The Architectural Model: Exploring scale and vision at the Architecture Centre January 2015

  • December 12, 2014
The Architectural Model: Exploring Scale And Vision At The Architecture Centre January 2015

Exciting news from our workshop in the run up to Christmas – we are busy preparing the next exhibition for the Architecture Centre, and it’s all about one of our favourite topics – yes, that’s right, The architectural model. To develop the display we were asked to reveal the processes behind our craft and share our insight on how an architectural model contributes to design. Of course, it all begins with great design – whether the model is for an architect or even a product prototype – yet when we interrogate their design we have a unique opportunity to help our clients realise their vision. An architectural model – irrespective of its’ key objective, for a competition or planning consultation – always offers the audience something special which a computer generated image (CGI) cannot. With our models, we use a wide range of techniques to capture the essence of a…

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An overview of our CNC machining services

  • November 11, 2014
An Overview Of Our CNC Machining Services

At Amalgam we provide a range of premier CNC machining services. This covers machining forms from client-supplied CAD, to being able to offer a complete end-to-end design and fabrication service. We can develop technical drawings based on conceptual images, machine the parts and assemble the structure, all completely in-house. We can also arrange for transportation and installation of larger projects, as we did with the range of EDF Energy interactives. Beyond simply being a cutting tool for sheet material, we are constantly developing new and better techniques for using the CNC within our workshop. In this article we’ll be going over some of these applications, which in turn are services we can offer our clients. Substructure Design and Fabrication This Rooftop Yurt was one of three constructed for the Timber Frame Company as an interlocking skeleton of ribs cut from sheets of plywood. The structure was then skinned with timber and copper creating a sealed environment. By…

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Educational models by Amalgam on show in Bristol

  • October 22, 2014
Educational Models By Amalgam On Show In Bristol

Making an exhibition of ourselves? Bristol’s Architecture Centre, on the waterfront quay by the Arnolfini, is currently showing Desire Lines: Romance and Rationalism in Bridge Design until Sunday 16 November. The Centre gave us the brief to create a set of educational models with which visitors – especially children – could interact and experiment with types of bridge design. So, the exhibition features three bridge building kits, designed and constructed here in Amalgam’s workshop. The aim is to inspire visitors with the diversity of bridge building techniques, as well as provide an historical background as part of Bristol’s Bridge 150 celebrations. Unique to this display, the Architecture Centre and Amalgam devised a set of top trumps cards – to add a fun and memorable element into the exhibition display – as well as offering a bridge drawing competition for the junior visitors. Also on show, back  in Bristol after several…

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3D Printing: in with new, but not out with the old

  • October 9, 2014
3D Printing: In With New, But Not Out With The Old

We are booking tours of our workshop, starting 23 October and 6 November. If you are interested in 3D printing, call us on 0117 924 9596 or read on to register. 3D printing has had a broadly publicised impact on building design, due to a wider availability of larger volume printers. Architects are now predicting an exciting new phase where whole or part structures can be printed much faster than construction by traditional methods. Two of these newspaper stories feature our distinguished clients, Foster + Partners and Zaha Hadid. Usually, we would be far more comfortable designing and making a bandwagon, rather than jumping on it. However we've learned some lessons with our beloved Objet 350 we thought worth sharing for more diverse companies in Bristol and the south-west who want to benefit. Our experience 3D printing architectural models Amalgam director Chris Conlon elaborates, "In any application, improved accuracy will…

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Architectural Modelmaking book features Amalgam Modelmaking’s work

  • September 15, 2014
Architectural Modelmaking Book Features Amalgam Modelmaking’s Work

Architectural Modelmaking by Nick Dunn is a book, now in its second edition, with a self-explanatory title.  Amalgam Modelmaking is delighted to have contributed several articles and examples to this new edition of Nick Dunn's textbook on the subject of.... Well Architectural Modelmaking! Nick Dunn is Professor of Urban Design at Lancaster University. His primary research interests are in the fields of visualization, modelling, mapping, representation in architecture, infrastructure and urbanism.  One reviewer stated that the book is an "Indispensable guide for any student of architecture or the built environment".  We of course are very proud to have been featured so heavily in what seems to be recognised as the "Go-to" publication for architectural students and others who wish to develop their model making skills. According to publishers Laurence King The book provides "A practical and effective guide to how and why models are used, in addition to what they…

