I have been raising a small water jug which I intend to make into a set with two glasses over the next few weeks.
I used my 3D printed brass hammer to do most of the raising. I wanted to take a similar from to a traditional whisky tumbler only with a small spout.
I finished off the piece with my 3D printed steel texturing hammer which gave an interesting finish.
The last thing I did was hammer in the spout. I used the edge of a hammer to do this. I still have some finishing to do. I’m not entirely happy with the shape around the middle and around the rim.
I feel I may need to make a wooden stake to give me the right shape.
I am planning on 3D printing a base for it to stand as well as a matching handle.
This week I have started to design my cutlery in CAD. I have been thinking about this for a long while and trying to decide weather to hand forge them with my 3D printed hammer or press them. As I have time restraints on the build I decided that pressing them would cut down time in production of a large quantity.
I have played around with shapes and forms and decided to go for something simple but with a twist in the form. The CAD models have taken about 3-4 days of trying to come up with the best forms. I’m the end I used a combination of t-splines and surface modelling. Although the surface modelling took a lot longer I got better results.
I should get the press mold back next week to try the spoon as a test. Then I can make any tweeks I need to make to the design of the mould fore the rest or the range.
I had a very exciting few days in the workshop testing my hammer. One thing that I didn’t realised was that the handle was too big to grip properly. So I went to the wood workshop and got it sanded down on the belt sander.
Sandra Wilson then gave me a quick afternoon master class in Dutch Raising. Dutch raising differs from the more well known technique of angle raising in that you hammer from the inside of your piece out. This creates a wave in the metal as you push the metal round. After each round you calque the edges and the re-anneal.
The second day I continued the piece and go to the planishing stage. I used my 3D printed steel planishing hammer. I also used the wrong steak at one point which put dints into the bottom of the bowl. I actually quite liked this so I ran with it.
I wanted to finish the bowl well and in an interesting way. I had some copper foil which I wanted to use for the inside of the bowl. I tried a sample of copper on copper kuem-boo but this didn’t work because copper doesn’t fuse. the samples just flaked off and they also changed to a more pastel colour.
I decided then to leaf the inside using adhesive. The outside of the bowl I finished with platinol and I burnished the top edge to a shine.
After going through many CAD model designs for the stool. I decided to have a go at constructing a stool thought 3D printing plastic joins that would hold the structure in place whilst welding. I ran into a few problems very quickly in the construction of the base. After welding most of the base together I realised that the steel had warped. this could have been due to heat expansion.
There were also parts of the design that were too close together and difficult to impossible to weld.
After spending a few weeks on this I decided to go back to the drawing board and simplify the design. I drew many other models that gradually became more simple. I still wasn’t entirely happy with the construction and felt what I was trying to achieve was far too complex and may not end up with a good result.
After discussion with Jon Christie about furniture he suggested that a simple three lagged stool is the most stable stool you can have. As the stool is for my workshop I felt it was an important design idea. I then spent a few more CAD models perfecting just one element that would be 3D printed to hold together my stool.
The piece can be screwed into the seat from the middle and the three legs can be slotted in. I am now in the process of 3D printing a prototype to test the element.
One of the main tools I need in my kitchen would be knives. This is the second knife I worked on. For this I designed the knife in CAD and 3D printed the blade in steel. The cost of a solid knife was far too expensive to justify 3D printing, so I decided to cut out most of the weight from the middle of the knife.
I then used algorithms in grasshopper to put back in place a structure to give more strength to the piece. Using grasshopper allowed me to play with the structure until I found an arrangement I was happy with. This was great in this particular case as if I had drawn this in rhino alone I would have only had the option I had drawn and it would have been far more difficult to change.
The knife cost £34.15 to print from Shapeways.
The first job I had was to sharpen the blade. I didn’t want to temper the steel so I avoided using a machine to grind the edges. At first I used a file which took off most of the edge. I was then given a sharpening stone from a friend which was far easier for the job and took very little time.
The next job I had was to make the handle. I wanted a contrast in the piece between handmade and CAD build work as I felt this would add part of my soul into the work more with combining the handmade element.
