Modeling a toothbrush / toiletries

In one of my studio classes, we are working on a project were we take a brand language of a high end car company (mine is Maybach) and design a set (5) of toiletries after it.

One of the most common toiletries is a tooth brush which will most likely be apart of the set.

We have to come up with research, sketches, sketch models, and final models. (the full process)

The final models are to be made with the appropiate material.

How in the world am I going to model the britols of a toothbrush?

Having made my fair share of toothbrush models i have a couple of different ways to solve it. It depends what level you are aiming for. A quick and dirty method is just reusing the head of an existing brush. Just find a suitable brush, cut the head of at the neck and glue it on to your own design, using a piece of wire drilled inn to the end of the neck and head as reinforcement. The head and neck can then be sanded to match your design.

For presentation models I have come up with a method that take a bit of work, but the result looks very close to the real thing. You will have to get a hold of actual bristels that are used for production. You should be able to get a hold of samples from 3M or DuPont.

The clue to it is to drill the bristle holes in the head all the way through (I usually use RP models for presentation, so doing it by hand is a little difficult) You have to sand and paint your brush before starting to insert the bristles. The clue to it is that you insert the bristles from the back of the head, with the brush laying on the table. You can then adjust the length of the bristles by making a jig that the bristles rest on the table. You then insert each bristle(or filament, as a single bristle straw is called) by hand into the holes. Pack them as tight as you can into bundles. When you have inserted all the bristles and adjust them to the right hight, you dab each bundle with superglue from the backside of the head. Use a quite thin flowing glue that hardens quickly. Use a sharp knife to cut the bristles off the back of the head. This should be easy, as the glue has hardened the bundles of bristles. Check that all the bristles still are attached and use more glue if necessary. Mask the bristles with tape, and sand and spackle the back of the head until smooth. Paint the back of the head with the same color as your brush.

The bristles may become a little stiff from the glue, but should look like the real thing.

Happy brushing and good luck!

wow… not my project, but im totally inspired.

If you’re on a time constraint, and you’re not going to install your own bristles, or the shape of your toothbrush head design is too far removed from whats on the shelf there is another solution…

For example; if you’ve designed your bristles in a cylinder shape, turn a solid cylinder piece on the lathe and paint it a different color, try an off-white, then glue the cylinder onto the model where the bristles volume would be located. It communicates the idea just fine.

This will work for any shape/size of the bristle area, just make it a solid 3d shape, paint it, and the idea should be understood… if you place the toothbrush in context and/or if the form communicates “toothbrush”.

However, I get lost in making complex models, I would personally opt for the DIY bristle option by mofex.

Thanks everyone for helping me out on this issue…

Mofex, do you know if I get the bristles online from 3M or DuPont? Or is there stores around that sell them? Is there a certain name for the right type?

Even though it seems like a bit more work, I think the models will come out exactly how I want them to, instead of settling with the certain type of brush head.

Thanks again


BTW- Who’s your professor?

rojas is my professor…

I saw that you graduated from SCAD… do you have any advice?

I think you will have to contact their sales department. They are usually helpfull when you tell them your a designer. The correct term would be toothbrush filaments. If you cant get hold of any, you could check out light colored paintbrushes or dish brushes. Just cut them off and reuse. They are a little thicker than toothbruh filaments, but might look OK. Havent tried this myself, just an idea!