3d scanning: making duplicates
This key chain is finished and ready to be gifted. But before it was assembled, the Kid Jeweler element was 3D scanned to make Mini pendants for both Kid Jeweler Ava and her mom. The first step in scanning is having the finished piece ready to digitally image.
The scanner camera cannot see fine detail on a reflective surface so the pieces need to be air-brushed to be a non-reflective, matte finish. We use a water-soluble paint that is easily removed after scanning. Here two finished Kid Jeweler creations dry and await scanning.
The painted piece is fixed to a rotating arm in the path of the scanner camera (at the top right corner of this image). The camera shoots high-resolution images of the piece as it rotates on the arm. Through a succession of hundreds of images, the camera is able to ‘see’ all the details of the piece. The scanner then stitches together the images creating a unified, 360 degree, high-res 3D image.
The scanned result is can then be manipulated in a CAD (Computer Assisted Design) program and scaled or modified as requested. The result is then 3D printed and cast using the same lost wax process as detailed in our casting story.
At left is the original Kid Jeweler piece. The purple piece is a reduced and printed wax made from the 3D scanned data. On the right are a Kid Jeweler Mini in 14 karat gold and sterling silver cast from printed waxes that are ready for gifting to our maker Ava and her mom.
Now that the piece has been scanned, we can print copies infinitely if Ava’s family ever wants another.