In 2017 we learned about Dylan Gastel's clever design for a DIY backyard skating rink. Gastel's thoughtful system converted what used to be a challenging construction task into something that could literally be assembled by eight-year-olds, without using any tools and without having to drive stakes into the ground.
Four years later Gastel's company, EZ-ICE, has evolved the design even further. Users now have the option of adding rounded corners, arena-height sidewalls and nets to stop errant pucks.
I also like that the modular components mean you can expand the size of the rink next season by adding new pieces to what you've already got.
Look at how the system comes together, and I think you'll agree that this beats the pants off of trying to build a rink using lumber, stakes and power tools:
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I think Gastell's design is simple, brilliant, and ought be taught as a case study for ID programs. It's a perfect example of using materials economically while improving both the UX of assembly and the quality of the finished product.
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