Posts Tagged ‘project’

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Friday, May 23rd, 2014

We are currently conducting a research project on the use of pre-preg carbon fiber filament for the production of variable architectural building units. This required the design and construction of a baking oven. As the pre-preg only needs to be baked at a low 265 degrees Fahrenheit we could use infrared lamps as our heat source. The exterior dimension of the oven is 4′x4′x8′ and is constructed from a steel tube frame. Roxul is used as insulation with diamond mesh serving as the interior walls of the oven and concrete tile board the floor. The exterior is clad in OSB. Six Nutone heat lamp fixtures were used to hold the twelve 250w infrared lamps. We later discovered we needed to add eight more lamps to acquire the proper temperature. These were affixed to the oven ceiling with simple off the shelf ceramic fixtures. It was decided to run the two sides of the oven on separate circuits as it allowed us to run it from a 120v power source – this also proved useful as during one bake we lost a relay for one side of the oven and were able to maintain temperature by just using the working side. The temperature is regulated by a PID controller from Auber Instruments. Construction images and parts baking image below:


DESIGN: Glenn Wilcox
FABRICATION: Glenn Wilcox, Troy Hillman and Megha Chandrasekhar
PHOTOS: Glenn Wilcox and Megha Chandrasekhar

FLYING CARPET | Fabrication

Monday, September 16th, 2013

The Flying Carpet is a piece of microarchitecture that converts a long, narrow volume of space in Angell Elementary School into a reading, writing, lounging, and play space for the children occupants of the building. Located on the second floor among the 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade classrooms, the Flying Carpet was designed to retain the existing programmatic uses of the space but give them beautiful and lively accommodation. Folk stories in many cultures tell of a mythical flying carpet that transport their riders to distant places faster than the wind. Recalling these stories from our own childhood, the flying carpet became the apt poetic metaphor for the space’s primary activities: reading, writing, and imagining… the fastest ways we know to travel elsewhere.


The computer script we wrote to generate the final form for the piece had to be able to produce widely varying sectional shapes, but also had to conform precisely to children’s body dimensions. Once written, we then could input conditional statements to control the table, bench, lounge, and variable “bump” heights.


Our early variations explored the use of double curved surfaces and alternative leg supports.


The final design responds to particular site conditions and utilizes the curvature and “landing” of the surface for self-support in addition to steel legs which follow the same geometry of the surface.


Since we were also going to be the fabricators on the project we made a series of scale models to study and refine the geometry in greater detail, and also to understand the process of fabrication and assembly of the final full scale piece.


For ease of fabrication, transport, and assembly, the final design is divided into seven sections. The steel support legs also serve a secondary role of joining the sections to each other.


Each section is broken down into smaller elements which overlap to create a stronger bonding surface. Dowel holes are drilled in each part to facilitate alignment and rapid assembly.


We developed cut sheets for CNC and Water-Jet cutting of both the wood and steel elements. It’s important to note that these were output directly from a 3D model to cutting files – no construction documents were made for the project.


After CNC machining, elements are laid out in order prior to assembly. Sections are glued and clamped in stages.


Parts are cleaned and sanded prior to section assembly.


Final sanding and finishing of one of the sections.


DESIGN: Glenn Wilcox and Anca Trandafirescu
MODEL FABRICATION: Jake Newsum and Secil Taskoparan
FABRICATION: Glenn Wilcox, Troy Hillman, Megha Chandrasekhar and Anca Trandafirescu
PHOTOS: Glenn Wilcox and Troy Hillman

CUTWORK | Concrete Casting Project

Sunday, October 28th, 2012

We continue to develop the script and form for the concrete casting project ‘Cutwork.’ And now have an actual site and program – a garden pavilion on a rural site in south-eastern Michigan. There are now many more variables involved – the depth and thickness of the parts change from bottom to top, also the vertical dimension of each row diminishes exponentially, along with the width of each vertical row from the entry to the back of the pavilion – so it subtly ‘opens up’ as one enters. Our plan over the next several months is to build a full scale vertical row to do some structural testing – and feed that data back into the computer model refining the final form – then produce all the parts over the winter for installation in the spring of 2013. A few working images below. Stay tuned.


Falling Sky Brewery

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012

Images of the finished Falling Sky Brewery project just before it opened. The finished tables used fir that was reclaimed from an old garage on site. The frames were powder coated grey. Let it Pour!


Falling Sky – Table Fabrication

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012

We fabricated the prototype for the table design in our own shop. This gave us the opportunity to make some critical design changes. A key detail shown in the images is the angled cutting of the structural tube – were they meet the side supports. This cut essentially hides the tube from the side – making it seem as if this thin piece of wood is spanning the full distance on its own – keeping the feel of the piece minimal. We actually had to find a second fabricator in Oregon because the first didn’t think the detail would work – and ideologically disagreed with the sense that the wood was spanning when it wasn’t. But we knew better!


Falling Sky – Table Design

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012

The table design for Falling Sky Brewery was inspired by the classic German beer hall table which is picnic table like and communal. This fit with the vision of the brewery. However – we wanted the design to be modern, minimal, flexible, and economical to build. Our idea was to use a standard steel angle and structural tubing for the framing – the wood was to be reclaimed fir salvaged from an old garage on site. We designed the tables in two halves that could work independently or together – and a series of modular sizes – 4′, 6′, and 8′ that would allow for the greatest flexibility in configuring the space.


Falling Sky Lights – Version One

Wednesday, April 18th, 2012

This was a project that began last summer and was completed in January this year. We were commissioned by Rob Cohen to design lights and furniture for a new brew pub, Falling Sky Brewing, that he was opening in Eugene Oregon. These are some images of the prototype of the first version light – what we were calling the ‘hairy one.’ We designed a parametric system in grasshopper to be able to alter the overall form of the light – then after unfolding we ran a script we wrote to create the tabing. The drawing shows how we were experimenting with the morphology of the tendrils. Key was the idea that the tabing not only holds the piece together (i.e. is structural) but also plays an ornamental roll. The only fasteners in the piece are the ones that hold a laser cut acrylic bracket to the body of the light. We adapted an inexpensive IKEA fixture to use as a light source.


kitchen tent | study models

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

We continue to study the kitchen tent project through a series of physical study models. A wire form was created – following one of the digital studies. This was used as a kind of dressing mannequin to form various surface studies exploring different techniques of patterning the fabric skin. These will eventually be flattened, scanned and re-worked as digital files.