Reformable Mold (2017)

Mold making - casting is one of the most crucial technique used in modern manufacturing industry. But the technique itself dates back to the bronze age.

Although there has been great improvements in material and equipment used in the process, the core process of mold making and pouring (casting) material into the cavity stayed more or less the same.

The biggest drawback lies in the making of the initial mold. It is where the most of the cost happens and once the mold is made it stays unchangeable, which in part 3-D printing can make up for, but the speed and the range of material makes the technique still highly attractive compared to 3-D printing.

Reformable Mold tries to fill the gap between those two means of manufacturing and explores how to apply customization in traditional manufacturing techniques by incorporating current technology.

Commissioned by Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism 2017

Few photos from making the machine


Testing various casting material, in this case a combination of organic material (gelatin & jelly + seeds)

In the beginning, 3-D printing gelatin with seeds was one of the fabrication candidate.

Germination test with 2-D gelatin structure

Initial idea - approximation of geometry by tiling

50 non-captive linear motor from China

During the making process, I got a small(6040) 4-axis CNC from China

Many parts were made with this CNC, photos below.

First time PCB design (KiCad) then CNC milling

CNC'ed motor mount plate

Parts being put together

Motors mounted

Plaster, Portland cement, porcelain clay cast in 0.3mmPVC mold

Also CNC'ed a nameplate, then filled with enamel. 800 denotes the machine is version 0.8

WORKSHOP (SEP 23 - 24, 2017)

Melting chocolate with heat gun for casting later

Preparing and mixing various material

Concrete with wheat seeds(didn't germinate), paraffin wax and chocolate

Grass seeds in porcelain clay germinated!

Click here to view the page from the official biennale website.

Documentation Video