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Rumpus Room is an experiment into fabricating a lightweight Voronoi-based cellular structure with inexpensive off-the shelf components like Schedule 40 PVC pipe, ripstop nylon fabric, and double hook tension springs in addition to lasercut joinery components fabricated from 4-ply chipboard and 1/4” sheet acrylic.

Much development went into the geometry of the cross-locking corner joints that were inserted into the ends of the standard PVC pipe. Optimal geometries, lengths, and material tolerances were taken into account to create a joint that was simple to fabricate and assemble out of cheap sheet material. Joining between cells was made possible with acrylic spacer clips, taking advantage of the inherent flexibility of acrylic to “snap” onto the PVC pipes and hold firmly in place. Automating the design process of unique elements was acheived with a Grasshopper definition that layout and tagged all components according to an intuitive identification scheme, drawing from a very simple schematic Rhino model to generate components.

While any single cell on its own came with some inherent flex due to the materials employed, as the cells were aggregated and sides were doubled, tripled, or quadrupled up the whole system gained rigidity as cells were assembled and added.

The project researches methods of building a complex cellular structure while minimizing the amount of custom fabricated parts, achieving an economy of scale that is not common to most digital fabrication projects that rely on unique elements across the entire structure. 

Fabrication Assistants:
Victoria Buck
Michael Nelson

Assembly Assistants:
Sam Adkisson
Austin Ward

Christina Geros, Greg Spaw, Lee-Su Huang

2014 FALL