Water Weighs All

Instead of using all that precious and energy-wasting metal in the construction of a scale, why not use water? That’s what the designer of this fabulous project thought, then he brought it to life – Water Scale, a scale that uses Archimedes’ Principle in a simple container to create just what he thought of in his mind.

The object that is to be weighed is placed ont he scale plate which then sinks into the water in proportion to its mass, overflowing the water which then moves up through channel under the water reservoir. The weight of the object is measured with water and the plastic bead in the channel. This scale can weigh objects up to 1000 grams, and is more economical and lighter than most electric and mechanical scales in the market.

Plus no electricity, no energy consumption – green.

Designer: Muzaffer Kocer & Ayca Guven

53 Comments

  • AEHS says:

    nice idea., impressive solution, congratulations

  • AEHS says:

    nice idea., impressive solution, congratulations

  • Erlandsen says:

    How do you adjust/calibrate for tare weight?
    Is the mass of the displaced water really 1000 grams?
    The tiny water column doesn’t look like it’s more
    than at most a tenth of that… Could the designer
    please explain the physics of this a bit further, as I don’t really see how this scale could measure as much as a whole kilogram, unless there are spring forces that counter the weight as well as gravity. Besides… the water pipe, is it open or closed? If it is open, how do you prevent evaporation? However, if the physics issues actually have been resolved it is an elegant idea/design.

    • Ayca Guven says:

      First of all, thanks for the critics, at least for the reasonable ones. This 'tiny column' as you described, is not 'tiny' actually. There is a place for water at the bottom that you couldn't see from side section. It is normal not to understand some details from there, but if you are interested we will show more detailed images in this web site very soon. http://www.muzafferkocer.com/
      For the question of evoporation I'm sure you are kidding me ! Of course it is a closed pipe Erlandsen! Even if there is not evoporation, all about the archimedes principle is about the pressure, how can we make stabile pressure in an open pipe?
      Whatever. thanks again..

  • tweakie says:

    Excellent design work.

  • James says:

    Someone doing a new nice looking design for scales is a novel idea and a welcome one. I think from the description though that it's making out like scales are only electronic. I have scales in my house that are donkey's years old that have never needed power to work. I think there'd be a lot of problems with this and scales are not something people display in their kitchens on a permanent basis. Adjusting for the weight of the bowls you place on top, accuracy and anything involving water is a potential issue for things to go wrong in the long term. The design is lovely as a concept but I don't feel that this could ever really work in real life cooking scenarios.

  • tweakie says:

    Excellent design work.

  • James says:

    Someone doing a new nice looking design for scales is a novel idea and a welcome one. I think from the description though that it's making out like scales are only electronic. I have scales in my house that are donkey's years old that have never needed power to work. I think there'd be a lot of problems with this and scales are not something people display in their kitchens on a permanent basis. Adjusting for the weight of the bowls you place on top, accuracy and anything involving water is a potential issue for things to go wrong in the long term. The design is lovely as a concept but I don't feel that this could ever really work in real life cooking scenarios.

  • Muzaffer Kocer says:

    as you said, you have a stupid scale. This is smart one 🙂

    See you!

  • Muzaffer Kocer says:

    as you said, you have a stupid scale. This is smart one 🙂

    See you!

  • Ayca Guven says:

    James, I am talking to you. Thanks for the critics. First of all, I have to add the information that; WaterScale is a CONCEPT project which held on for a local competition in Turkey and ranked first prize. Also, our project was exhibited at Ambiente 2010 ,now with some manufacturers we are trying to produce it. Like all innovative ideas at history, there will be problems. But it is a normal process, if you consider your type of 'spring scales' has not changed from 18th century!
    Besides, your scale had already 'manufactured' , so you don't have to THINK about the manufacturing process! But we have responsibilities to think our foot prints on planet as so called 'good' designers, so we tried to make WaterScale as simple as possible from its form to its working principle!
    I hope you get the idea. http://www.core77.com/gallery/home-and-housewares

  • Fatih Baltas says:

    Less is more!!
    Clever and very simple design! Great!

  • Fatih Baltas says:

    Less is more!!
    Clever and very simple design! Great!

  • James says:

    Well thank you for your response and it's good to know you take other designers views on board and don't just get defensive, as a lot of designers can do that and it's very counter productive. I know it's a concept, that's why I said it's a very nice concept. It's not my type of spring scales, I didn't invent them. There's probably a reason though why the design hasn't really changed since the 18th century; it works. I totally understand about thinking about the eco basis on producing new products as I think the same way when I do my own designs. Oh I get the idea, I understood the idea as soon as I saw it. I, like the other person with their comments were just outlining some of the problems that may occur if used on a daily basis. I hope you get to produce it fully and see how it works in the kitchen, that'd be great.

  • James says:

    Well thank you for your response and it's good to know you take other designers views on board and don't just get defensive, as a lot of designers can do that and it's very counter productive. I know it's a concept, that's why I said it's a very nice concept. It's not my type of spring scales, I didn't invent them. There's probably a reason though why the design hasn't really changed since the 18th century; it works. I totally understand about thinking about the eco basis on producing new products as I think the same way when I do my own designs. Oh I get the idea, I understood the idea as soon as I saw it. I, like the other person with their comments were just outlining some of the problems that may occur if used on a daily basis. I hope you get to produce it fully and see how it works in the kitchen, that'd be great.

  • This could never work with a closed system, you would have to let air in and out of the system at some point, otherwise you’d go to weigh something and it would sit there and not push any water because it would be blocked by the air pressure. You’ve in essence created a pump with no outlet.

    Imagine if you go and take a bike pump and completely seal off the end. What happens when you push down on the lever? It resists… it does not displace air. That is essentially what you created, except the ‘lever’ is the bowl, and the blocked end of the tube is your ‘weighing system’, while the air is the water that travels inside.

    All of Archimedes’ principles are based on open air conditions, alleviating most of the headaches that would arise from capillary action. As soon as this is closed, the functions do not work.

    For your system to actually work it would have to let air in and out of the system, and then of course it would be prone to leaks and very much have to worry about evaporation, as now, air is entering and leaving the system.

    Erlandsen at the top made a very good point, and you dismissed him without actually understanding the physics involved. This system would require to be calibrated every time you need to use it, because the water levels would differ due to evaporation over time. And I only concluded this after going to your site and seeing the section.

    If you doubt me, cut a bike pump in half, and compare the sections.

    I really liked the concept but the physics just don’t work as you would like them to.

  • sylvia says:

    obviously people have long ignored the wise of our ancestor, and this one is really inspiring when all the products are trying to be more "ecletric smart".

  • sylvia says:

    obviously people have long ignored the wise of our ancestor, and this one is really inspiring when all the products are trying to be more “ecletric smart”.

  • sylvia says:

    obviously people have long ignored the wise of our ancestor, and this one is really inspiring when all the products are trying to be more “ecletric smart”.

  • In good company says:

    So looking at all the comments, it seems like the designer although thinking it's a smart eco friendly idea and defending it to the best of his / her ability and dismissing others critiques without thought, has ignored some basic physics. The fact seems to be here that it's a nice render, but in the real world it wouldn't work as a product.

    That this so called 'smart' scale opposed to the 'stupid' scale he mentioned that have been around for a few centuries isn't as smart as he thinks as the physics teacher just proved that it wouldn't work at all as it and even produces more problems that first thought.

    I think James knew what he was saying after he got bashed when he said he'd love to see it produced to see it working in the kitchen as he knew full well it wouldn't. We all get the idea that this is a concept and credit to you, it is a nice one. But as the designer has said they are trying to put it into production, surely then they will finally realise that 'stupid' scales aren't so stupid as they've been around for such a long time for the simple reason that they clearly work and have also always been eco friendly!

    As someone who has worked on design awards, I've been shown that time and time again, boasting about winning an award for something doesn't mean a whole lot. I commend the idea of using basic ideas rather than more high-tech electronic ones but simply, you can't improve on something that already works perfectly as it is. I took a look at the other designs on their website, they are a lovely rendering company but as ideas go, perhaps re-design the spring scale system so it looks more desirable so you don't have to worry about the mechanics and physics of it actually working. As I say, like a lot of designs on here, a great idea in a world where the laws of physics don't apply. Nice renderings though, I wonder what program they used.

