This small, but heavy, dinosaur head is a test to understand a process I had never experienced before.

The bronze cast of 3D printing into PLA.

Being a big fan of 3D modeling and 3D printing, once I discovered that in the university they used to cast bronze and aluminium directly with printed plastic parts, I decided to try and see what the result of this process is like.

3D printed (PLA)

I was able to perform the whole process thanks to Esmond who was designing some rings to be cast and then I joined his casting “tree”.

process, wax sprue

The 3D model I printed was simply downloaded from the internet. The dinosaur head motif? A gift.

This technique opens up many possibilities and I would like to be able to integrate it into future work. The result of the printing is very good, you can see the layers of the print still perfectly. The piece still needs to be cleaned and polished and this worries me. Will it be difficult to maintain the details and clean the plaster and black on the surface?

bronze head from 3D print

I started this process because I had made a first prototype of a swivel clamp like the scaffolding one but with a smaller diameter (1.6 cm) 3D printed.

The idea was to be able to make new models of clamps that could acquire greater value for their aesthetics and for the material they are made of such as bronze (what is the real value of the material?? interesting speech started yesterday with Maiko).

3D printed swivel clamp

I made several sketches on how to improve also the usefulness of these joints but, besides introducing some marks to indicate the degrees of rotation, I didn’t find a good reason to do them.

I realised that my project is now covering a wider field and I’m going to stop and draw a joint that is already fully functional, what’s the point of it?

At the time I was only thinking about the technical aspect of these objects but now, finally, I’m managing to arrive at a concept that goes beyond reproducing forms belonging to the urban world.

The use of these joints is not something that I will not continue to carry on or that I have excluded from my project, they are simply not the thing I want to turn my attention to now. They are an integral part of an urban construction aesthetic that belongs to my project and they are also the best and most functional way to create durable structures, but if I am going to change their shape there must already be a specific application of them so it will make sense to develop a new shape linked to a new function.

The process of fusion from the press is however an interesting experiment carried out for the first time (actually it still needs to be cleaned up). I didn’t do the whole process myself, but I helped Esmond when necessary.

It’s a long and “unpleasant” process from what I’ve been told. I only participated in making the melting tree by connecting the dinosaur head to the sprue with the paper tubes dipped in wax. Esmond had to create the first layers of plaster around the objects to be melted and then followed the whole process of melting by assisting the laboratory technicians for a whole day.

I would like to redo the whole process to learn and see how it is done personally, but that doesn’t mean that I will necessarily design something related to my research if I don’t have to, but I want to put it into the things to do before I finish the academic year for my personal growth.

I always believe that having the knowledge of a process means to do it in person or at least to see it done by asking the reason of all the doubts that come to mind and understand the difficulties that arise.

Although it has been a long time since I made the vice for my project it was useful to rethink how my ideas about the same object have changed as the research progressed.

Over and out, see you again soon.