This week we got some insights about measurements and useful and accurate tools to use. We also saw a lot of examples of laser cut applications that we can do with the machines at ITP’s shop. I really liked the metal etching, and hope to make something with this method in the future.
I decided this week to create a model of a subway car. I looked at a lot of examples, and finally found a car train that I liked, which is similar to the regular subway car that we take these days – R65. I found it in this blog, made by a guy that makes paper models for vehicles. In order to laser cut my car, I needed to remake the model in vector. I also wanted to play a bit with the sizes, and the design.
I got two materials that I wanted to try, grey/black mountboard, and Basswood. I found those two at Blick art store. I thought the gray mountboard will look good etched, when it will reveal the black board which is the second layer in this board.
After I finished the work on the car, I made some tests with my materials, on the 75W machine in the shop. I wanted to test the way it etches, half-cut and cut the material. I planned to have curved corners on the car, so I wanted to test that first.
Vector etch: 50/30/50 works best, as a vector cut that etches, not in the etching mode.
Half cut: 40/70/50 X2, I figures it’s best to do it twice than make the power higher, and also to avoid burning marks.
Cut: 30/80/50 X2 , fully cut.
Small tests in the corner of the board:
Then after getting good results in the test, I started to cut, by using the layers in order to first etch and then to cut:
And this is how the first cat came out:
After building the car with the mountboard, I tested the machine with the Basswood:
Basically the speed will determine if the vector etching will be darker or lighter.
I ended up using 20/8/20, for cutting I used 20/100/20.
I also changed the model to not have the curved corners, because I figured it will just break with the wood.
So I ended up with two subway cars..I really enjoyed the work on the curved parts, It’s great to explore how half cuts work.
I also used the CNC this week with the help of Illay from 2nd year, in order to make my group P-comp prototype. He showed me how to cut circles that we needed, by making a file in illustrator. We went over the workflow in the CNC Mastercam software , choosing bits, aligning the machine and adjusting the files after exporting.