WikiWax

This project looked to understand and develop a construction set that could be open source such as the WikiHouse CNC construction set. Through the material research done, I have predominately focused on the use of wax in construction. Experiments have explored its use as a form-finder, form-work and as a composite material. To apply this system as a Wiki, I strived to develop potential products, along with build information, which could then be open source. However the nature of the research, the complexity of the processes, and the functionality of the final products led me to question whether the Wiki route would be feasible. As an alternative, I have begun to explore taking the system along a business route, whilst considering making parts open source for individuals.

Weighing up the options:

1. Open Source
If someone wants to make an item then they have the information available to do so. This could be particularly relevant for the environmental products which could act as cheap DIY alternatives for those that can afford to buy specialist systems.

2. Private copyrighted business
The nature of the WikiWax processes makes it difficult to replicate, they are also not items of necessity nor would they be built as a collective. These are just some of the reasons why the systems developed don’t naturally lend themselves to be open source. As beautiful items they could instead be made into unique designer products and sold.

3. Open Source but protected form big companies
This approach allows for both systems to operate. Individuals can make their own table for example or develop and modify the processes, allowing for innovation and growth. But also products can be patented and sold. Through this strategy architecture is open to 100% of the population rather than the 1% if limited to sale only.

WAXFORM

WAXFORM2

WAXFORM3

WAXFORM4

WAXFORM5

WAXFORM6

For further information on my research and material experiments see my portfolio

Shape to Fabrication Team 4

Here are some process images from the Shape to Fabrication workshop. I was part of team 4, with Lawrence Friesen and David Rutten, who were designing a cast high tensile gypsum foundation to take a corian bench surface. The design was conceived as a close packing of egg shaped forms whose centroids lay either on the top or bottom surface. The interlocking egg forms would reduced the amount of material required to form the foundation to a minimum whilst maintaining a strong band of material through the centre of the foundation. The total volume of the foundation design was 0.34 m3. The moulds were CNC cut from expanded polystyrene and finished with PVA release agent. The moulds were then cast with a high strength gypsum usually used for taking moulds of teeth. Unfortunately the release agent did not work correctly and as such the moulds had to be forcefully removed using a water jet. This slowed down the process significantly and meant we only had time to release one of the three foundation blocks.

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