Tea Vessel

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(Click thumbnails above to see larger images.)

The first round of ideation sketches focused on simple forms, sometimes incorporating an additional functional feature, sometimes not. Those concepts are shown below; click thumbnail to see larger image.1st_sketches

Three concepts were selected for further sketch refinement; these are shown below (click thumbnails to see larger images).
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The last two concepts shown above were selected to be fabricated out of modelmaking foam; this was accomplished via gluing together slices of the foam to make a suitable block, cutting down to size using the bandsaw, and turned on the lathe and hand-sanded. The sketch models were then primed with white gesso to better convey form and shape; click thumbnails below to see larger images.
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A final ideation drawing was produced, using color to convey a sense of surface quality and material choice. Initially, I had wanted to cut a block of wood (Australian hardwood, in this case) down to a hexagonal block, then glue thin pieces of a contrasting veneer to the sides. Once dry, the block would be turned on the lathe to expose the wood underneath at the scalloped edges; however, I was advised that this was a potentially dangerous method of manufacture, and was not certain to yield acceptable results. The drawing below conveys this design direction; click thumbnail below to see larger image.

Ultimately, I decided against the inclusion of veneer panels. The block of Australian hardwood was cut down to a hexagonal block using the table saw; multiple passes with the saw blade set at various angles were necessary to achieve an approximately equilateral hexagonal cross-section. The edges were scalloped via turning of the block on a lathe, following a pre-fabricated template. Extraneous wood was removed from the top and bottom using a miter saw; the inside was hollowed out with multiple passes of a 2″ Forstner bit to roughly remove material, with additional removing accomplished via a Dremel tool with a cylindrical sander bit. The finished product is shown at the top of this page. A PDF of the full project documentation can be downloaded here.

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