Mittwoch, 1. Februar 2012

Lasercutting and some impressions on architectural modelbuilding

Today I'll show you my model built for my big draft this term and talk about a very interesting technique, named lasercutting.

Some of you will know lasercutting, there are a lot of companies offering parts or complete kits of buildings.
It is a very cheap and fast method to create two dimensional pieces, which also can be engraved with lines, text or things like that. (And from this parts you can build threedimensional stuff very easy)
Here are a few pieces I made for my draft model :

How does it work?
First you have to draw a vectorbased plan with all the lines you want to cut or engrave (good planning is really important, you have to know which lines shall be cut or engraved at this point because you have to draw them on different layers and there should't be two lines doubled for construction)
and bring it to some file format the lasercutter is able to read.
Then the cutter will follow the lines and burn them out, with high power for cutting and lower for engraving.
I am planning to write a tutorial about this whole thing, with screenshots and everything needed.

Now you may think...for what? Nobody owns such a thing (well, nobody I know)...
here comes the good message :)
I think every university and many schools of engineering own one at their mathematic or architectural faculty.
At least here in germany thats the case.
From now on, I just can talk about my university, but I think it won't differ that much.
They make a special price for students, for ALL students, not just architects and mathstudents!
That means, if you are a student or know one, that would have an hour for you, you CAN use a lasercutter.
Sounds good, doesn't it?

What can you do with this babies?
Well you could make your own buildings for tabletop gaming, detailed facades for showcase scenes, floors with wood, tiles,windows, doors ... and so on.
And it really isn't that hard to learn.
Also most faculties offer pc cabinets with the software needed, or you can use the 30 day trial time if you just do one thing.

This is another example of things possible. It's a very little building extension and you can see, how small the pieces can be:

The tutorial will need some time, another exam needs to be written but I hope I provoked some appetite :)

Now some pictures of my model:
First ones are the working model, where you check proportions and volumes and such stuff...things I like to do at my pc, but it was demanded.

All pieces after the laserwork:

This little tree was an important motive for my draft,so it had to stand out.
I tried an old technique (making trees from wire) with some new material: Liquid Greenstuff from Games Workshop. Used to I made the bark with gypsum or fimo soft, but liquid does a way quicker job and is absolutely fine for building up volume. The modell is scale 1:200 so the bark didn't need structure.
(Would fit perfect for Epic games) but for 28 mm gaming terrain I would do a final step with some putty to engrave the bark structure.

And finally some impressions after beeing ready (with sunrise light after a night of work :) )

Wish you a nice evening, I'll enjoy my giant hot chocolate and paint till my brush catches fire :)