Bicycles still rule many of the Netherlands’ roads but skateboards are steadily growing in popularity, especially among students. Storing them while you’re out and about isn’t easy though.

Industrial Design Engineering student Wendel Koole decided to focus on this problem while he worked on his MSc project. His solution? The DeckPack, an innovative add-on that attaches to any backpack and can hold most skateboards and longboards. He came up with the concept while commuting back and forth to the TU Delft campus from his home in Den Haag.

“The main problem that I personally experienced was that I felt restricted by having to carry my skateboard,” Koole said. “When one hand is occupied by the skateboard, simple tasks that require two hands become annoying. Examples are doing groceries with a basket, opening the door with a key, or even as simple as taking a card from your wallet. A skateboard is not easy to put down for a minute since it rolls away or falls.”

The DeckPack’s final design allows users to attach a skateboard to their backpack and remove it in a quick and fluid way. It doesn’t require them to stop and take it off, which is a definite plus.

“The user holds the skateboard or longboard in a horizontal position and grabs the guiding belt from underneath,” Koole explained. “He or she can put tension on the guiding belt to create a ’track’ along which the skateboard can be guided to its locked position. The user snaps the guiding belt to the shoulder and locks the tail-side of the board behind the bottom part. To detach the skateboard it’s pulled out of the top and bottom part and the click-lock opens automatically as the board slides along the guiding belt.”

While designing the DeckPack, Koole sought insight and feedback from designers at a Delft-based studio and other skateboarders in addition to his advisers, lecturers A.L.M Minnoye and B. Ninaber van Eyben. He hopes that this project will help him realise his dream of starting his own company.

Koole, W.R., DeckPack, Product for the Skateboard Commuter, Supervisors: B. Ninaber van Eyben and A.L.M. Minnoye, Defence: April 8, 2016

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