The business invested in a new Roland DG MODELA MDX-50 – to work alongside Smoart’s existing MODELA MDX-40A 3D milling machine – for the rapid, yet precise, creation of innovative, vibrant and contemporary artwork. Sandra and her team use Roland DG’s 3D milling machines for two purposes: firstly, to make prototypes for designs; and secondly, to directly mill into materials – predominantly wood – to create wall panels. Sandra uses Rhino 3D software to design her work, combined with Picasoft’s Mayka software which translates her designs into a cut path.
Sandra Owens first came across Roland DG technology when she was studying for an MA degree in Contemporary Crafts at Coventry University. She explains: “I had a very positive experience using the Roland DG MDX40a milling machine whilst at University and it was a natural progression to continue with the technology when I started up my own business. I liked the simplicity of the tool and the very precise finish. Roland DG 3D milling machines are incredibly intuitive and straightforward to use.”
Roland DG’s benchtop MODELA MDX-50 mills an impressive variety of materials to produce models, moulds, jigs, parts, prototypes and more, with smooth surface detail. The Roland DG MDX-50 can produce large single objects or batch produce smaller multiple parts – making it ideal for a host of applications. The MDX-40A benchtop CNC machine, which Smoart purchased in 2011, has a slightly smaller maximum work area, so Sandra tends to use this machine to mill smaller pieces of artwork.
Sandra explains: “I needed the newer Roland DG Modela MDX-50 primarily to make larger pieces. The automatic tool changer also meant that I did not have to wait around in between stages of jobs - and time is my most precious resource. The additional Roland DG milling machine has also increased my output of work so I can meet the demands of my ever-increasing customer base.
Both 3D milling machines were purchased from Patrick Thorn & Co., Roland DG UK Ltd.’s premier consultant for the range of Roland DG 3D products within the UK. On working with the extended Roland team, Sandra concludes: “Patrick has been incredibly helpful; he really is the font of all knowledge when it comes to Roland! He’s very friendly, helps to solve any issues I encounter, and makes suggestions on how I can improve the way I use the machines.”
Sandra Owens’ work can be viewed in Roland DG UK’s Creative Centre in Clevedon, which brings together a distinctive collection of creative works from top Roland DG artists and craftspeople from around the world.
For more information on the Creative Centre, please visit: www.rolanddg.co.uk/gallery/online-creative-center
For more information about Smoart, please visit www.smoart.com.