I’ve been working off and on for months on a furniture project, a set of cabinet door panels inspired by the Japanese woodworking art of kumiko. Today I was finally able to laser cut a full-scale prototype of the project.

Kumiko Laser Panel

Here’s a look at the Illustrator file, a painstakingly assembled collection of hexagons, based on three archetypes:

Kumiko Screenshot

Here’s what was left in the laser:

Kumiko Negative

I couldn’t be happier with the result, and it’s particularly thrilling to hold in my hand something that has lived for so long inside my head and on a computer screen.

Update – Amazing when backlit!

Below is Alex Hartigan, a Folsom Lake College Engineering student preparing some Calculus III models he’s been developing in collaboration with Kevin Pipkin (Math) and that he printed on the new Form 2, which has gotten a lot of use lately, most recently with the Enabling the Future project.

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Alex and I connected last semester, and finally got the chance to work together on this Math project. Alex has a lot of skills in 3D design and printing, as well as experience on the Form 1, and through the process of preparing the Calc models, he taught me a whole lot about the finer points of printing on the Form 2, including various layout tips, and the manual editing of supports.

The Form 2 models came out great:

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The Ultimaker 2 ones, not so much, though the failure at least resulted in some interesting artifacts:

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Best of all, Max Mahoney (Chemistry) dropped by, and we recruited Alex to work on the chemistry project we prototyped the other day. One of my favorite parts of working with students is learning from them, and I hope to learn a lot from Alex before he heads off to Sac State next fall.

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