Fab Lab 2015
A Fab Lab (or Fabrications Laboratory), is a concept originally dreamt up by Neil Gershenfeld at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology (MIT). A Fab Lab is a facility (building) that houses the basic machinery required to make (in Gershenfeld’s words) “just about anything”. It is Gershenfeld’s belief that personal fabrication is on the rise, and soon enough, the world technologically enabled (anyone with a computer) will be able to download and print their own personal 3-dimensional objects. These may include the latest i-phone, running shoes, and at some stage, even a car.
Personal fabrication therefore encompasses the design, prototyping and three-dimensional printing of one’s ideas.
The South African government has realised the potential of this, and as a result, has installed Fab Labs all around the country. The closest lab is situated in Thokosa, a township situated south of Johannesburg. Local Fab Labs are expected to facilitate local and innovative technology development in an open source fashion. This means that a person who designs and fabricates their idea is required to leave behind a set of instructions that teaches other people how to re-make or generate an iteration of the artefact in return for using the facilities, knowledge and material that are provided for free by the Labs.
The problem, however, is that the Lab in Thokosa does not have a vast database of instruction materials from which to make or learn about the process of fabrication. One of the other problems with the lab is that users do not necessarily use the provided machinery in combination in order to realise the full potential of the facilities (which is... to make just about anything). As a result, users leave the facilities with a limited understanding about the potential of the labs, and do not use it to maximum benefit.
HOW WE HELPED
We were set to design a illusionist locket in a Fablab. The importance of this is to create a desire for the community to work in Fablab and so that they can exercise their creativity. Most importantly children, to keep them out of streets, this will reduce accidents that occur in local communities involving children on the streets. Our design contains measurements and instructions for the community, this makes it possible for anyone to remake the locket if they see it in the shelves or images and desire to make it, easily accessible and free content if on desires to remake the model. The brief given to us was more about getting people to remake the model so that the Fablab can impart knowledge about its products and materials and potential.
WHAT WE DID
Machinery suitable for a Locket
The Laser Cutter uses CO2 technology to generate a high energy laser beam that will engrave and cut different materials.
- Epilog Laser, Mini 24" x 12“
- Work piece area = 610mm x 305mm
- 35 watt
The 3D Modelling and scanning machine is a high precision numerically controlled milling machine that can cut and engrave 2 and 3 dimensional shapes and engrave circuit boards.
- Ronald Modella 3D Plotter MDX-20
How to make the Illusionist Locket
- Get measurements
- Take out measurements and guide lines before printing.
- Use Wood Glue
- Sharp cutter to refine
What Makes the Illusionist Locket Special?
- The Locket looks like a pill shape.
- It is able to twist and turn into a heart.
- It is small
- Individuals can insect their photos or other personal items.
- It is exciting to create.
- The way it twist is amazing.