Sunday, January 9, 2022

ron resch


Have you ever learned about something and wonder... "why haven't I seen this or been told about this before this point in my life?". Well today I stumbled onto information about artist, designer, architect, computer scientist, Ron Resch

The video Paper and Stick above is stellar. He received his B.A. and M.F.A. from the University of Iowa in the mid sixties and later to went on to teach at the University of Illinois-UC (Art and Computer Science) and later the University of Iowa (Computer Science) and Boston University (Computer Science). He later did consulting work and worked with NASA and on Star Trek the Motion Picture. What a career!

The egg he built above was a major undertaking. As the end of the film denotes, he started developing some of his calculations via computer. The feedback that he got from each development in his work and how he later applies it blows me away. He was so steady in his pursuit and again I assume this lead to the computer science gigs as a result of continuing to develop his work via computer. 

Think about this... this is the beginning of algorithmic computer based design at this time. It gets better though...He modified a plotter to score and cut sheets of aluminum for the giant egg. Yes, that's right he modified/built a custom CNC machine to digitally fabricate the egg in 1975. The list of experts on his website and what they say about him is impressive.

I know there are many people folding paper and much research at MIT being done on the topic. I also know this was the basis of a lot of the early design work I was taught in college. The Bauhaus work was obviously a big influence of the Foundations program I went through. I also know a lot of Buckminster Fuller's work was influential to my Foundations education probably due to proximity of SIU-C to where I grew up and attended college. It's just interesting that this seems to be the "missing link" between my early education and my interests in technology, tools, craft, architecture, design, art , and digital fabrication. Well, this was just too good to not post about. Fascinating!! Ron Resch was the real deal!

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

evan wilcox interview


Listen to this! Evan Wilcox has always been someone who I have admired from afar. This interview made me even more fond of his work and character as a human being.

mechanical beauty





What a beauty this is...


tacoma ball joints/front end rebuild

I had a few days off for Thanksgiving. Jill wanted to get a Christmas tree the day after, so we drove over to the patch and picked up the tree she had a tagged a week or two before. The Tacoma has been squeaking like crazy and I knew the lower ball joints were going out. Luckily, I bought all the parts needed for replacing the entire front end when I originally bought the truck, so I had everything I needed sitting in boxes in the shop.

At first I thought I would just do the lower ball joints as it should have been a quick replacement job. As I was taking things apart, I snapped a couple bolts off in one of the knuckles on the driver's side, so things quickly turned into a full replacement. It made sense to change the upper ball joints anyway and this would allow me to remove the entire knuckle to make getting the snapped bolts out. Everything came apart easily after this and the only issue was going to be the reinstall of the upper ball joints since I didn't have a large enough press. Jill and i ended up taking a quick trip to Harbor Freight in Lenoir. They were having a sale anyway and the ball joint tool was considerably cheaper. The next day, I spent the day getting things back together and slapping some fresh paint on the new parts. I was glad I replaced the inner and outer tie rod ends. The passenger side inner was shot. I don't know how I didn't notice it in the steering. I have an upgraded Tundra brake kit that I probably should have installed, but I ended up just putting the old rotors and calipers back on, since they are still good. I'll wait for another day to do this job. At least I broke all the bolts loose in taking things apart, so it should come apart easier when I decide to do this.

I spent some time doing a "garage alignment" so I could rive to work the next day, but I'll have the professionals do a proper job very soon. I always wish I could do these jobs faster so I had more time to do things I really want to be doing, but this is what ends up happening when your cheap and your labor is cheaper. That said, it's good to be rid of the squeak and worry about ball joint failure.


noah's ceramic studio

Andrea loaned Noah a wheel so he could set up a studio at home. She had it sitting outside her garage and she mainly does hand-building so she said he could borrow it.  He's been loving his ceramic class in high school and he has been spending a lot of time throwing, so he was thrilled to get the opportunity. It is so great to have friends like Andrea and Matt. Andrea reminds me of my friend Adream, as Andrea is just as compassionate and caring as my friend Adream was. I'm so thankful that Matt and Andrea came to Boone to live. I feel like I've known them both for a lifetime. It's not common for things to be that way.

We brought the wheel home and cleaned it up a bit and then Noah and I got to work moving things around in the basement. We cleared a space in the furnace room and he set-0up some shelves that we were storing paint on so he can put finished pieces there. He's been throwing a lot and even showing the girls. Maya has taken to it pretty quickly as well. I'm so glad that they all appreciate the act of working with materials and making things. I hope this gift and appreciation never slips away from them as they become adults. 

I made Noah a proper wedging table a few days later (not shown here). I have yet to install some more shelves for him and install a sheet or two of drywall to fully inclose the space. Once we get that done, he'll just need a kiln. I can't wait to see what all he makes.


Saturday, November 13, 2021

corsair: flying

from Sport Aviation magazine

from Wisconsin Wing News newsletter

This week I checked in with Michael Guslick after I picked up a "new" Stratasys 3D printer (more on this later). It was So good to reconnect with him. Michael is a an outstanding individual that I first met at a metals workshop that I taught at UWM. I ended up standing and talking with him and his friend Charles for hours after that first workshop and a friendship with both of them was born.

Anyway, Michael and I reconnected via email and he shared the info above about the Corsair that he was working on when I left Milwaukee. I made a few posts about this project here:

I was so happy to hear that the Corsair is now airworthy. What a cool thing to work on, and Michael informed me that he and Marc are now the goto shop for Corsair ailerons. How cool is that?


thomas campbell

This past week Thomas Campbell contacted me about an upcoming exhibition he has happening at the Memphis Metals Museum. He was inquiring about getting some assistance with scaling some of the forms that he currently makes in order to be able to cut and bend some larger pieces that he will weld together for the larger objects being made for the Memphis exhibition. He sent me images of the sample pieces along with his template and I made a Rhino model for him and pulled some measurements for him to ensure that all of the pieces would be uniform form a concentric form. I'm a big fan, of Thomas, his work, his quiet demeanor, and especially his work ethic. He has a "put your head down and get to work" attitude that resonates with how I was raised. He's definitely "one to watch". 

By the way, Thomas shared the term "gore" with me. The word is worth looking up.

I can't wait to see the work for his upcoming show.