Laser Cut 3D Sculptures Remind Us Of An Old Playstation

[Paul] a.k.a. [VoidFraction] put up the source and documentation for his sculptures made with laser cut polygons.

For computing his triangles, [Paul] developed LcAgl, an algorithm that transforms a 3D model into the AutoCAD file needed to cut a whole bunch of triangles and connectors. This file was shot over to a laser cutter and after a confusing assembly, [Paul] can make just about any low polygon count model he wants.

For his sculptures, [Paul] uses Coroplast, a type of corrugated plastic commonly used in political campaign signs. Coroplast is lightweight and flexible, a bonus when [Paul] is fitting his triangles together. The connecting tabs are made from acrylic – a very rigid material, so the triangles are held tightly in place.

Since the models in most 3D games are just a bunch of polygons anyway, this technique reminds us of the first 3D console games. [Paul]’s rhino looks like it walked off the set of a low polygon game like Virtua Fighter or Jumping Flash!.

21 thoughts on “Laser Cut 3D Sculptures Remind Us Of An Old Playstation”

1. nexekho says:

Why confusing? Figure out an order to put the pieces together in, and engrave a number on each edge. Go sequentially, find matching numbers, hey, you just mixed the jigsaw and the dot-to-dot!

1. Hackerspacer says:

You could also tab the parts and break them apart only when you are ready to put them together.

2. Paul Kinsky says:

Exactly, our laser cutter supports vector etching as well as cutting. When the connectors and faces are generated, its complete with laser-etched tags for assembly

3. This would be great for comic-cons…make yourself look just like your favorite 16-bit character…but held together by plastic strips.

1. Pilotgeek says:

Now which 16 bit system was known for its 3D polygons?

1. I suppose you might argue that the 32X was 32bit, but it was really just a genesis add-on…and it had the best version of Virtua Fighter ever made.

2. ddh819 says:

Genesis had Vectorman!

3. nexekho says:

Never played a 3D SNES game? Starfox, Stunt FX Racing?

4. Pilotgeek says:

I’ve certainly played 3D SNES games, and thought about that before posting. However, the system itself could not handle polygons. The cartridges for those special games had a small ~25mhz RISC cpu called the SuperFX that handled the 3D.

4. Hackerspacer says:

Combine this with OGLE and start making pretty much anything from any modern game (World of Warcraft anyone?)

5. Hackerspacer says:

Needs to be able to handle quads not just poly meshes.

Also – Minecraft.

1. draeath says:

Quads are not difficult. I imagine you forget the fact that Quads are actually built from pairs of tris?

6. CB4 says:

This is awesome,
I was waiting for just this invention.

I make props and I love the way this will enable me to build new things.
Not just props but also buildings backdrops and structures.

I would like to applaud the maker and thank him wholeheartly for his work and even moreso for sharing it with the world :D

7. zokier says:

Maybe I’m missing something, but wouldn’t it make a lot more sense to have the connectors *inside* the sculpture?

1. Hackerspacer says:

Sure, if you happen to manage to invent a laser cutter that is able to do such a thing. This process is limited by the flat geometry a laser cutter can produce. Which is why you see the connectors.

1. CB4 says:

I don’t get it, why can’t you put the tags on the inside? I think the connectors don’t need to be shaped otherwise.

2. andar_b says:

I would guess those connectors are H shaped, showing on both the inside AND the outside.

8. Dan Fruzzetti says:

I have to agree with everyone shouting “StarFox”

9. Jeff Wyman says:

I looked at the polygon acrylic and I thought “hey someone at my school is doing the same thing!” then I find out it IS someone at WPI…

COOL.

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