Date: Jul 24, 2010
Title: Cutting The Face Of Time - The Melting Grandfather Clock
Control Waterjet Cutting, a Chesterfield based company, were commissioned to help produce parts for a very unusual melting clock sculpture...
Control Waterjet Cutting, a Chesterfield based company, were commissioned to help produce parts for a very unusual melting clock sculpture. The Melting Clock, part of a range of limited series, was at first individually fabricated by its creator Mark Avis, a sculptor and artist from Mark Avis Designs & Sculptures Ltd of The Time House, a Grantham based company. Influenced by Gaudi and Spanish surrealist, Dali, the initial clock, Gaia, possesses an extraordinary melting effect, reflecting nature’s cycle and the immortality of time itself. Building on the popularity of ‘Gaia’, a range of limited editions was created - ‘Phoenix’, ‘Apollo’, ‘Zeus’; ‘Titan’ and most recently ‘Cronus’, each new series being distinctively individual. With each piece being crafted by hand and a growing order book Mark quickly found that creating the clocks by hand presented a problem - he only has one pair of hands! The challenge was how to keep the distinctive individuality of each clock while producing them in small production runs. A method or process had to be found for producing the clocks while keeping their uniqueness. The solution was found through the use of the specialist pattern making and casting services of J C Balmforth and the skills of Control Waterjet Cutting’s engineers. Commenting on the production process for the clocks, Stewart Ellis, Managing Director of J C Balmforth, a midlands based pattern making and casting company with a long history and heritage, said, “It is a complex design with lots of distortion and cracking. The clocks are made from cast aluminium. They are modular with the various parts being cast, cut using waterjet technology and sent to Mark for assembly and finishing. The cutting on the face and body, that gives the cracking effect, presented us with a challenge. We could not use laser cutting due to the thickness of the materials. We could have cut by hand but this would have been very costly. After investigating the alternatives we commissioned Control Waterjet Cutting. They developed the process to cut the clock faces and produced samples. The cutting was very fine and gave us the perfect solution.” Marcus Wilkinson, proprietor of The Time House, said, “We are very happy with the quality of the work both Balmforth and Control Waterjet Cutting produce. Mark is constantly creating new pieces that require ever more demanding and innovative approaches to their production. It is important to us that the quality and individuality of the art is maintained. Both Control Waterjet Cutting and Balmforth have continually excelled in this area. Control Waterjet provided innovative and creative solutions to cutting the clock faces that allowed us to proceed with the casting process. We are now moving the design into a range of clocks that will have waterjet cutting all over them producing a far greater melting effect.” If you have a complex cutting requirement or would like to have further information regarding Waterjet’s capabilities please call Ian Macpherson, Sales Director of Control Waterjet Cutting, on 01246 284000.