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Architectural sheetmetal All types of architectural sheetmetal and methods to make them

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Old 02-16-2012, 06:12 PM
csedan csedan is offline
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Default Pleated perforated lamp shades

Hello all, I am looking for some guidance here. I have a client who has approached me to do a number of these lamps for a large hotel... the thing is I have never made anything like this and really have little knowledge on how to do it. I believe the material to be a thin perf sheet stock and not fabric even though I find the "gathering" at the top and base to be indicative of that. I have done a little research on the original designer (French, from the 50's) and a lot of his pieces use perforated sheet.
The thinnest sheet, however, I have found from McNichols with similar openings is 26 gauge. Does it seem at all possible to attain this form out of a sheet of that gauge? I imagine, and looks evident in one of the pictures that there is a thin armature in the valleys of the shade. Any ideas on construction methods to attain the volume out of the pleated sheet?
Much appreciated.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Perf lights #4.jpg (94.1 KB, 420 views)
File Type: jpg Perf Lights #1.jpg (54.9 KB, 419 views)
File Type: jpg Perf Lights #2.jpg (78.1 KB, 421 views)

Last edited by csedan; 02-16-2012 at 08:11 PM.
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Old 02-16-2012, 09:38 PM
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Hotrod1932 Hotrod1932 is offline
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Boy John I have got to admit I've never seen anything quite like those. Did you get to see and get hands on with one of the examples you were asked to reproduce/create ? If so can or did you get a chance to mic one of them ?

My first thought is some kind of a fine wire frame for shape and/or to work the sheet over. If it was not to be left in place ( which I don't see in the 1st picture ) it would have to be made something like an umbrella that could be opened to form over, and then collapsed to remove it threw the bottom opening. Just thinking out loud!

I'm sure some of our really talented metal sculptors will have some better ideas, stay tuned.

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Old 02-16-2012, 11:57 PM
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TheRodDoc TheRodDoc is offline
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Location: Iowa
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It would be work for a die.

Something like this. The sheet tube would be a slightly larger dia. then the dia. of the inside edge of the strips.
As the top die comes down it starts all the pleats. ( I should have rounded off the starting edges of all strips)

As they move together all the pleats are drawn closer together as the sheet pushes into the die.. Proceeds till sheet stops at the tube stop where all strips meet it. No inner form or die should be needed. You would have to experiment some. As far as how much shape can be made.

This isn't a for sure method but it is a very educated guess.

shade press.jpg
The Rod Doctor,

Richard Crees
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Old 02-17-2012, 03:40 AM
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Dawai Dawai is offline
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Location: North Georgia
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AND the form is removed out the lil bitty end holes. That gets complicated.

So.. bladder forming into a mold? with your experience in wrought iron you see how wire baskets are formed by end pressure? reckon the expanded metal (perforated metal) is done the same way? rolled ridges in the stock with three rollers, then pressed into a globe shape?

I tried rolling up some expanded metal in my ewheel once, it started marking up the rollers and I quit.

(time to make coffee.. gotta go)
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Old 02-17-2012, 11:01 AM
csedan csedan is offline
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Vermont
Posts: 38

Thanks for the ideas so far.... I see a design change in their future.
Anyone else care to take a stab at it?
Unfortunately, it looks like this is out of my scope and more importantly, out of their price range to produce 10-20 of these.
Maybe they'd settle for the cylindrical shade in image 3. That looks a little easier to accomplish, taper and all.
I would imagine that could be done in a 2 part style mold and put in a press to achieve all of the pleats, then bent around an armature and mechanically fastened?
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Old 02-17-2012, 11:57 AM
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ESjaavik ESjaavik is offline
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Location: Akershus(Follo),Norway
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First make the folds in the sheet.
Then wrap it around a tube and tie/weld the ends so it becomes a pleated tube.
Fix rings to both ends by sewing it through the perforations.
Mount the tube in a lathe and spin it up slowly until it attains the right shape. Probably quite fast, you have to experiment.
The rings will need to have enough friction on the tube to make them spin with it, but not too much to allow the rings to move closer to each other.
Einar Sjaavik.
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Old 02-17-2012, 12:01 PM
Overkill Overkill is offline
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Location: No. California
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Default Perforated material

We played around with some perforated aluminum, making domes for the tops of velocity stacks. The domes held foam air cleaners inside.

Using the english wheel, and making sure to wheel in all directions, I was able to stretch the center uniformly. As it was stretched, the holes in the top of the come where larger, and progressively got smaller towards the bottom of the dome.

Something I can't determine in your pictures, is if the holes are all the same size, or if they have deformed in the process of building the pieces. If everything is absolutely uniform (uniform hole size, placement vertically and horizontally) then I wonder if they can be made from flat sheet with holes in parallel lines.

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