Matrix Jig




About: Alice Gong uncovers new ways of meaningful making within contemporary design, art, craft, and technology. Informed by the evolving dynamics between analog, mechanical, and automated processes, she is constan...

Matrix jig is a bending tool that allows for the iterative forming of compound curves. The jig’s interchanging parts can be customized into different combinations to create curves with varying dimensions. A collection of functional objects can be created through this process driven approach where the formal and aesthetic decisions are informed by a machine.

Conceived based on the combination formula, this mathematical approach to designing a tool as a physical algorithm helps to generate more possible combinations and provide a full spectrum of options. The idea is to embrace an equation that can exemplify creativity and then to interpret the various parts that are produced.



Step 1:

1. Design:

Create patterns of the jig in Rhino as a drawing. Decide on dimensions and make sure all the pieces fit together in the jig. Design the various combinations that this tool will allow. What is the maximum width, height and depth of the compound curve?

2. Fabrication:

Laminate two sheets of 4 x 6 foot plywood and let it dry overnight with clamps. Make sure that the center of the sheets are getting enough pressure as to avoid air pockets. Export the 2D drawing to Rhino Cam and make tool paths for 3-axis milling on the CNC.

3. Construction:

Break apart patterns and remove bridges with a chisel. Drill the main house of the jig together and place the bending pieces within the jig to your own customization.

4. Use:

Experiment with the different combinations of compound curves that can be made using this tool. Experiment with materials to bend like ash wood, metal rods, acrylic rods, leather...etc.



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