What we do

Our guiding philosophy is to use the best process and material to get the desired result.  Typically this means that kits will be assembled from a variety of materials using anumber of processes, to suit the parts being made.

Our kits and products are produced using the following technologies:

Photoetching

Flat parts are drawn in a 2D CAD package.  The file for the phototool consists of two layers; a ‘top’ and a ‘bottom’.  This image is transferred to metal sheets, which are the subjected to an acid treatment to remove  unwanted material.  The result is a fret containing the desired parts with surface details on either side.

The skill with this process is not so much cutting out parts as designing assemblies that fold up origami like into the final model.  This minimises joining pieces and avoids misalignment during building.

3D printing

Three dimensional models are drawn in 3D CAD and printed on our in-house high resolution 3D printer.  The resulting models are then:

  • Used directly (as in our figures)
  • Used to produce moulds for casting
  • Used as sacrificial patterns in the lost wax proces for the very best quality castings.

Lost wax casting

In the lost wax process wax (or printed resin) models are encased in a mineral ‘investment’ in a flask.  This forms the mould.  The flask is heated to burn out the wax, and the molten metal is then introduced under vacuum.  This process allows very fine detail to be produced.  While typically referred to as ‘brass’, our castings are actually a bronze alloy.

Other processes

We also use a variety of more traditional model making techniques in a variety of materials.