It is hard to believe that it was almost ten years ago I witnessed a CNC router in action for the very first time. I was fascinated and simply had to have one! Although I had been in the creative end of the three dimensional sign business for most of my life I didn't really know what I would do with one of these machines - but I just knew it could do fantastic stuff.

Along with the CNC router I discovered the wonderful material called Precision Board and the glues, primers and other companion products they offer. Since then we have gone through many tons of the material using it in most signs and projects we tackle. This journal will chronicle our many adventures both past, present and future. I'll talk from the perspective of someone who pushes these products to the creative limit on a daily basis. I'll be adding to the stories two or three times each week. -dan

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The magic of mud!

One of the many things we teach at our workshops is how we mix our special formulas of fiberglass reinforced concrete. It is designed and proven to trowel on easily and be super strong. It also carves easily - or at least much easier than regular concrete. Each student is allowed to try their hand at this task.

Then the fun begins. We start with the easy task... troweling concrete on a flat board. All did well at this task and their confidence grew immediately. These concrete covered boards were carved (when they had cured enough) to practicethe various styles and techniques.

Then it was time for a more advanced challenge. The students worked in teams of two, first welding up a sturdy armature, then applying the glavanized wire using specialized tools. 

The concrete coating was the next step. I did a quick demonstration to show how it was done... and then the real fun began.

The vertical areas were easy. As our students worked downward it quickly became evident that it would take more than a little practice to master this part of the job. For a first time effort they did remarkably well.
The upside down parts proved to be a little trickier.
The concrete was allowed to cure until it was perfect to carve. We'll show the delightful result and a lot more creativity in the next post.
-grampa dan