uH bench - open source public bench
Get from a standard (Epal-Eur) pallet to a public bench in just a couple easy steps. The idea came while thinking about urban hacking or how to reclaim public space with easy to find material and tools in urban areas.
This project is totally free (as in freedom) and follows the principles of OSHW (Open Source Hardware). The first design, released in 2012, was published under The Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 license. The actual version (v1.5) is now under the Free Art License 1.3
For a period of 2 years, tree benches stayed successively in front of my house, but they disappeared one after the other. Some of my neighbors encouraged me to organize a "public bench fabrication day", which we did on the 15th of April 2012. Around 12 benches were created that day and placed along the street. Some benches were decorated using pyrography.
Since this first experience, many workshops have happened in Belgium, France, Spain, etc. reaching different crowds and allowing to test the design in different situations.
Here is a short presentation of the project at the Libre Graphics Meeting in Madrid.
Collecting knowledge and bug reports from all these experiences, a new version (v1.5) has been released on may 2015, incorporating modifications and improvements in the overall design process. The step by step has been corrected. Reinforcements have been added to the legs of the bench and the design files are now 100% vector files.
Download the design (A3 format)
Since this project is open source (or libre object), the source files are accessible here. You are encouraged to copy, share and modify the design under the terms and conditions of the Free Art License.
- 23 June 2012: Benches for the Brigittines’ garden [fr] commissioned by Ateliers populaires
- 20 November 2012: Open source bench workshop for @Bruxitizen festival [fr]
- 9 April 2013: #OSHW furniture for the Libre Graphics Meeting 2013 commissioned by Medialab Prado
- 12 June 2013: #uHbench performance at LOOP #5 Recyclart
- 7 July 2013: Libre Software Meeting 2014 in Brussels
- 12 June 2014: Workshop for the 5 years anniversary of Mundo-B [fr]
- 18-28 June 2015 Workshop and exhibition at Constant VZW