Mike Roig, Sculpture
On the Wing
A commissioned sculpture for Automation Direct
in Cumming, Ga.
Late January 2018
The last few weeks have been all about that base.
There are a lot of steps to making that deceptively simple looking form that will
attach securely to the pedestal and support the rotating shape above. Since it will be sitting on
that elegant pedestal, it was decided to go with an all stainless steel base to eliminate any rust bleeding
down its facade.
The hub that supports the axle and bearings has eight lug bolts which required
drilling in the plate that would form the top of the base. You can see the plate and hub sitting on the yellow work
table. In the foreground is the first plate with the eight anchor bolt holes that will eventually
secure the sculpture to the pedestal.
I like the proportions Jim drew in his rendering of the pedestal, and so the height of the sides
was determined so as to maintain that ratio.
As you can see from the photo below of the underbelly of the maquette's kinetic element,
it is hexagonal at its lowest point, and this is what led to the base column adopting the hexagonal form.
After an initial sanding of the welded seams, the next step was creating an access door
into the base to be able to install the lower bearing and retaining nut on the three-inch axle.
The concrete core of the pedestal is slightly over 2' x 2', and that first plate conforms to that dimension.
The second, larger plate is 37.5 inches square, the dimension of the cast stone cap of the
pedestal. Together they make for a half-inch of steel through which the anchor bolts will pass to lock
down the sculpture.
In the picture above several steps have been accomplished. The hexagon has been welded to the
base plates and the first part of the skirting has been tacked to the larger base plate. Unseen from the outside,
triangular buttressing has been added inside the hexagonal column, further locking the plate supporting
the axle assembly to the sides.
Similar buttresses will be added at the hexagon's base adding addition rigidity
to it's attachment to the base plates. Another hexagonal box has been fabricated and welded to the axle allowing it to spin
with just the right clearance above its support. It is from this that the winged form will grow in the later
phases of the fabrication.
Next step, carefully create cardboard patterns for the precise fit of each of the four sides of the
shallow pyramid of the base, and then cut them out of 10 gauge steel.
Of course that's a little more complex, further complicated by the fact that there will need to be a way
into this part of the base in order to get the nuts onto those anchor bolts.
Welded, then edges sanded, and finally surface sanded below. There are two doors on opposite sides of the skirting
which allow ready access to all the anchor bolts.
I've created a pattern in luan paneling which will allow for precise placement of the anchors in the
pedestal concrete core.
I believe that makes a base, and a good place for a pause. I'll be working on a couple of other projects for a bit.
There will be a longer gap between this and the next update than there was in these first two.
But it's nice to have this much in non-virtual form.
©2018 Mike Roig, All Rights Reserved