Metal 1: Aluminum Sheet Final

  • Aluminum Sheet Metal Final Project

    From prior work I narrowed down my focus to the exploration of aluminum and copper coated steel rods through tension and compression (see previous Aluminum Sheet project). After revisiting the components that made the past piece successful, I further investigated forms where the tension compression method could be applied. 


    Initial project focused on tension and compression.
  • While I was able to create a provocative form, this study was still somewhat static, I wanted to find where else the concept could go. This led to a shift from trying to emphasize the tension in the piece to utilizing it as a connection system that otherwise would not be possible
  • Phase I:

    Further exploration of form and functionality based around the tension system identified. Through this process I came across the back-to-back curve form (shown below) as well as a way to utilized the steel rod as a pivot point. By keeping the outer aluminum curve in tension, the rod seats into the two dimples and is allowed to rotate (see animation below). This discovery inspired the final project's direction
  • Phase II:

    Identification of project direction and further investigation of solutions to each detail of the final form. By combining the form and the rotation discovered above, it was possible to reverse engineer a universal joint. With a modular part system, each piece could be made separately then clipped together in a tension fit to construct a 360 degree rotational joint. 

  • handle detail test, two pieces of riveted aluminum tact as the rivet between the two main curves at the end of the assembly. This sheet metal rivet detail doubles as a handle for easier manipulation of the piece.
  • Phase III:

    Final revision of the concept and form, then construction of final piece. To further the form of the piece, each aluminum strip was chamfered before being rolled and finally riveted together, back-to-back.  The two adjacent rivets on the larger curves prevented rotation while the single copper rivet (with the addition of a plastic washer) on the small curved pieces allow full rotation between the modules .
  •                                                                               movement of the final piece
  • chamfered edges and copper rivet details
  • three 360 degree joints connected linearly allows for full movement