3D Print Nodes




Inspired by the Bean in Chicago, We intended to replicate it with a simple construction manner. Compare with the perfect curvature of the Bean with extremely high technology of CNC milling and sanding down , we tried to use 3D print nodes which allow us to have only the nodes that are the high technology part of the design while the rest of the parts can be easily fabricate with hand tools .

Step 1: Define Geometry in Rhino and Grasshopper

So the initial geometry is done in rhino and panelized in grasshopper. With the help of millipede that is a grasshopper plugin, the nodes are then topologically optimized to be as effective as possible , while the other fabrication details are extracted from the model .

Step 2: Topologically Optimized Joints

Here shows how the structure layerings are done and also how the joints are connected . With ABS 3D Print nodes , the rods are wooden rods that are cut at the front for the connection with 3D print node and pins are then used to lock them into place .

While the whole structure is then added a layer of acrylic with dichroic film to give it an elegant color ,then which is hold on the the wooden structure with the pins again.

Step 3: ABS 3D Print Nodes

Every nodes have their own number which will be corresponds to the rods and the panels. This information is printed on the the node with 3D printer too .

Step 4: Cutting the Rods

To simplify the work , paper strips are lasercut and scored with the numbers that they are further processed to cut the wood pieces and drill the holes for the pins.

Step 5: Dichroic Films

Dichroic Films are cutted in the form of the panels and carefully stick onto the surface

Step 6: Final Product

With the informations embedded onto the nodes, rods and panels, the structure is established on a lasercut landscape.



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    8 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Great work! Quick question - so are you just stretching film over the frame and using no acrylic at all?


    3 years ago

    if made from pvc instead of wood. this would this make a nice outdoor sculpture/rain shelter or a nice temporary tent for outdoor activities or fairs.


    3 years ago

    Awesome work! The final piece looks great, but I fell in love the wooden frame too. I wonder if it would look better if the panels were clear acrylic... I love exposing beautiful structures! Excellent work.

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    Reply 3 years ago

    I would say its more towards any freeform design. Of coz it would work in geodesic domes definitely , with 3D print the joints can be of different angles and does not need to replicate itself