  • Sam says:

    You can design the best product in the world, Ayca, however if you came to pitch the idea to an investor and you reacted in the way you have to the readers who have been kind enough to take the time to comment on your work – you would have very little success. I have many many years of experience on this, coming from both site, both presenting and being presented to.

  • In good company says:

    So looking at all the comments, it seems like the designer although thinking it's a smart eco friendly idea and defending it to the best of his / her ability and dismissing others critiques without thought, has ignored some basic physics. The fact seems to be here that it's a nice render, but in the real world it wouldn't work as a product.

    That this so called 'smart' scale opposed to the 'stupid' scale he mentioned that have been around for a few centuries isn't as smart as he thinks as the physics teacher just proved that it wouldn't work at all as it and even produces more problems that first thought.

    I think James knew what he was saying after he got bashed when he said he'd love to see it produced to see it working in the kitchen as he knew full well it wouldn't. We all get the idea that this is a concept and credit to you, it is a nice one. But as the designer has said they are trying to put it into production, surely then they will finally realise that 'stupid' scales aren't so stupid as they've been around for such a long time for the simple reason that they clearly work and have also always been eco friendly!

    As someone who has worked on design awards, I've been shown that time and time again, boasting about winning an award for something doesn't mean a whole lot. I commend the idea of using basic ideas rather than more high-tech electronic ones but simply, you can't improve on something that already works perfectly as it is. I took a look at the other designs on their website, they are a lovely rendering company but as ideas go, perhaps re-design the spring scale system so it looks more desirable so you don't have to worry about the mechanics and physics of it actually working. As I say, like a lot of designs on here, a great idea in a world where the laws of physics don't apply. Nice renderings though, I wonder what program they used.

  • Sam says:

    You can design the best product in the world, Ayca, however if you came to pitch the idea to an investor and you reacted in the way you have to the readers who have been kind enough to take the time to comment on your work – you would have very little success. I have many many years of experience on this, coming from both site, both presenting and being presented to.

  • Laura Klaus says:

    come onn! this is really a brillant idea ! hey guys just ignore about the comments.
    I appreciate your worries about working but all products does not have to produce at all.
    is this a designer or engineer blog? lovely concept

    • Physics Teacher says:

      How can you ignore the comments? You’re blogging your ideas specifically to get comments and get noticed!

      It’s a really nice design, I admit, and it looks quite sexy, but when you say that it will work based on simple physics, especially Archimedes’ principles, and it really doesn’t… you’re just asking for ridicule. I did not just say “IT WONT WORK” and leave, I made suggestions as to how it could work, though it creates a lot of other problems. They’re intelligent designers, I’m sure if they use their brains they could figure something out.

      It is a designer blog for sure, but if you use physics, and claim your work as functional, while it truly isn’t, you’re no longer a designer… you’re either mistaken, delusional or a liar.

      I’d like to think these designers are just simply mistaken. But kudos to them if they can fool people into developing a non-working product. Seriously.

  • Laura Klaus says:

    come onn! this is really a brillant idea ! hey guys just ignore about the comments.
    I appreciate your worries about working but all products does not have to produce at all.
    is this a designer or engineer blog? lovely concept

  • Physics Teacher says:

    How can you ignore the comments? You’re blogging your ideas specifically to get comments and get noticed!

    It’s a really nice design, I admit, and it looks quite sexy, but when you say that it will work based on simple physics, especially Archimedes’ principles, and it really doesn’t… you’re just asking for ridicule. I did not just say “IT WONT WORK” and leave, I made suggestions as to how it could work, though it creates a lot of other problems. They’re intelligent designers, I’m sure if they use their brains they could figure something out.

    It is a designer blog for sure, but if you use physics, and claim your work as functional, while it truly isn’t, you’re no longer a designer… you’re either mistaken, delusional or a liar.

