How many times do you see a product design and think, “How could this possibly be manufactured at a reasonable cost?”

The ‘YellowClip’ Clothesline Clip designed by Paul Sandip is just one of those designs that brings up such questions. It’s curvy, it doesn’t rust, it’s available in a variety of colors and it looks like a tooling nightmare. Is it? How in the blazes do you think this simple design could be manufactured?

The Buzz

There’s been a lot of conversation about the #yellowclip going on in Twitter-land. It started out as discussion about the design, the price and the fact that it’s currently only a prototype, but the interest quickly turned to the tooling of the single-piece icon of cloth-hanging bliss.

On the LinkedIn ID Group, C. Sven Johnson has asked the question How is this seemingly simple product tooled?

Update: I’ve also posed the question on the SolidWorks Forum and is getting a lot of input from people knowledgeable in the area of Mold Design and Material properties.

The Hints

Here’s what Paul had to say when I asked him about how the clip would be manufactured.

Regarding my thoughts on how it will be manufactured…i would not like to disclose much details as it is lisenced to a manufacturer and we have signed a Non-disclosure agreement. The only clue is…it is definitely a two part mold.

The Clip is being sold for $20.00 ( currently on pre-sale for $4.00) at Moq7. Yes, $20 for a single clip. As mentioned above, it’s a prototype which will be manufactured if 10,000 are pre-ordered. Currently, only 13 have been sold. For a ‘simple’ part like Paul’s clip, this cost would typically be associated with low-runs or high material cost. The question is… How would this actually be tooled for manufacturing? Is it even possible?


Josh is founder and editor at, founder at Aimsift Inc., and co-founder of EvD Media. He is involved in engineering, design, visualization, the technology making it happen, and the content developed around it. He is a SolidWorks Certified Professional and excels at falling awkwardly.