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MAKER: CAD + 3D Printing + Mold-Making: How to Create Custom Sterling Silver Pendants

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2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015





Conference Session

Make It!

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Tagged Topic


Page Count


Page Numbers

26.1112.1 - 26.1112.12



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Paper Authors


Lauren Jatana Vathje University of Calgary

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Vathje is a mechanical engineering grad student whose research focuses on community engaged learning in engineering education. In addition to service learning, Vathje is inspired by creativity, design and the maker culture.

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Marjan Eggermont University of Calgary

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Marjan Eggermont is the current Associate Dean (Student Affairs) and a Senior Instructor and faculty member at the University of Calgary in the Mechanical and Manufacturing department of the Schulich School of Engineering, University of Calgary. She teaches graphical, written and oral communication in their first Engineering Design and Communication course taught to all incoming engineering students.
She co-founded and designs ZQ, an online journal to provide a platform to showcase the nexus of science and design using case studies, news, and articles.
As an instructor, she was one of the recipients of The Allan Blizzard Award, a Canadian national teaching award for collaborative projects that improve student learning in 2004. In 2005, she was one of the recipients of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers Curriculum Innovation Award. She is - as PIC II chair - currently a board member of ASEE.

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Bob Brennan University of Calgary

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MAKER: CAD + 3d Printing + Casting: How to Create Custom Sterling Silver PendantsThere are many beautiful aspects to the Maker culture. The fact that each one of us havebeen empowered to make almost anything we can think of - our ideas no longer have tolive in our dreams and sketch books.The maker themed project I will be pursuing is creation of sophisticated self-madesterling silver jewelry through CAD, rapid prototyping, molding and casting. I am anengineer who finds myself missing creative, beautiful hands on projects. Through out thelast year or two, I have been able to weave together a few discrete events to develop thisconcept for a Maker project. The first introduction that I had to maker culture was when Iwent to the –local- Maker faire in 2012 where I was astonished by the fact that the personin front of me was the person who made the item in front of me. There, I had also fallenin love with 3d printers and all the possibilities they entail. I was also drawn to the ‘fairgoods’ booth that lead me to learn about precious metal clay in jewelry making( Many months later, I went to a maker night at the local science center,where they were giving a molding/casting lesson. Finally all the ideas and concepts cametogether in my mind – I must first use CAD to design a unique beautiful pendant, 3d printit, polish the print, cast it in silicone, use precious metal clay in the mold and finally put itin a mini-kiln to create a sophisticated custom designed pendant for a necklace.Preliminary Maker Project Outline1) Conceive Idea2) CAD design (Rhino, AutoCad and/or solidworks)3) 3d printing4) Fill and polish the5) Create Mold6) Cast with Precious Metal Clay7) Fire the object in the kilnI have established the process for this project in my mind and sketchbook, but have yet totry it out at our local makerspace. I plan to gather a student group to join me and go to bi-weekly to try out this project (and other projects if they so choose!). The poster willoutline final actual steps of this project and any lessons learned along the way.The value of this project is that a jewelry project may bring more undergraduate womento maker spaces. Jewelry is also a common conversation topic between women, whichmeans more dialogue between women about the amazing intersection of creativity,design and engineering processes. Of course this opportunity provides engineeringundergrads of all demographics the chance to work with their hands and exposure tomethods and tools. One final benefit of maker projects in general is the inherent shiftaway from mindless consumerism due to the effort that is put into crafting our ownpossessions.

Jatana Vathje , L., & Eggermont, M., & Brennan, B. (2015, June), MAKER: CAD + 3D Printing + Mold-Making: How to Create Custom Sterling Silver Pendants Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24449

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