I cut a piece of metal to act as a stopper at the end of the handle. This slipped down to join between the handle and the blade to make the piece look a bit neater. I then made the handle using a piece of exotic hard wood called black plamera. I cut the wood in half and cut out the shape of the handle. In the centre of the piece I placed some dark blue acrylic sandwiched between light gathering plastic so that when you hold it up to the light you can see through the piece.
After gluing the handle together with epoxy resin I glued two brass rods though the handle to secure.
I then filed the handle into shape and sanded down to a high finish. I used Danish oil to finish the wood to a high polish.
Over the last month or so I have been working on design algorithms using Grasshopper in Rhino 3D. I decided to apply this fist to the stool I will need for my jewellery bench in the workshop. The reason I chose to apply this to the stool is that I currently have a Pakistani rushty stool which is the perfect size and shape for my workbench. So I decided to use this as the size and shape that I would use in rhino and then allow the computer algorithms to design the rest of the stool.
It has taken quite a long time and different models perfect the final design. I found that some of the T-splines wouldn’t Boolean union which meant I had to delete some elements. I also had problems with some splines unioning but then the model had no volume. To get around this I had to keep checking the volume and saving regularly to find and delete the bad splines.
I have 3D printed a small model of the stool from my home printer. Because the size of the university computer is about 20cm I have split the stool into eight segments that will all be printed separately.
From the model I printed I realised that the base of the model would be too thick, so to cut down on materials I have cut the larger model down to 5mm thick at the base.
The stool is now getting printed so I will be looking forwards to seeing the result.
Last week my handle for the raising hammer I made in Hungary was CNC milled in birch wood. It had taken quite a lot of time because previously it had been milled in oak. When I spoke to the wood technician he said that the grain of the wood was at an angle and that this would split when used. It brought up a very interesting conversation about the need for craftsmen and traditional crafts skills in the field of modern technologies. Not all items made using modern technologies will work or be better than something handcrafted but that it is the knowledge of both that are needed to apply ideas.
I glued the handle together in the workshop with wood glue and clamped together for around an hour.
When the handle was taken off the milling machine it had supports on the sides, I cut these off with a saw. I then filed and sanded the handle and fixed the hammer head in using epoxy resin.
I am now using Danish oil on the handle every day for the next week. I still have to drill a hole through both the handle and the head to fix a rod through.
Over the last few weeks I have been making a lot of the textiles for the house. I spent a day a few weeks ago learning some new patterns and experimenting.
After trying about 4-5 new designs I decided I would start to make a curtain for the container windows. I went with a very neutral cream colour as I want the main features to be both the view from the windows and the interior.
I have also started making some cushion covers for the living room. I have decided to go with green and cream as a colour theme to reflect the surrounding forest area. I have run with the pleated pattern idea as it is a fairly simple yet effective design.
After crocheting half of one of the covers my crochet needle snapped. I have been using this since November so it wasn’t a bad life span for a piece of 3D printed plastic. I am currently in the process of printing off another one which will take an hour to print. This is much quicker and cheaper than getting the bus to town or ordering one online.
After about 20mins use the hook I printed in low quality broke. I was able to see viably the strands of plastic poking out of the break like frayed string. I then re-printed the hook in high quality which took 2 hours 20mins to print.
Over the last few months I have been working towards finding and securing a plot of land for my house. I have been speaking with the Falkland Estate about the possibility of building the house on a site next to a barn on an old farm. The plot is beautiful, it is on a slope surrounded by forest. There is a waterfall nearby and a stunning mountain.
I have been playing around with designs of the shipping containers for about six months. Last weekend my father came up to visit and he drew up the architectural plans for submission to planning permission.
I am really happy with the design. It is exactly as I had imagined it. My father also came up with some good ideas for the arrangement of stairs and other things that I wouldn’t have the experience to design.
The house consists of a porch area on the ground floor. The kitchen is in the centre of the building. To the right is a jewellery workshop separated from the house by a wall. To the left of the kitchen is an open plan living area.
Upstairs consists of a bedroom and small shower room. Outside will also be a roof garden.
I plan to clad the building in recycled pallet crates and I hope to reclaim or recycle most of the materials for the build. I am now waiting for approval from both the Falkland estate and then planning permission from Fife Council.