Reconfigurable assemblies consist of a common set of parts that can be assembled into different forms for use in different situations. Designing these assemblies is a complex problem, since it requires a compatible decomposition of shapes with correspondence across forms, and a planning of well-matched joints to connect parts in each form. This paper presents computational methods as tools to assist the design and construction of reconfigurable assemblies, typically for furniture. There are three key contributions in this work. First, we present the compatible decomposition as a weakly-constrained dissection problem, and derive its solution based on a dynamic bipartite graph to construct parts across multiple forms; particularly, we optimize the parts reuse and preserve the geometric semantics. Second, we develop a joint connection graph to model the solution space of reconfigurable assemblies with part and joint compatibility across different forms. Third, we formulate the backward interlocking and multi-key interlocking models, with which we iteratively plan the joints consistently over multiple forms. We show the applicability of our approach by constructing reconfigurable furniture of various complexities, extend it with recursive connections to generate extensible and hierarchical structures, and fabricate a number of results using 3D printing, 2D laser cutting, and woodworking.
- Computational design
- Furniture assembly
- Mechanical interlocking
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design