Digital DIY helps artisans to produce better products

Here is one more real world example, that is input for our research, of how DiDIY (Digital DIY) reshapes creativity, organization and work, empowering artisans and other professionals to create better tools for their craft, by means of careful mixes of new and old technology and skills:

German design student Steffen Hartwig has created a series of beautifully organic and functional 3D printed ceramics using a self-designed ceramic 3D printer, extruder, and software system. While many advances in ceramic 3D printing today are focused on creating stronger, more technically precise objects than what was previously possible to make by hand, Hartwig’s work stands apart. Though functional and machine-made, the 3D printed pieces are imbued with intentional imperfections, resulting in ambiguous yet alluring artifacts that carry the trace of ceramic’s handcrafted roots.

After 3D printing the objects are treated as any handmade pottery. They dry for a few days then get bisque fired in the electric kiln. After that they are glazed by hand and fired a second time at up to 1250°C. As you can see, this 3D printer is a tool still deeply embedded in traditional workflow and far away from optimizing, accelerating of industrializing the whole process.

This part of the article is also very interesting:

"The hardware is self-designed, but inspired by the many DIY delta printers that already exist. The construction is quite simple, based on widely available components and easily machinable materials. The printer doesn't provide great precision but is optimized for other requirements I had to conquer: a huge printing area of 30 x 30 x 50 cm, strong motors and sturdy construction for moving and accelerating the heavy extruder filled with clay. All the electronics are on the top and far away from the mess on the bed."