Project 01 – Adventures in 3D Printing

By nuff
July 19, 2023
3 min read

Before we Begin

My brain is fried.

I know it'll get better as the course goes on, but right now it's hard to think coherently. Apologies in advance to anybody who has the misfortune of reading this. Apologies to my future self for the cringe.


Exploratory Making began with us bringing in a “gift”—something that sparked creativity, represented a current area of exploration or a skill we were developing. I had no idea what was going on (when do I ever?), so I brought in scent strips. They represent my nascent interest in working with scent and fragrance.

The Response

Working in pairs, the class exchanged gifts and created responses to each other's gifts using whatever medium we felt comfortable with (more on that here). My classmate Mishka made a cardboard perfume bottle, complete with label and bottle cap.

This reminded me that while I'm getting into actually making the stuff, there's still lots of joy to be found in the bit I actually know how to do—designing the packaging. Sometimes the musician gets into design because they need to make their own album covers, sometimes the designer picks up an instrument because they need an album cover to design. All roads lead to making.

The next part of the project involves us trying something new—a tool or medium we don't know very well. Lucky for me, that's basically everything.

I decided to try 3D printing for the first time, which meant modelling the bottle in Fusion 360.

The hardest part of this was reproducing that hexagonal cap. There's probably an easier way but I ended up manually drawing it line-by-line in 2D, extruding up and subtracting the two cylinders that form the “atomiser“.

So Close, But So Far

I really wanted a satisfying snap to the cap, so I decided to make the hole the exact same size as the cylinders, thinking it would expand with a little pressure. That was wrong. I also tried to emboss/deboss the label right into the bottle, which didn't really work with the Ultimaker S2's resolution. I think raised text was slightly better than inset but neither are legible, let alone beautiful.

Were I really manufacturing a fragrance, I would definitely experiment with literally branding the bottle (I'm assuming that's how you emboss glass?) rather than using a label. There's something nice about being able to feel the type. Which makes me think Braille. If I had a bit more time, I'd look into that too.

Stretch Goal: Make the Juice

Ii thought it might be fun to actually give folks a whiff of the fragrance. I'm still in the "learn your materials" stage of my olfactory education, so this was never going to be perfect. Looking online to see if there were any accessible formulae for a Hindi scent, I found a few that mentioned materials I had and freestyled the rest. Here's my very first fragrance formula (the plus signs indicate additions in the second iteration), while the notes at the bottom indicate additions in the third).

### Background Elements
Velvione - 3
Oakmoss 1% - 2
Labdanum - 2

### Woods
Palo Santo - 3+3
Black Agar Givco - 5+5
Cedarwood Atlas-10+10
ISO E Super 5.94% - 7
Sandalwood 4.39% - 3+10

### Freshness
Stemone - 4
Petitgrain - 4
Auralva - 2
Lemon - 4
Cardamom -2
Lavender (France) -1

- Needs BASS, needs WOOD.
- Add Palo (5), Oud (6), Cedar (10), Sandal?

I added a few drops to the inside of the cap to simulate the feeling of “testing” a fragrance. Perhaps one day I'll actually make this thing.

[…] working in pairs for this project. Mishka and I have been paired again for our first collab since the very first Low Res project. As two designers who aren't particularly strong at code, I predict an aesthetic experience. […]

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