When I lent my services to a collegue who was working on a film about 12 years ago, I was introduced to the world of cnc. I remember watching this huge machining centre milling out a slab of mdf and turning it into a fantastic set of gears. I knew that it would have taken me hours to achieve the same thing with traditional power tools. I decided then that I would invest in a cnc router for my own business Oxenham Design. At that time I could turn on a computer, but even to check email seemed like a crazy set of operations. I persevered and learned every piece of relevant software I could get my hands on. I am now fortunate enough to be using Vectric's ASPIRE software, and Techno cnc routers, which has helped us to create some amazing projects, both in part, or in full. I thought that this blog would be a great place to share "behind the scenes" adventures with the software, materials and equipment we use, as well as the projects we build.

Friday, 10 February 2012

10 things at once

Well, if you hadn't guessed, we haven't moved yet :( The new place STILL isn't divided into a new spot for us. We are continuing to rent where we are for another month. I have been moving less used tools and supplies to my garage at home. Which is O.K. I guess. I do find that I bring stuff home, then bring it back again, then bring it home. It's a little exhaustive, and frustrating, but we just keep dealing with each day. The bigger tools are organized and ready to go, as soon as we need to get the truck. I am concerned that this might be a huge inconvenience for a lot longer than I would like.

We have, however, been making headway on the design space area. Doing bits here and there in the evenings, or around other projects during the day.

Oh, it don't look like much right now, that's for sure! I opted to go with OSB board for all the walls and ceiling. This will allow me a fastening surface anywhere I need in the future. And as we were texturing every surface there is, the substrate doesn't much matter. I decided that all the seams will have riveted plates running down them, so I didn't need to worry about them being taped and mud-ed like drywall. The ceiling is being painted like 4'X8' rusted steel panels with rivets down all the seams. We had a meeting this morning for a neat job, but when I got back to the shop, I started to cast up the ceiling rivet heads.

 I didn't want to have to make a silicone mold for this, as I can be a little impatient sometimes. So I used one of the many artist mixing trays we seem to have all over. (However, it seems there was only one at the shop, as the rest are boxed up somewhere) I also cast a 1 1/4" wood screw in the center of each one, allowing us to screw them into the OSB where I want them. A little trick with this: Grind flats on 2 sides of the heads.
This stops the screw from spinning inside the casting when tightening it down. If I had more time, I would have sprayed the paint tray a rusty brown base, then cast the resin into it. If this was going to be in a public place, we would have tinted the resin so the white wouldn't show through if they got whacked. But on our ceiling, they will get next to no abuse. I hope to find the other trays this evening, as I need over 200 of these, and casting 10 at a time is a little slow.
I also got the 3 portholes that go on the one wall all drawn up, and will be cutting those tomorrow first thing out of MDF. The wall that these are going into backs onto the shop side, so with the light coming through the blue/teal acrylic, it should feel very underwater from inside the studio.
I wish I could just keep going on the space until it gets done, but work on other jobs needs to keep progressing, so this will definitely be a work in progress for a bit!

We got the go-ahead today for a silly little job that's gonna require some thinking, that's for sure! It's a miniature inflatable sky-dancer that has to actually dance. This is for a car commercial. He will only be 18" tall. I know that we won't be able to just scale the real one down, as gravity, air and material thickness don't scale accordingly. We will probably use a cable collapse system, along with air assist to achieve the results. It's gonna be a wild ride, that's for sure!!!!


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