Technology | Laser cutting

Class – Technology, Laser cutting

Software | Materials

AutoCAD Rhinoceros 3D Plywood


Laser cutter

Task | preparation

The class was dedicated to creation of own projects (things) using main accessible materials, like wood, plywood, plastic, etc. The task’s goal mostly was to develop students’ skills in working with machines. I gave the priority to laser printer in order to consider this equipment’s specifics and facilities (creation not only plain details but also parametric things, for example) and understand the possibilities of further work on the city project. The simple box-casket was chosen for development by virtue of universality and traditional way of assembly (furthermore, the casket would be used for my earrings’ rich collection). Plywood material was more suitable as for laser cutting as for the chosen object.

Design process

The design process included a common way of objects’ creation. So, sketching was initial stage when different types of boxes were proposed. There was short period of preparation of initial sketches of two plywood objects, and one of them was seemed to more interesting and useful. It was created the drawing of all sides of the ‘correct’ box-casket with dimensions in AutoCAD. Finished dwg-file was opened with software and send to laser printing. The first details were inconsistent, and construction ‘dilapidated’ as there was the error for about a half of millimeter from each side. It was necessary to correct some details enlarging its sockets so that details were strongly connected. However, the second attempt was also failed. The error turned out to be reversed – the holes were too small and the details did not dock. The thin cutter made it possible to correct even smaller errors and the details finally got in place, so there was no point in re-cutting. It can be noted that because of the artificial cutting there were gaps between the parts, so it was necessary to strengthen the box with glue (although in general everything was not bad).

It is interesting to noticed that some holes were not cut through to the bitter end. However, it was decided to use this as an aesthetic solution with textures’ diversity on the cover’s top. The final box was decorated by holes, half-hole stickers, notches, unnecessary ‘prunings’, etc. This task allow to consider laser cutting process from initial stage to realization and necessary for this software.

Many thanks to Ivan Mitrofanov for supervising and to colleagues for funny atmosphere during the work        

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