Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Made up of wires

Whilst I was fiddling about with the new stash of watch parts, I thought I might try out a slightly different steampunk style make.

Steampunk art, for the most part, involves making something new from something old; often with a touch of the fantastic thrown in for good measure. What it doesn't normally involve is making something modern from something else modern but at the end of its useful life. So that is the focus of this little project. Let me introduce you to one of the reasons I love my PC. This is an ipod shuffle. It doesn't work any more. I went to switch it on one day and it just stopped, no warning, no signs, nothing. Just nothing. To be fair, I've had it years, it's been mightly punished, so it's done well considering the life it's had.

But the frustrating thing is that I don't know why it doesn't work any more as I can't open it to try and fix it. Like most bits of modern machinery, and modern cars for that matter, it is difficult to play with. Although the design is beautiful - and it really really is, it irks people like me who want to see the insides. I want to see how it works.

As this thing it can't be fixed I might as well try and make something out of it. Step one. Disassemble; using such subtle tools as a hammer and a penknife. This isn't an easy task as it's really designed not to be undone. Eventually however, it becomes this.

I'm getting the resin out again, on account of electronic parts not actually being nice things and because I think the smoothness of a resin finish will actually suit what I want to make.

Luckily, the interior board fits very neatly into the rectangular wells on these moulds.

Sticky goo and the usual treatment for burns. I'm suprised I still have fingerprints some days.

I do find when I drop things into resin that I often get tiny gas bubbles appear on the surface. I don't mind in this case as I think the semi-dissolving look suits what I'm doing. You can reduce this effect it by coating the top layer of the object to be inserted with a thin layer of resin first if you want fewer tiny bubbles. It's dry after about 24 hours and just pops out of the mould.

Shearing off the back again to remove that lip you get when resin cures and shrinks a little bit.

I've used a series of tools here - my favorite little spiky wheel and a couple of different polishing tools to smooth off the edges.

Drilling a series of small holes in the top of the pendant. I admit, I screwed up here - the phone went as I was doing this and I shoved the drill down too hard - burring the surface a little around the entry point. I was always taught in tech class at school to drill things like this from the reverse - and now I know why. It's not drastically noticable and I can probably polish it out with a bit of elbow grease.

I don't actually have a pendant bail that will fit over this, so I'm using three silver coloured ball end head pins. I also wanted to add a little of the outer housing to the bail for fun. This is the centre part of the clicky wheel thing - it has a hole drilled in it. It didn't want to play ball and I do have a small burn now because of it - in the end I went low-tech and used a nail and tack hammer to finish the job.

I can connect this in with some head pins - and I've added a few seed beads to match the colours.

Twisting the wire in place and adding some jump rings gives the final product.

I think I might see if I can find a proper bail at some point - but it's a start.


jamfiescreations1 said...

Wow, this is so cool. How creative, I would have never thought to do that.

hannelore_cossins said...

Really nice, I've been thinking about doing stuff like that but haven't had the guts so far... but it really looks like it's worth it!

Sugarmice said...

Awwh, thank you both!

I'm starting to like resin - it's a bit tempremental, but it's a lot of fun! You have time to tweak it which is nice as it takes a while to dry, so there is no rush with it. sarah x