Give me a Welder and Rod Stock and I’ll Build you the World

Metal fabrication is a an art that often goes under appreciated. The ability to take common stock in the form of sheet, pipe (square or round), and in this case rod, and make it into anything is intoxicating for the artist and super villain inside of each of us. Recently [asciiArtVandaly] took on an interesting job and was thoughtful enough to make a photo album of the process. He literally created the world out of metal.

The build is a wire-frame globe. The latitude and longitude rods are rolled to the proper arc, but holding them in place is a bit of a trick. This image shows the welding jig built just for this project. It has large and small nobs to match the increasing spacing of the rods, with washers holding down ever other joint. If you want to see an example of rod-rolling check out the unrelated How It’s Made segment found after the break.

This jig is visually stunning to look at, but the math used to lay something like this out is only mildly interesting compared to the work done to add the continents to the piece. Each of these were cut out and then hand hammered to match the curve of the globe before being welded in place and outfitted with lighting for cities. That’s a skill you can’t get without a lot of practice — and get this, [asciiArtVandalay] does it as a hobby. Who knew robot engineers needed hobbies?

The finished globe is about eighty pounds of stainless steel. The build ends up being corporate art for a company sure to turn [Tyler Durden’s] eye.

[via Reddit]

27 thoughts on “Give me a Welder and Rod Stock and I’ll Build you the World

        1. They were done with a pyramid roller. I wish I would’ve known this was gonna blow up, I would’ve included more photos.

          Capturing the rolled rings and then cutting them to a known dimension required another jig I made out of plywood.

      1. There’s a bit of rod he could’ve welded Kent to, and we’re not a heavy island. He could’ve done it. Even if it’s off half a degree, better than absent. Or does this “corporation” know something about the future than we don’t?

        1. Sure, if I had an extra $50-100k kickin around. I built a 4×8 CNC plasma a number of years ago and used that. That’s actually how I started doing stuff like this. I had spent ~$5000 building the CNC and when finished thought, “now what in the heck am I gonna do with this.”

          Like the article says, for me this is a bit of a hobby, one I’ve been trying to turn into a full time gig for a while now. Maybe one day I’ll be able to afford a water jet or 1+KW laser, until then, I’ll just continue dreaming =).

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