Sugatsune products are designed to a specification not to a look
They are exercises in engineering which have a beauty all of their own. However, what many designers like about Sugatsune products, in a kind of geekish way, is the way they look when you turn them over.
Take a hook like the EU-50. The design itself is novel. It is two pronged to distribute weight on a delicate hat say, and has a strong shaft that can support equipment in a process or scientific space. It’s also made from 316 surgical steel, so corrosion is never going to be an issue. The styling is futuristic with a complex three dimensional swept curve. Turn it over and you’ll discover why Sugatsune has such a reputation for excellence in manufacture, the castings are clean and unblemished and highly presentable.
It’s reassuring to know that even the parts that cannot be seen in use have the same attention lavished upon them as the front of the component. The NF-R64 spring loaded hook is made from zinc alloy with a silver finish. For many manufacturers it would be enough to coat the front of the piece. With the NF-R64 the finish is perfect from any angle, not because it needs to be but because in Sugatsune’s view it’s right that it should be.
The Spring action on the NF-R64 is ideal for transport applications where it tucks away when not required and emerges when the bottom of the hook is pushed into a shallow concavity. It’s a simple elegant design that is often chosen by designers for its look as much as for the practicalities of it’s design.
The DSI 3250 is a beautiful handle designed to be flush mounted into the end of a sliding door. It functions as well as a conventional handle but because it is completely flush it can be used in single and multiple sliding door installations. When installed in double doors the two handles form a circular motif where the two doors meet. It can be used from the side or end and is effortlessly stylish.
The styling of the PL Design caster is also rather interesting. It has a hubless design. A ball bearing race is mounted to the housing so there is no need for a hub so instead Sugatsune has installed a very pleasing negative space. The performance of the caster is, as you would expect, super smooth and ideal for furniture and mobile cabinetry in hotels and hospitals.
Styling is very much secondary to good design at Sugatsune but so often good design leads to excellent styling. Sometimes you have to sacrifice your design in order to get the functionality you require, not so with Sugatsune where design meets purpose.