The Pritt River Museum at the University of Oxford accommodates a beautiful set of ancient musical devices from across the world. The museum is not like other kinds of artifacts that can just be looked at and understood. Having the set of instruments presents an exceptional challenge because hearing them is a portion of the encounter.
The museum receives several requests from members and researchers of founding areas to take the devices it houses. However, due to the state of many ancient instruments, the earliest may not be reliably played. It could be due to pesticide contamination or fragility.
Lately, the Museum lately partnered with the Department of Engineering and Science and the Department of Conversation at Oxford. This is in a move to recreate and provide playable historical instruments. The partnership is to also unveil the Plastic Fantastic plan. The project is backed by funding from Oxford University IT Innovation Challenge.
Among the devices recreated during the Plastic Fantastic project was a 17th-century ivory recorder. The recorder was invented by John Goddard of London. A CT scan was done on this device at the Cranfield University allowing it to be changed into a 3D print by researchers at Oxford. Importantly, the full scan incorporated details about the flute’s inside that would be important to weigh to balance its sound.
But the team faced difficulty when it came to examining the wooden parts of the flute, a wooden slab in the mouthpiece. This is because the initial part had been destroyed by woodworm and the porous, dry quality of wood. As a way to overcome the challenge, researchers, asked Polygonica, to invert engineer piece. Polygonica is a net processing software provider.
“We used Polygonica’s shrink-wrapping algorithms to create a faithful representation of the outer surface of the original model, whilst removing errors and unwanted internal structure,” says the Senior Developer at MachineWorks Limited, Dr. Simon Vickers. This is the firm behind Polygonica.
“This resulted in an accurate and printable STL file.” He added.
With the 3D print of the mouthpiece and recorder, the Oxford crew 3D printed a sequence of five flute duplicates. Each of them was created from a separate material or by use of a separate 3D printing procedure. This past September, the 3D printed recorders were introduced to the public via an unrehearsed show.
It compared the original device to every one of the duplicates. The audience was after that requested to vote for the woodwind device. The condition was that the one they voted had to have a sound similar to the initial one.
However, the ultimate outcomes of the comparison are yet to be released. More testing and research need to be done. But the research crew exposed that one specialist said a printed recorder really sounded good than the initial.