Ink Packet Storage Rack

I know that it seems funny to let myself go on a tangent like this right now, but there’s a skill that I want to brush up on. When I’ve got a booth full of prints, I’ll need displays to show them off and allow customers to browse through them. I plan to design and build some gorgeous displays myself if I can remember how to run the design and carving programs that I use for that kind of 3D design.

So, here’s the problem I’m going to solve in this test… When I get into a printing groove I mix up custom colors of ink. If there’s some left on the slab, I wrap it in wax paper and save it for later. The problem is that I now have enough little packets that I don’t remember what is there. For the dark colors, it’s tough to tell what it is without at least partially unwrapping the packet. This takes time and lets in a little air to harden the ink. It’ll be more efficient and the ink will last longer if I don’t have to do that.

 
[Ink Packets]
 
[Design Sketch]

So I decided that I wanter a tall, skinny rack with 12 slots for the major points on the color wheel.

 
[Robot At Work]

After designing it, I laid it out for carving and set the robot carver to work.

 
[Cutting the parts free]

In order for the robot to carve, the pieces have to stay held in place with little “tabs” that I leave in between the otherwise free-floating parts. I have to cut through them with a box cutter to free the parts.

 
[Glued and clamped]

Then I smeared on some glue and clamped it up.

 
[Sanded and installed]

After a little sanding, it’s done and standing in the corner doing its job. Now I can tell what hues of ink I have left over when I need to mix a new color. And, more importantly, I got a refresher on how to plan and design a piece of display hardware in the 3D design and CNC carving programs. Now I can let the design requirements for print displays to percolate in my subconscious while I continue with my printmaking education.

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