Shadowbrook (3d Printed Metal Faucet) by Debbie Drury
2015 - 2016, Platinum A' 3D Printed Forms and Products Design Award Winner
Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD), the design team aimed to recreate the natural movement of water flowing over rocks in a riverbed. This stunning effect was achieved by meticulously adjusting 19 separate waterways. The rest of the faucet styling is extremely pure and simple, to keep the spotlight on the mesmerizing play of the water as it gently cascades over the geometric facets on the spout.
The Shadowbrook is part of the first-ever collection of residential faucets created with Additive Manufacturing (3D printing). While this technique has been used to create plastic prototypes for years, these are the first ready-for-market residential faucets printed in metal. This process opens up exciting possibilities for faucet design and function, enabling avant-garde ways to present water. This faucet recreates the poetic and soothing flow of water bouncing on rocks in a stream.
Design Challenges
The design team aimed to take full advantage of the possibilities of 3D printing with the assignment to ​create a product that was not within existing manufacturing parameters. The goal was to design a range of creative and completely new faucet models that would not be made using traditional manufacturing techniques. The greatest challenge of the Shadowbrook design was the meticulous adjustment of the waterways to achieve the desired effect. The result is a triumph of Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) technology.
Production Technology
The faucet is printed using DMLS (Direct Metal Laser Sintering), a process in which a computer-guided laser beam fuses powdered metal into the desired shape with high heat. A solid metal block gradually arises out of the powder, and is then hand-finished to smooth extraneous metal and reveal the design. In a revival of the tradition of bespoke craftsmanship, the faucet is then hand-finished by an artisan who gives it a rich, fine patina and feel that mimics the texture found on antique silver pieces.
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