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New Marine Models at Hamburg SMM Show

  • September 15, 2014

The last few months have yielded some fantastic and challenging projects, including innovative furniture, several new Marine models, strange creatures and new possibilities opening up with our packaging design service.   The SMM in Hamburg, Germany wrapped up last week, where two of our models were on display. The first was the HF4 model for Mojo Maritime, featuring a huge loading crane system and smaller knuckle cranes.   The Swath model for Qinetiq features a unique baseboard design incorporating the 'sea' as a structural support for the model, indicating the position of the vessel in the water. The reflective baseboard shows the detail below the waterlines, including locomotive elements and the complex forms of the hull.   Both models were fabricated with a combination of advanced computer controlled processes and hand-finishing skills, particularly to preserve the sharp lines and broad, unbroken planes of colour of the designs. These models add to…

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Not the Commonwealth Games Baton – but still….

  • August 6, 2014
Not The Commonwealth Games Baton – But Still….

We cannot claim to have designed or made the Queen’s Baton for the recent Commonwealth Games (Even though a part of it was 3D printed).  Nor the iconic 2012 Olympic torch. But at Amalgam we are proud to have made our own version – after a fashion… Every year supermarket chain Morrison's staff vote for a worthwhile cause to be the company’s charity partner to benefit from their ‘Raise a Smile’ programme. This year’s charity is Sue Ryder, an organisation that provides incredible care for people who are diagnosed with life a changing illness. As a part of the companies fund-raising efforts M Local stores arranged a 24 hour relay race, each leg being completed on a different and unusual form of transport and at each hand-over our specially created “Apple Baton” was handed over. OK so we didn’t carry a message from The Queen, or visit 71 nations along…

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BBC Sport Tabletop Footballers, Wall Insulation Models and Otters

  • June 26, 2014
BBC Sport Tabletop Footballers, Wall Insulation Models And Otters

We are currently making set 15 of our popular Wall Insulation models! These engaging display units were designed in-house by project manager Phillip Harris and we have been trickling them out at a steady rate for the last three years. The models show three methods for improving energy efficiency and cutting down on home fuel costs, by adding insulative materials to the cavity walling and exterior faces of a modern home. Initially made for the Centre for Sustainable Energy, these educational display models have caught the eye of a number of other clients and we have been making them as sets-to-order ever since. Typically in our industry, each model we make is a bespoke piece, designed and built to the client's individual specifications.   Exhibition and display projects this month include the Mini MRF, a Compost Corner video interactive and cutaway compost bin - all more made-to-order items from our Recycling Displays trading arm. These…

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Architecture Exhibitions and Chimps

  • May 23, 2014
Architecture Exhibitions And Chimps

Installed at the Architecture Centre down on Bristol Waterfront, the Living City is an interactive architecture exhibition where an analogy is drawn between the city and a human body. Users are encouraged to think about what is needed to create a balanced, healthy urban environment.   The centrepiece for this exhibition is a model we made for the Center for Sustainable Energy some time ago; in its original context the PlanLoCal model shows how various low carbon technologies can be installed in rural and urban settings. In its new role in this exhibition, the model features an interactive element, where users can place magnetic icons along the sides of the base to highlight key points within the 'city-body', such as energy, transport and recycling. The exhibition also features key documents and case studies, and runs until the 10th of August. You can see some images up on the Architecture Centre's Facebook page. Be…

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Tidal Turbines, Milan Design Week and Brutalism

  • April 14, 2014
Tidal Turbines, Milan Design Week And Brutalism

This week we have been ramping up the marketing of our recycling displays and have been taking orders for a few products from the range; as these projects are completed we will be updating the website with photos of these new builds. These engaging and informative displays are usually used by councils and recycling officers to communicate important information about recycling.   Also our SeaGen Tidal Turbine for MCT has been in the news this week. This popular model has made a few media appearances over the years and has so far survived nearly four years of touring and public engagement.   We are also enjoying the trickle of photos coming out of Milan Design Week which have made their way into various Twitter feeds and photoblogs, showcasing the range of product design this year has to offer. Another event in our calendar that we're looking forward to is the…

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