April 9, 2010

Playing with silicone molds

Posted in Modelling, Prototyping at 9:10 am by Kilo

When we first started to investigate shapes and designs, we used a bunch of simple  modelling techniques to get an idea of how the Jellypods design would come together. One of the most basic was of course pencil and paper, but that quickly moved onto an investment of about $100 in modelling clay and casting silicone and a some messy hours in the kitchen.

In the picture below you can see the very first attempt to cast the curvy Jellypods zipper opening, to see if the shape worked in practise. This model was made using a silicone baking dish as the mold frame and some modelling clay shaped as required to make the form of the top opening slit of a Jellypod.

Although a very basic and rough model, it was useful to see if it opened and closed with some springiness as expected, and how the end points would react to being stretched. You can also see the embryonic Jellypods logo embedded in the casting, made from a finger print in the modelling clay!

Of course this material is not the final material we will use in the Jellypods, but it was a useful exercise to test a couple of ideas. Testing like this, where we actually build something and see if it works, has been part of the Jellypods design process throughout. We want these thing to work, because we want to use them ourselves. And that means lots of time and energy playing with ideas. In later blogs we’ll show you how far we took the modelling process – into the realm of very cool three dimensional printing using machines called Objets and ZPrinters.

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1 Comment »

  1. Toni Hope said,

    The expenses might be pretty big but the finished product I think will be worth the price for the experience learned by playing with silicone molds. In my case, I want to learn more on silicone so I can replace my old silicone keypad.


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