Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

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sparr
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Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby sparr » Thu Feb 04, 2016 3:33 pm

Here's a video on Youtube of what happens when you let ball chain pull itself out of a container: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_dQJBBklpQQ

Here's a rough sketch of my idea to make a machine that repeats this demonstration, back and forth between two containers: https://i.imgur.com/bZSN8Mv.png

I like engineering / physics / mechanics demonstrations. I think they stand alone. However, part of the burner culture norms that I've never been able to accomplish is to take something like this and paste some art-y theme onto it. I come to you, eplaya, in hopes of some artistic inspiration. What theme might I apply to this device to make it more artistically interesting?
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Re: Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby Meat Hunter » Thu Feb 04, 2016 3:56 pm

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Re: Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby Bless » Thu Feb 04, 2016 4:22 pm

Just paste some sacred geometry on it for decoration.

I'm a little confused over the purpose of the art piece. Is it kind of like a slinky demonstration but with metal beads?
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Re: Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby AntiM » Thu Feb 04, 2016 4:36 pm

Will it be on a pedestal or base?
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Re: Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby BoyScoutGirl » Thu Feb 04, 2016 6:48 pm

SCIENCE! is theme enough, especially this year.

Seriously, if you can get that thing to work like I'm imagining, I would be seriously impressed by it and probably play with it for at least 10 minutes. Few things are as "magical" and compelling to me as a demonstration of the unexpected wonders of the universe (i.e., physics). No need to spray-paint it gold or make it steampunk.

If you can devise a way to keep it all running on-playa, you'll be ahead of probably half of the moving-part art out there. Keep it simple!
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Re: Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby BBadger » Thu Feb 04, 2016 7:23 pm

If you can make the chains have lights in them it'd almost look like a particle geyser shooting a stream at night. You could also light it up from below, maybe with some sort of strobe effect. It'd look like some moving, floating rope
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Re: Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby sparr » Fri Feb 05, 2016 12:34 am

Bless wrote:Just paste some sacred geometry on it for decoration.
I am occasionally tempted to take this easy way out. I do like geometric art, and have fun with procedural generation of the same.

Bless wrote:I'm a little confused over the purpose of the art piece. Is it kind of like a slinky demonstration but with metal beads?
Yes, very much like a slinky demonstration platform. The effect is a lot more interesting than a slinky's function, though.

AntiM wrote:Will it be on a pedestal or base?
I hadn't planned to make a base any larger than its footprint, assuming I can anchor it. Adding a base for use without anchoring is definitely doable.

BoyScoutGirl wrote:Seriously, if you can get that thing to work like I'm imagining, I would be seriously impressed by it and probably play with it for at least 10 minutes.
I'm thinking something like 3 miles of #1 chain will fit in a 5gal bucket, and that might run for 20+ minutes per flip. I'll be doing test runs with a bunch of different sizes of chain and depths of container to find the best balance of visual effect and duration.

BBadger wrote:If you can make the chains have lights in them it'd almost look like a particle geyser shooting a stream at night. You could also light it up from below, maybe with some sort of strobe effect. It'd look like some moving, floating rope
I do plan to paint part of the chain white, in some patterns that will produce interesting effects. adding a UV strobe on it at night will intensify the effects.
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Re: Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby trilobyte » Fri Feb 05, 2016 8:46 am

I'm giving this a nudge over to Building Art Installations, since that's a better fit for project questions (where the year-specific boards are intended more for announcing fully formed projects).

That said... COOL!

I'd be wary of wanting to paint or decorate the ball chain, since anything you add to the chain's surface could affect the balance of mass/weight and interfere with the awesomeness of the demo. A couple things you could consider - look around online for different colored chain. You could maybe mix up the colors to create some interesting or artful patterns as the chain goes flying through. Or use a white chain, which you could hit with colored (or even UV) light for night-time displays. Aside from that, you could look at ways to 'dress the stage' - instead of simple containers you could use garish flower pots, or snake-charmer baskets, or who knows what. Obligatory random picture of containers below...

Image

Yeah, they're probably not ideal containers, but you get the idea. You could theme things up pretty easily, either riffing on this year's renaissance theme or rocking whatever you think is cool.

If you haven't already done so, you should check out the post about the Piazza on the Burning Man Journal. Your engineering demo sounds like it might be a great fit for the piazza...

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Re: Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby maladroit » Fri Feb 05, 2016 12:08 pm

The mistake is thinking that you have to conform to some "arty norm" in the first place. Bring your shit and if it's cool people will totally get it.

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Re: Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby misfit » Fri Feb 05, 2016 12:18 pm

nice work Sparr... verrrry cool.....
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Re: Help me art-ify my engineering demo project?

Postby BBadger » Sat Feb 06, 2016 2:23 am

sparr wrote:I do plan to paint part of the chain white, in some patterns that will produce interesting effects. adding a UV strobe on it at night will intensify the effects.


That'll look pretty good as the chain is moving! In addition to white, and if you're using a true black light in the 365nm range, there are also some nice fluorescent dyes in different colors you could use as well. Some even paint on clear under normal lights.
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