    I’d like to think these designers are just simply mistaken. But kudos to them if they can fool people into developing a non-working product. Seriously.

  • In good company says:

    I was surprised by the reactions from the designer as well. As a designer myself, I understand that you can't be too precious with your work and that things will need to change for it to be a workable idea in the real world. Not everything is perfect first time round, so to respond in the rude defensive manner Ayca has to people's simple queries on it which weren't at all rude shows that maybe they're in the wrong business. I've had designs ripped into and it can be disheartening but for something like this, if it wouldn't work then that's the end of it, you either change it or fail.

    This is a design website yes, but product design has to work. Otherwise I could just come up with a flying house in the clouds with robot monkey minions, but there'd be no point. The whole idea in product design is that if it's good enough, you get it made. I don't know if you're a designer or not Laura, but form AND function are equally as important. That is why people have given genuine thoughts about the faults this design has and could have if built. No one has said it's a rubbish design, it's a lovely idea. Ayca has clearly just taken people's concerns about it to heart rather than taking them on board. Sam is right, investors would have the same concerns and with the attitude being shown, they wouldn't get very far. I'd expect that from college students, not professionals.

  • In good company says:

    I was surprised by the reactions from the designer as well. As a designer myself, I understand that you can't be too precious with your work and that things will need to change for it to be a workable idea in the real world. Not everything is perfect first time round, so to respond in the rude defensive manner Ayca has to people's simple queries on it which weren't at all rude shows that maybe they're in the wrong business. I've had designs ripped into and it can be disheartening but for something like this, if it wouldn't work then that's the end of it, you either change it or fail.

    This is a design website yes, but product design has to work. Otherwise I could just come up with a flying house in the clouds with robot monkey minions, but there'd be no point. The whole idea in product design is that if it's good enough, you get it made. I don't know if you're a designer or not Laura, but form AND function are equally as important. That is why people have given genuine thoughts about the faults this design has and could have if built. No one has said it's a rubbish design, it's a lovely idea. Ayca has clearly just taken people's concerns about it to heart rather than taking them on board. Sam is right, investors would have the same concerns and with the attitude being shown, they wouldn't get very far. I'd expect that from college students, not professionals.

  • Laura Klaus says:

    who are you physics teacher and in good company ? if you are professionals give me your names first, then I will reply your questions. And is this a conincidence to write in same minute?

    • Physics Teacher says:

      Why does it matter who we are? Take on our critiques as just that, nothing more, nothing less. The coincidence? What you think we’re the same person? Check the IPs from which we post from. That should verify any of your concerns, though it’s unclear what they really are.

      My name is Santa Klaus. You can look me up, I’m renown worldwide 😉

      You’ll only respond if we’re professionals…? Really? How sad. That means you can’t argue on the virtue and merits of words and ideas alone. So what’s the point then?

  • Laura Klaus says:

    who are you physics teacher and in good company ? if you are professionals give me your names first, then I will reply your questions. And is this a conincidence to write in same minute?

  • In good company says:

    Who am I? How do I even answer that, giving you my actual name means nothing and it will give you no more knowledge of me. I have no idea how old you actually are but as far as designing goes, I do know what I'm talking about. Yes, I'm a professional designer and I didn't ask you any questions to answer. I haven't got a clue about the ins and outs of physics so I couldn't comment….hence me being a designer and not a physics teacher! I didn't even realise about the thing being closed off and the pressure not being able to work until the physics guy wrote about it. Just because we happen to agree that this wouldn't work and the designer is being rude to people who say it wouldn't, doesn't mean we're the same person. I've not been rude to anyone and if they want to produce this and sell it to people then good on them. I'd like to see what happens.

  • In good company says:

    Who am I? How do I even answer that, giving you my actual name means nothing and it will give you no more knowledge of me. I have no idea how old you actually are but as far as designing goes, I do know what I'm talking about. Yes, I'm a professional designer and I didn't ask you any questions to answer. I haven't got a clue about the ins and outs of physics so I couldn't comment….hence me being a designer and not a physics teacher! I didn't even realise about the thing being closed off and the pressure not being able to work until the physics guy wrote about it. Just because we happen to agree that this wouldn't work and the designer is being rude to people who say it wouldn't, doesn't mean we're the same person. I've not been rude to anyone and if they want to produce this and sell it to people then good on them. I'd like to see what happens.

