Binary Modular Cardboard Chair




  • This was the Binary Modular System Chair Design assignment for Ken Horii's Spatial Dynamics class, Fall 2017.

    The assignment was to develop a binary modular system capable of being replicated in multiples and assembled into a minimum of three significantly different configurations of a functional adult-sized chair. The modular set should consist of pairs of elements designed as joint modules and extender modules.



    Requirements/Constraints included
    -You may only use single ply (paper both sides) corrugated cardboard for your modules. 
    -At least one of your chair configurations must include a fully-functional backrest.
    -The chair must be adult-scale and able to withstand your static and dynamic weight in all configurations.
    -The seat surface in all of your configurations must be a minimum average of 8 inches off the floor. 
    -One of your three required modular chair configurations must be designed to be portable in a stable form to fit into a test box measuring 12”x16”x24”. 
    -You MAY NOT use adhesive to connect modules to each other or laminate multiple layers. 



  • The binary modular set consists of one connecter module (Left) and one extender module (Right).



    Based on the constraints, I planned two major objectives I wanted the chair to consist of:
    1. The chair has to be strong (has to be able to withstand dynamic and static weight of adult).
    2. The chair has to be comfortable (has to 'fit the body').

  • In order for these two  objectives to be fulfilled, I combined two structures: a triangle and a arch.

    The triangle, being one of the strongest structures coming from nature, was chosen in order for the module to have strength/withstand weight.
    The arch, consisting of curves, was chosen in order for the curved surface to fit in the curves of the body.




    Prototype 1


  • Prototype 2


  • Prototype 3

  • Prototype 4


  • Final Module
  • Going through the prototypes, the first few start out as the triangle and arch structure connected in one as the extender. However, for the final module, the triangle and arch are separated into two pieces each taking the role as a extender and connecter.



  • (Side View)
    Each module is layered with three of five sets for each triangular or arched shape. These 15 pieces are connected together with a square piece of cardboard.



  • The square piece connects not only the 15 pieces together, but also the connecter module and extender module. The square piece is layered twice.






    Replicating and assembling 6+ of these modules creates configurations of the following


    Configuration 1


  • Configuration 2


  • Configuration 3


  • Configuration 4


  • Configuration 5


  • Configuration 6


  • Configuration 7


  • Configuration 8


  • Configuration 9


  • Configuration 10


  • Configuration 11


  • Configuration 12


  • Configuration 13


  • Configuration 14 (Desk)


  • Configuration 15


  • Configuration 16


  • Configuration 17


  • Configuration 18


  • Configuration 19


  • Configuration 20


  • Configuration 21


  • Configuration 22


  • Configuration 23


  • Configuration 24


  • Configuration 25


  • Configuration 26


  • Configuration 27


  • Configuration 28


  • Configuration 29


  • Configuration 30


  • Configuration 31


  • Configuration 32


  • Configuration 33


  • Configuration 34


  • Configuration 35


  • Configuration 36


  • Configuration 37


  • Configuration 38


  • Configuration 39


  • Configuration 40




  • Each configuration is made only using the repetition of these three pieces of cardboard.





  • Thank You!