Thursday, July 19, 2012

Torchmate Project # 2: Anchor

Hi there! Its another installment from the Interlochen Summer Studio Tech at the Dow Visual Art Building. Everyday between my busy schedule of moving chairs and tables in various formations, hauling pedestals around for various exhibitions, and laundering aprons, I sit down at the computer of the brand-spanking new Torchmate CNC plasma torch.  It really helps to have something to build that someone wants or needs. That way, there's a mission to complete...instead of making random unusable shapes. 

I was asked to make a small anchor. Similar to the ones I made for my floating sculpture class a year ago. This one is going to look nice, instead of welded out of junk metal, it will be cut from a nice big plate of fresh 5/16" steel. 

Torchmate carving into some 5/16" plate. 

Fresh parts.

After stick welding it together I deburred it with a flapdisc and a bastard file.  Ain't it purty?

OK, so I learned how to cut out an anchor design using the Torchmate CAD. In order to do this I had to convert a .png file into a vector shape. Sounds simple enough, but it wasn't. I only have the guidebook to help and I never learned Illustrator, so this is a bit new.  

Its about 6 inches tall. So, at this size, its more of a grappling hook, but it has this great heavy feel in my its begging to have a rope tied to it and thrown. BATMAN!

I made an anchor out of 16 gauge steel (much much thinner) and showed the kiln tech Chris Reed how to weld it to his slip mixer he built. Now it mixes the bucket of ceramic slip perfectly...and with style.

I'll have to make a few of these before I leave, just to have around the house and in the van in case I need to grapple onto a roof. 

This Torchmate is so handy. 


  1. Wow, Andy that is so fabulous!! Thanks for the post. I should put in an order something cool too.

  2. Andy, will you make me three or four 2-d versions (Without the welded on tab)? I'd like to sell them in our store.

  3. Cool, I know who to turn to when I become a full-time crime fighter. Do you take shape requests?

  4. 2D render of this guy :
    in 1/4" aluminum or 1/16" polished stainless would be serious figurehead for your rig.

    SulliVAN DonoVAN or VANessa?

    1. That would be pretty badass. By rig, do you mean the Vanessa or the Torchmate? What should we name the Torchmate? Thanks for your input!

    2. Heh.
      Meant the van, like a hood ornament.

      or you could do some snaaaaakkeess. ;)

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