The eighth Tiree Tech Wave was held 23-27 October 2014.

Special Events: Digital Fabrication workshops – 3D scanning, 3D printing, laser cutting

Adam’s blog about TTW8 and Critical making at ‘TAG’

Jacqui’s blogs part 1 and part 2

Fab Lab Cardiff blog about TTW8

About TTW8

This was one of the largest Tech Waves with 31 full participants. There were large groups from Cardiff School of Art and Design (CSAD) and Nesta Scotland’s ‘Code Fellows’, and two researchers came from different Canadian universities sponsored by GRAND NCE, Canada’s Digital Media Research Network.

As well as 5 local residents who took part in the Tech Wave as a whole, 14 others took part in workshops and many others called in to see what was going on.

Tech Waves have an open agenda with many small projects and experiments, but there were a few major activities.

Fab Lab Cardiff and 3D Scanning

CSAD brought state-of-the-art equipment from Fab Lab Cardiff including two 3D printers, a flat-bed laser cutter, a vinyl cutter, and plastic bender. In addition Steve Foreshaw brought a 3D scanner and different style of 3D printer. This extensive array of digital fabrication equipment was used to support various projects and to deliver three workshops for Tiree residents. Items created included a digital projector housing (see below), wooden laser-cut bangles, 3D printed sheep for a board game, model busts and hands from 3D scans of participants, a microphone wind-baffle, a Tiree insert for unused tax disc holders (which are to be scaled up to make custom Tiree coasters), and a turntable for model painting.

Digital Fabrication Workshops

Three workshops covered 3D scanning, 3D printing and laser cutting. In all 16 Tiree residents took part in these as well as other Tech Wave participants from school-age to the retired. There was an enthusiastic response from all those at the workshop whose interests included the use of this technology in art, tractor maintenance, building, architecture and custom craft. There was clear interest in obtaining some of this equipment for permanent use on the island.

Rural Centre Table Top Projector

Some while ago a digital ‘touch table’ was installed in the rural centre and used for demonstrations including at the Frasan launch in 2013. However, the installation had to be removed when the new Rural Centre ceiling was installed. The group from CSAD included a number of students studying on an MSc in product design; between them they were tasked with re-establishing the touch table hardware. One group worked on an enclosure for the computer, mini-projector and sensor. This has been installed in the ceiling of the foyer Rural Centre. The other group worked on a custom table for the foyer that would function both for current uses and as a surface for digital projection. While here they built models using the equipment and this will be cut full size on the larger equipment at Fab Lab Cardiff and shipped ‘flat pack’ in the coming months.

At the next Tech Wave we hope to install the software needed to turn this into a fully interactive touch table. However, the project is already available for use as a standard wall projector during meetings or pointed down onto the table, for example, to discuss a map or spreadsheet.

Pure Digital Projects

In addition to projects centred on the Fab Lab equipment, there were various computer-based projects, including a digital ‘mirror’ and work on providing better data on current and historic ferry and air reliability.

TTW8 Key Facts

Tiree Tech Wave participants:
number: 31 participants (5 local, 26 visitors)
+ 2 partners
nationalities: Scottish, English, Welsh, Canadian,
Iranian, Dutch and South Korean
traveled from: Canada, Cardiff, Manchester, and
various locations in Scotland
Digital Fabrication Workshops (local participants):
3D Scanning: 9
3D Printing: 9
Laser Cutting: 6
Overall: 16 (some participants at several workshops)

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