For our 2D/3D camp we have been giving the campers platonic solids to build shapes out of to assist with the understanding of taking something 2D and transforming it to 3D. Diana and I use the laser cutters at the Larry Sears and Sally Zlotnick Sears think[box] to cut out paper triangles for the lesson.
In its new location, Case Western Reserve University’s think[box] is located in a 7-story building on campus. Three floors are currently being used, and more of the floors will be undergoing renovation soon so that they can be open to the public. It is one of the largest innovations centers in the world that is run through a university and averages 5000 visits every month.
There is a lot of equipment at think[box], including but not limited to, 3D printers, Makerbot 3D printers, soldering stations, vinyl cutter, sewing/embroidery machine, a full metal shop and wood shop, and 4 laser cutters which we have been using to cut the platonic solids out. The laser cutters can run at up to 120 Watts, can etch and cut wood, certain plastic, paper, matt board, leather and even more. When something is etched on the laser cutter it will burn semi-lightly through the surface and when something is cut it is burned all the way through the material to make the cut.
This process can take a long time if you are working large scale or are etching something complex but it is worth it for its phenomenal accuracy and precision. The machine makes our job of cutting the platonic solids go much faster and more accurately than if we cut out 7,000 of them by hand. Think[box] is a wonderful place and is open to the public all year round, check out their website below!