No doubt, pour our over coffee brewing is having a moment right now. From Blue Bottle to your home, the ubiquitous and classic method of using a drip cone has been co-opted, fetishisized and turned into a ritualistic process of rinsing, blooming and pouring ever so slowly.
Instead of critiquing the cultural transformation of the humble drip I have decided to ride the new wave of pour over coffee into my residency at Pier 9. With this understanding in mind I set out to begin my time in the workshop by creating an apparatus by which to fuel late nights and early mornings. Though there is no shortage of coffee on the pier, I set out to create an object to facilitate my favorite method of brewing.
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Step 1: Procure Cone
Though casting, throwing or otherwise creating one's own cone would be a worthy project in and of itself, for this project I decided to cheat and buy a factory produced cone. For this project I chose a Hario V60 brewing cone. It's a dead simple design, but those who have a better taste for coffee than I swear by it. Further, to my eye it fits the 'industrial lab' aesthetic that I was looking for in this project.
Step 2: Concept Design
The design requirements for this project are dead simple: hold the cone above your vessel, such that you can pour hot water into it and end up with a cup of coffee. A quick Google search will yield countless contraptions from minimal to extravagant. Drawing inspiration from the industrial setting in which I currently work I decided to use three distinct areas of the workshop to create a stand that fit my aesthetics. Using wood, metal, and 3d print media I set out on a simple, minimal design.
Step 3: Digital Design
I used Autodesk Inventor to create the spacing of the base, and the rods. I used Rhino3d to create the collar that I would later 3d print. One of my personal goals of my residency is to become more familiar with Autodesk's fabrication software. I am most comfortable in Rhino, but these experimental projects allow me to work in Inventor and Fusion 360 which each have their own utility that lend themselves to different parts of a fabrication workflow.
Step 4: Print the Collar
With my design complete I headed for the Objet printers at the pier. The collar could have been made any number of ways out of wood, metal, plastic, but another goal of the project was to use the 3d printers to fabricate a component so my collar was designed around their process.
Step 5: Fabricate Mock Ups
Before cutting into my Piece of Walnut, or attaching pieces to the collar, I decided to create a mock up set of parts to see how the geometry aligned. I often find that the digital model gets lost in translation and you find yourself with a part that is too long, short, right, left etc...
In this case the geometry was simple enough that there was no trial and error, but it's always better to find that out on a scrap piece than on your final materials
Step 6: Fabricate the Legs
Starting with 1/4 Aluminum rod stock, the legs were cut down to size on a cold saw. Then threads were cut into the end of each rod with a die set. (Originally the plan was to epoxy the legs to the base, but that method created an inflexible product. Instead I decided to screw the legs into the base, so that later it could all be unscrewed and disassembled for travel and cleaning.)
The legs were then bent to 90 on a vice. They were hit with some 800 grit sandpaper afterwards to give them a uniform matte finish.
Step 7: Fabricate the Base
The base came from a longer board of Walnut. I cut it down to the final dimensions of 7-0" x 8-0" on a table saw.
Then I measured the holes for the legs and drilled them. I opted not to drill through holes because I wanted to maintain the surface on the bottom of the stand.
Lastly I chamfered the edges of the base 1/16" on a table router in order to give the corners a more finished look.
Step 8: Apply Finishes
For durability I added finishes to the collar and the base. The collar received two coats of matte acrylic to deepen the black color and give in a protective finish. The base received three coats of Danish oil. Depending on how the wood holds up to water I may go back and apply a wax paste to the base if it seems wise.
Step 9: Assemble and Enjoy!
This is the best part. The legs simply screwed into the holes in the base, and with a little flexing the collar snapped into place. The whole apparatus is quite sturdy, and brews a great cup of coffee. It makes a fine desk-side companion.