The vacuum cleaner made me think…

Since I opened the vacuum cleaner it made me think: I have the impression that they are often thrown away even though the motor is still working properly. Reasons for getting rid of the vacuum cleaner can be manifold though: The vacuum is not as strong as it used to be in the beginning, model-specific bags are not available anymore, it does not close properly because a hinge broke, it smells funny, etc.

In any case, the result is a working, thrown away vacuum cleaner motor. So an idea struck me: What if I would design a DIY vacuum cleaner and make sure, that it is adaptable so any vacuum cleaner motor can fit in? Moreover it could also feature an adaptable hose mount, so the hose + Pipe & floorhead could also be sourced from a thrown away vacuum cleaner.

I got excited about the idea and started to search for similar projects. To my surprise I could only find Tom Lynch’s open source vacuum cleaner, who however had a different agenda with his project. His design is also mentioned in an interresting conference paper by James Augur et al. that discusses in which ways industrial design is currently constrained and how this could be changed to allow for more inclusive, holistic, and environmentally responsible futures.