|Monthly Tech-Tip |
3D printing is bringing the ability to easily and inexpensively make molds for jiggering smaller pieces. That means many potters are thinking of automating. We are working to document this attachment. I have used it for many years, it works very well and can be fitted to many potters wheels (this is a Shimpo RK2). The plans will be in Fusion 360 format in 3D, with all measurements. That means you will be able to submit them in any fabricator and have one made exactly like this. We should be ready in October or November 2020.
The cup-head was lathed from a block of aluminum and it attaches to the shaft the same as a regular wheel-head. Plaster molds simply drop in and sit on their shoulder. The shoulder is the only point-of-contact, this prevents chattering while the mold spins when under pressure. I am using these molds for a casting-jiggering process (or just casting). For example, I can cast a mug in the mold, then pour out the slip, wait a few minutes and then, as the wheel spins, finish the rim and inside sure using a 3D-printed template/rib. I do not actually use the jigger arm, it is easier just to hold the template in hand. I can finish the rims on any round pieces made in these molds.
This is machined out of aluminum. We will have mechanical drawings available during Fall 2020. We also have drawings of a 3D printable shell mold for making molds that drop into this. And methodology for printing the outside contour of pieces to be jiggered. These will all be available soon.
Showing dimensions to fit a Shimpo RK2 wheel, its shaft is 0.983 in diameter. The molds fit down inside as shown, only contacting the cuphead at the shoulder.
We are currently working on creating mechanical drawings for this (and the cupheads). This is very sturdy and useful. The arm is relatively short compared to industrial jigger wheels and is thus useful for only small shapes. There is an advantage: The template contacts vertical walls at a more perpendicular angle. But the disadvantage is that the trailing edge of the template hits the outside edge of the lip on taller shapes. The pointed bolts hold the arm securely and their tightness enables varying the friction of movement. They have enough length to also position the arm horizontally. We 3D print templates and block masters for making working molds that drop into the cuphead.
The arm is heavy, made from 1/2 inch plate steel. The counterweight at the end have 1 in plate weights. The swivel mounts are machined to fit the custom cone-ended bolts.
2019 Jiggering-Casting Project