Surface lift adapted for today’s user
Uphill consists of an “U” construction made out of spring steel. This means that the lift can flex back and force to adapt to the users different heights without any moving parts that can break in the harsh environment. The spring steel construction is embedded in a softer plastic that can stretch along with the steel while it stays in a nice temperature in the outdoor environment.The colours determines the clients, maybe brand to the ski resort or like the example here, to enhance the experience in the kidz areas. Watch this on Vimeo!

Abstract

Today's T-bar lift looks almost the same as when it was launched in 1938, even though a lot has happened in the ski and mountain industries. New equipment has developed without any major adjustment to the lift. Snowboard, sit ski and downhill biking are just some examples of the evolution that demands new seating positions. It’s also very common for families to spend their holidays in the mountains nowadays.

These are users whit a lot of different needs, for example how to ride with different heights, different gears and different skill level.

My degree work has focused on developing a new surface lift that is adapted to the different needs of today’s users. A surface lift that makes the ride a nice experience that ends with a big smile and a lot of energy to spend on the way down.

Inspiration and Method

The most important tool for me during this project has been a close contact with the users, my collaboration partners and experts on different areas. They all have a huge experience that would take years for me to learn. It has been really important for me to know that the concept I was making was realistic and would work for the context it’s made for. A lot of the inspiration in this project has been coming from these people. Ideas have carefully been chosen and made into concepts from input that I got during the research. Mock-ups has also been really important for me, both in small and bigger sizes. One of the happiest moments was when I was trying out full sized mock-ups at the ski resort Bubergsgården. That was when I finally had found something that my users, my collaboration partner and I thought would work…

Result

The result is named Uphill and takes the users up the slope in an ergonomic and user-friendly way. Uphill consists of a “U” construction made out of spring steel. This means that the lift can flex back and adapt to the users´ different heights without any moving parts that can break in the harsh environment. The configuration considers terminal risk as well as indicates gripping areas. The seating has a twisting point that adapts to the user with the steepness of the slope. The shape is designed to distribute the pressure more evenly over a larger area for an ergonomic position. The hole in the middle of the seating enables it to run in hard wind and snowy conditions. The overall shape of Uphill is designed to give the user a friendlier feeling.