Raccoon Tracks

Over the summer of 2016, the Clark Art Institute came to the Makerspace for help. For their exhibit Sensing Place: Reflecting On Stone Hill at the Lunder Center on Stone Hill, they needed molds of raccoon paws to make a plaster cast of raccoon footprints. However, they only had molds of the raccoon’s right front and right back paws, and they needed molds of the raccoon’s left front and left back paws to complete the set.

We were able to help out by scanning the two footprint molds that the Clark Art Institute owned using the David Scanner. The scans were 3D models of the two molds which could be opened in Rhinoceros and then reflected to create a mirrored replica.

After creating a set of four 3D models using the scanning and modeling technology that we have, we used the Form 1+ printer to print the models out. The Form 1+ printer, which uses liquid resin, produced prints with the smooth texture required for the molds.

However, after two prints, there was not enough liquid resin to print an additional two sets of footprints that the Clark needed. To improvise, we mobilized the Makerspace’s remaining two printers, the MakerGear M2 and LulzBot TAZ 5. We used these printers to print the remaining footprints, applied the liquid resin on the surface of the prints, and left them to cure under the sun, allowing us to successfully recreate the smooth texture of the original prints.

Sensing Place: Reflecting On Stone Hill is on exhibit until October 10, 2016. Stop by to check out the Makerspace’s contribution to the exhibit!