  • whysooffended says:

    You don't even have to be a physician (I always sucked at physics) to understand that it can't work if it's a totally closed system. Why get so offended and attack people that are making funded, polite and useful comments?

  • whysooffended says:

    You don't even have to be a physician (I always sucked at physics) to understand that it can't work if it's a totally closed system. Why get so offended and attack people that are making funded, polite and useful comments?

  • Ayca& Muzaffer says:

    Thank you for your efforts and time to comment on our project. Of course we will consider every critic that is written here. Thank you both…

  • Ayca& Muzaffer says:

    Thank you for your efforts and time to comment on our project. Of course we will consider every critic that is written here. Thank you both…

  • Narain says:

    I really appreciate the ‘thought’ behind the design and I am sure taking the comments of science knowing readers with respect, and tinkering around a bit, you are on to a good design: clean, green and so elegant. For that both Ayca and Muzaffer deserve our sincere appreciation

  • higrm says:

    I'm not sure you need an open ended system to get this to work. If you sealed the open end with an expandable rubber seal, the air above the water could escape into the expanding space of the balloon. But then the altitude of the scale would also need to be accounted for, as the pressure also impacts this kind of system. Alternatively, a vacuum above the water could perhaps allow the water fill the empty portion of the sealed tube.

    What I see as one problem is the claim that this is lighter than conventional electronic scales. My electric scale doesn't feel like it ways more than a kilo, but I can measure up to 2kg with it. Archimedes principle is that 1 kilo of stuff is balanced by one kilo of water, (though if it were closed by a rubber diaphragm you could include that force in your scale factor, but then we are back to a kind of spring system.) To balance a kilo, you need a kilo of water. Now, if the area of the plunger that goes into the water it 10cm2, to balance 1 kilo, you would need to displace the plunger 1 meter. Even if you wanted to weigh 100 grams of flour, you would need the balance to descend 10 cm to displace enough water to balance the flour.

    The more technically difficult problem to solve is the seal at the base of the weigh platter, the plunger. You would need to have a tight seal to avoid evaporation, but this will generate friction which will impact your readings. The expansion and contraction of the construction materials as the temperature changes from summer to winter, would also challenge the seal effectiveness and the friction force the seal causes.

    Needing to work in the kitchen, you have to assume the space below the platter would get dirty with flour/salt/sugar/etc. This too would effect the physics of the scale.

    Lastly, the tare function is a must for any kitchen scale.

  • Narain says:

    I really appreciate the ‘thought’ behind the design and I am sure taking the comments of science knowing readers with respect, and tinkering around a bit, you are on to a good design: clean, green and so elegant. For that both Ayca and Muzaffer deserve our sincere appreciation

  • Physics Teacher says:

    Why does it matter who we are? Take on our critiques as just that, nothing more, nothing less. The coincidence? What you think we’re the same person? Check the IPs from which we post from. That should verify any of your concerns, though it’s unclear what they really are.

    My name is Santa Klaus. You can look me up, I’m renown worldwide 😉

    You’ll only respond if we’re professionals…? Really? How sad. That means you can’t argue on the virtue and merits of words and ideas alone. So what’s the point then?

  • Fei says:

    For me, my pet peeve is the labeling everything as 'green'. As a product designer myself, I'm horrified to see nearly every new idea/concept/product being touted as 'green'. While I support the expression and exploration of new ideas and concepts, I feel we should be less heavy handed when claiming our ideas/designs are green. It is our responsibility as designers not to mislead and miseducate consumers regarding sustainability and green-design.

    In this case, I just don't see how the creation & manufacture of a completely new type of scale more 'green' compared to an old spring scale that is already pretty perfect functionally? Also this project doesn't seem to explain much on how this concept is 'greener' than the original.

Comments are closed.