Methodology of Prototyping

Now, let’s dive a little deeper into the “hacking methodology” of crude prototyping. This approach involves taking apart existing products and recombining their features to create a crude prototype of your invention.

I’ll never forget the time my friend Sarah came up with the idea for a new kind of phone case. She wanted to create a case that not only protected your phone, but also held your credit cards and ID.

Instead of starting from scratch, Sarah decided to try out the hacking methodology. She went to the store and bought a few different phone cases, as well as some holders for credit cards. Then, she took them apart and started combining the best features of each one.

It wasn’t long before she had a crude prototype that worked surprisingly well. She was able to test out her invention without spending a lot of time or money on developing a fancy prototype.

This is the power of the hacking methodology. It allows you to leverage existing products and features to create something new and unique. And the best part? You don’t have to be a master inventor to do it.

All it takes is a little bit of creativity and resourcefulness. Look for products that have similar features to your invention and start playing around with them. Take them apart, recombine them, and see what you come up with.

Of course, there are some limitations to the hacking methodology. You might not be able to find products that perfectly match your invention, or you might need to make some modifications to get everything working together.

But even if your crude prototype isn’t perfect, it can still be a valuable tool for testing your idea and getting feedback from others.

So, if you’re feeling stuck on your invention, consider giving the hacking methodology a try. You might be surprised by what you can create with a few off-the-shelf products and some ingenuity.

This is my hack for a drone watch – combining this very weird Japanese watch toy, a small drone, and a few other ingredients!

Art Store Materials for Crude Prototyping

Now, you may be wondering what materials you can use for these crude prototypes. Well, let me tell you, a trip to your local art store can be a goldmine for materials.

You can grab some:

  • cardboard
  • paper
  • sellotape
  • superglue
  • styrofoam
  • plasticine
  • modeling clay
  • resin

and spend an afternoon making crude prototype after crude prototype. Trust me, it’s like playing with Legos but for inventors!

I remember when I was working on a new invention, and I needed a part that was not easily accessible in the market. I visited an art store and found some materials that helped me make a crude prototype, and it worked like a charm. It felt like magic, and I was able to prove my concept quickly.

The best part about using these materials is that they are cheap, fast, and you can get so much invaluable learning in such a short period of time. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on expensive fancy prototypes when you’re just starting.

So, head to your local art store and get your hands on some materials. Spend an afternoon building crude prototypes, testing your concept, and refining your ideas. Trust me; it will be a fun and valuable experience that you won’t regret.


And that’s a wrap on crude prototyping, folks! We’ve covered why it’s essential to spend time creating crude prototypes in the early stages of invention. We’ve also explored the hacking methodology of prototyping, where we take apart off-the-shelf products and combine them to create a crude approximation of our invention for testing. Finally, we’ve talked about the materials you can use from your local art store to create your crude prototypes.

Remember, crude prototyping is not about creating fancy, expensive prototypes. It’s about testing your invention quickly and cheaply to prove or disprove it before investing a lot of time and money into its development. Crude prototyping allows you to gain invaluable learning in a short period and have fun in the process. So, don’t be afraid to spend an afternoon playing with cardboard, paper, sellotape, superglue, styrofoam, modelling clay, and resin to create your crude prototypes.

In conclusion, crude prototyping is a fantastic way for inventors to test their ideas and bring them to life. It’s a low-cost, low-risk way to explore and validate your invention’s features and unique value proposition. So, get out there, try crude prototyping, and most importantly, have fun!



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About Rory Flanagan

I am the founder of The Pragmatic Penguin. I’m also an inventor and entrepreneur. And over the past seven years, I have been working to help fellow inventors to achieve inventing success.

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