FLA Week 3: Biomaterials - SCOPES Digital Fabrication

Lesson Details

Age Ranges
Fab-Safety.1, Fab-Modeling.1, Fab-Fabrication.1

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Juha Pöykkö
K-12 teacher


1.      Under instructor’s guidance, we made molds with Inkscape, from hdf using laser cutter. Then we made the solution with agar-agar as told in presentation. My try was mostly spilled on the table due to my careless handling of the mold. I managed to get pretty good layer of solution in the mold. The baking paper, which was put between the mold layers, wrinkled duo the dampness and my first material was uneven. The material dried seven days. When handling, the material ripped easily. We tried to weld it. We tried with several power and speed values, and managed to get a weld-like seam. This turned out to be more glue-like seam, as dampness in material attached pieces together. The laser dried the seam, too.

2.      At home, I mixed a solution of leftover coffee, water and gelatin. Gelatin sheets must be handled differently than gelatin powder: I put sheets to small amount of cold water to soften them. After this, I varmed liquid to boiling temperature and shut off the stove. Then I squeezed off the excess water from gelatin sheets and mixed them to hot liquid. I poured the solution to an improvised mold and on a galvanized steel plates. Plates was salvaged from an old toaster. Mold edges are pine, covered with plastic packaging tape. Solution on the plate without edges started to spill on the baking paper… The thin layer edges started to dry quickly, and it was difficult to get it off the plate next day. I could separate the thicker material quite easily, when it was still relatively soft. Now I’ll wait until the material is dried. Then, I’ll have a few pieces of coffee-coloured gelatin… 🙂

What You'll Need

The Instructions




  • (Fab-Safety.1): I can safely conduct myself in a Fab Lab and observe operations under instructor guidance.
  • (Fab-Modeling.1): I can arrange and manipulate simple geometric elements, 2D shapes, and 3D solids using a variety of technologies.
  • (Fab-Fabrication.1): I can follow instructor guided steps that link a software to a machine to produce a simple physical artifact.

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