Friday, March 8, 2013

Concrete Hands

For a few months I've been involved in the production of folded PETG structures for the purpose of concrete castings. The project and research is accumulating as an installation under the Research Through Making grant, led by Maciej Kaczynski, and carried out by an esteemed group of TCAUP students. My involvement in the project is to expedite the digital construction of the 3D global form and the production of the to be folded 2D PETG pieces that compose the overall structure.

To expedite the digital workflow, I wrote a few python scripts within Rhino. The overall workflow starts with a desired surface that approximates the global form which subsequently is used to construct Rhino geometries and surfaces. Those surfaces are later unrolled and converted into line geometries that represent the cuts and creases that will go into the production of the to be folded 2D PETG pieces. The entire process from surface to 3D global form to 2D PETG pieces is automated from start to finish and with the press of a button.

The PETG is cut and creased using Zund knife cutter. The pieces are then folded and assembled with staples and rivets. Above is an example of a PETG casting structure and below is a sample concrete casting in result.

The installation for the Research Through Making grant is in production and will be unveiled later this week. The first picture in this post is the final concrete casting setting.  

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