Hand MadeHigh Tech Part 3
Polymorph is a type of plastic that can moulded and formed into different things. It’s a thermoplastic, taking the word thermo which means it’s mouldable when heated and approximately at 60-62 degrees. The plastic comes in tiny white pellets in which the polymorph is created from.
I’ve decided to use this material, as its one that I’ve never come across before even not as a designer. I find it very interesting as it’s a plastic that can initially be made from scratch without using heavy chemicals to form it. The flexibility of the material makes it easy and creative to experiment with. When being introduced to this brief, I wanted to research and experiment with a material that was durable and mouldable. So this was the ideal material to use. What I like most about the polymorph is that it’s re-usable. The idea I’ve chosen to look upon is the concept of extending objects. What this means is using the polymorph as a way of extending object or tools in such ways where it will be easier to use or aesthetically more pleasing.
The polymorph pellets are put into hot water and left for a few minutes to absorb the moisture. As the pellets begin to react to the temperature, they start to attract to one another by sticking to each other. As this happens the pellets become transparent and form a plastic substance. Once they are left in for a few minutes, they can be taken out and moulded upon to any desired shape or form. They can also be put into cold water after moulding where the polymorph turns white into a solid plastic.
The material is very tangible and flexible. As well as just using it for shapes, there are many other uses polymorph can be made for. For example prototyping, DIY, tools, handles, fillers, installations, educational purposes, creative forms and many more. An advantage of polymorph is that it can be interacted with objects and other materials. It can also be re-mouldable when heated again.
Ashvin Goolab GDNM Year 3
Hand Made High Tech Development Experimenting When starting the development of this project I began experimenting with my chosen material polymorph and seeing what kind of things it could do. After boiling the pellets, the mould started to form. I added just a few pellets to start with as I just wanted to have a test on the material. After testing the polymorph, i began concentrating on my concept idea which was extending objects. So i started to look for broken tools and other onbjects or ones that i could make more interesting visually. When experimenting with the polymorph, i found it to be very flexible and managable upon removing it from the hot water. Initially my first thought was that if i used a hand full of pellets, that would be enough to mould, but i found that using more made it easier which made a lot more sense. The tools i managed to gather were a mostly associated with DIY. However i didnâ€™t just take one and mould over, i looked it over to see if there was anything i could the polymorph for to fix or make it more visually appealing.
When starting the moulding process, i found that it didnâ€™t stay flexible for a long time. Within five minutes the material began to a white substance which indicated that it was drying. So i had to have constant hot water so i could dip the mould back in order for it to become re-mouldable again. I also tried heating the polymorph to the point where it would turn liquid, however the attempt didnâ€™t work out as the polymorph would only just stick to the pan.
Overall, working with polymorph has been an interesting experience. The material does allow you to create just about any shape you want. The only problem i encountered with it was the fact that it dried a bit too quick when remoing it from hot water.
Ashvin Goolab GDNM Year 3
Published on Jan 13, 2013