The 5 cubes sculpture project
One of the 5 cubes fashioned crudely of rope immediately after the completion of phase 2
The 5 cubes sculpture project is a project to build a large, luminous geometric sculpture to bring
to Burning Man
2010 eventually. Since phase one of the sculpture was enjoyed so much at Cold Compress
(the Toronto decomp for the 2010 burn), as something that could be climbed in and moved around,
subsequent phases were postponed for about a year as we built more
for climbing, etc..
Now that there are enough deathtraps in circulation, we're getting back to work on the cubes
(though there are still occasional pauses to build more deathtraps when the existing ones break
or get get given away).
Did anything else change?
Well, in order to allow phase one to function both as a deathtrap and a 5-cubes frame, the idea
came up that the support wires could be attached to the eye bolts using a shackle, instead of
being looped directly on. This seems like it'd be a good idea for minimizing terrible tangled
messes that would have to be untangled during assembly, so it's been done even though there are
other frames for playing in (and the 5 cubes frame is old enough to probably break if it's
used for any more climbing).
Phase zero: master planning -- COMPLETE!
This phase was created so that I could feel like I accomplished something before anything got
built. It actually involved a nontrivial amount of work (e.g. size calculations, material
Identify suitable materials
Choose a display size
Compile a preliminary shopping list(here)
Identify and group/order work needed
Start trying to recruit volunteers to help
Phase one: frame -- COMPLETE!
Now that this phase is complete we have a ~7.5' steel icosahedron that can be brought to parties.
Thanks to the Toronto burner community for providing an art grant to cover most of the material costs,
and special thanks to Paul, Reid, Chris, and everyone else who volunteered to help with this phase.
Choose icosahedral vs. dodecahedral frame
Calculate strut length needed for desired display size (4.5 feet)
Get quotes and weights for various strut materials
Select one of the strut materials
Raise funds (decomp grant w00t)
Buy the strut stock (EMT conduit; also need fasteners, drill bits, and chopsaw wheel)
Hold a strut-fabrication party
Do a test-build
Phase one and a half: plan adjustments -- COMPLETE!
This phase led to the forking off of Dr. Kiwano's Geodesic Deathtraps
Phase two: vertices -- COMPLETE!
Now this phase is complete, there's a neato little wire lattice for inside the
icosahedron. It still lacks fire and fancy lights, but can probably find a home
at events regardless (though I'll probably bring deathtraps instead, since the struts
are getting weakened from all the climbing that it's supported so far). Thanks to Carey
and Carl with help designing and sourcing the support cables, to Dan for help with
fabrication, and to Ewan for help tuning and labelling the supports.
Measure/compute length of cable needed to support vertices (210')
Get quotes and weights for various cable materials and loop types
Select a cable material and loop type (3/64" 7x7 stainless cable, finished with bicycle shifter cable endcaps, with crimps (light end) and drilled bolts (frame end) to close the loops)
Raise funds (not that costly)
Buy the cable (also shackles, nuts, bolts, loop crimps, washers, and cable ends)
Cut the cable and crimp the loops into the light/inner end of the cables
Drill cable holes in the frame-end-loop bolts
Hold a vertex-mounting party (with another test build, and measurements)
Phase two and a half: plan adjustments
This phase consisted of making a few minor adjustments to EL wire connection in subsequent
phases in order to reduce material costs without sacrificing portability.
Phase three: EL wire
When this phase is complete, all the shapes will be present, and can be made to glow in the presence
of a source of electricity (though not to blink). Now it's totally worth schlepping around to events.
Compute length of EL wire needed for the shapes (44' for the cubes, 70' for
Spec out drivers for the EL wire (12v driver that runs 328' should cover the 290' of wire to be used)
Get prices (nearly $800 for materials)
- Raise funds (raised as of Mar. 5, 2012: NIL)
- Buy the materials
- Enlist a legion of
slaves volunteers to solder hundreds of EL wire splices
- Do a test build and make adjustments as necessary
Phase four: Manually controlled blinking
- Lay out/design control panel
- Get buttons, switches, wire, and cabinet material
Phase five: Automated blinking
This is the final phase of the project. Everything else after this is logistics and modifications.
Design and construction details will remain posted in order to enable other people to develop
interesting modifications. Note that the logistics are expected to be difficult.
Draw up a schematic for the blinky logic(here's the SVG file)
Identify necessary components and price them out(details)
- Buy the components
- Breadboard, test, and build the circuits
- Do another complete, running test build