Fab 2: This is a drill. Repeat.

For the 2nd fabrication assignment, we had to make 5 repeating shapes of the same dimension. I was still hung up on making lamps and I wanted to combine wood and silicon in such a way that the 2 materials are interlocked with each other. My idea was to split the wood into multiple sections and then fill silicon between them as you can see in the figure below (the black area is the silicon):


I wanted to illuminate it from the bottom and the angled cuts appealed to me more. I came up with the straight cut option as a backup plan (2 months in ITP has taught me that at least!) and set off on my merry way.

I found a piece of squarish wood from the shop spring cleaning that I cut into wooden blocks using the miter saw.

The next task was to create equal blocks which was achieved using a pencil, ruler, miter saw and the sander.


I forgot to clamp the first piece and lost the whole piece as it flew away and smashed on the wall. Never forget to clamp the wood, kids!

Thankfully, I had extra wood and the breakage proved to be a minor inconvenience.


I traced the diagonal cut shape and went at it with a band saw and sander. I got the shape I wanted but problems were immediately apparent:

1) The sander eats through tiny pieces of wood. The piece on the middle-right became smaller than the rest in no time.

2) With the diagonal cut, it becomes very hard to keep track of the perpendicular surfaces and tracking the relative position to each other.


In the interest of time, I decided to go with the straight cuts and eliminate the smaller pieces once they are cut.

Measure and draw clearly marked go-no go lines.


Put your trust and full attention in the band saw and sander.


Cut small dowels and glue them in.


Wait for a few hours and voila! You have your wood shape.


I did not get any time to pour and cure the silicon but that’s next on the item list as soon as the class is done!


1) The first prototype sucks. ALWAYS. Everything that can go wrong will go wrong. In hindsight, I should have made one and then made the others.

2) The hardness of wood varies so much that it’s not always possible to predict its actual behavior on the cutter and the sander from the sketch.


4) Sanding eats into wood fast and measurements go for a toss. The sandpaper is slower but you are in so much more control.

Bonus picture of leftovers: