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General Electric

French Door Oven

Case Study

French Door Oven

The Problem

GE wanted to take the French door oven commonly found in commercial kitchens and bring it to the consumer platform. One stumbling block in their dissemination has been the mechanism that allows both doors to move simultaneously for one-handed operation. Many of those mechanisms have proven to be bulky, expensive, or cumbersome to assemble en masse, and lacking in the premium motion feel consumers expect.

The Solution

GE engaged Smithwise to develop a wide array of alternatives to the outdated mechanisms popular in current French door ovens.

Smithwise engineers collaborated with GE’s in-house industrial design and product development team to generate a dozen different mechanisms from the straightforward to the far-out.

Two were selected for more in-depth prototyping and development for their alignment with key evaluation criteria including airflow maintenance, cost, ease of assembly, and motion quality.

Together, the GE and Smithwise teams improved significantly upon current solutions, allowed for new features and functionality, and gave GE the ability to secure new intellectual property in an old field.

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