Maker Series: Jesse Duclos

Jesse Duclos, a BCV Job Captain, is moonlighting as a furniture designer. His latest piece was made in response to a personal need, as his library is growing! The individual elements were CNC’d at the Tech Shop in SF out of walnut and maple ply. Going forward, he would love to turn it into a prototype for a small venture, allowing customers to choose different wood and pattern options to customize their piece. On the design process Jesse states:

“My workflow consisted of building the piece 3-dimensionaly in Rhino and then parametrically linking the pieces to be cut to the pieces in the 3D model.  As I made changes to the model and the design they were automatically updated on the cut file ensuring that my final output would exactly match the intended design.  This not only expedited the process but it also made the final result more accurate with less of a likelihood that a coordination error would occur.  I love how in a few hours you can go from a design in a computer to a physical cut piece of wood; it makes custom pieces approachable and very affordable.”

While it sounds effortless, he mentions a few things inherent to the digital fabrication process to keep in mind:

“The biggest learning curve was probably realizing the amount of planning that went in before I could start cutting.  I envisioned the process being very smooth to get from digital file to cut piece but there were tons of little details that needed attention: grain direction, part placement (to ensure max use of material and correct grain direction), exact thickness of plywood varied, and the general tolerances and abilities of the machine itself. “