Ami Drach and Dov Ganchrow recreate
Stone Age tools with 3D-printed handles

| 10 comments
 

Designers Ami Drach and Dov Ganchrow have created a range of 3D-printed handles to give the ancient multipurpose hand-axe a series of specific functions (+ slideshow).

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 9

The hand-axe is a prehistoric teardrop-shaped stone tool that was intentionally chipped from both sides into a symmetrical form. It is likely to have been used as a "one size fits all" tool for a variety of purposes including skinning animals, preparing food and as a dagger for over 1.4 million years across Europe, Asia, Africa and North America.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 9

For their Man Made series, Dov Ganchrow and the late Ami Drach sourced flints from an Israeli desert to recreate the early implement.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 5

"The first stage of the project was one of hastened evolution and bleeding," said Ganchrow. "Flint rocks of desirable size, shape and material quality were sourced from the Negev desert in southern Israel, while time was spent improving and understanding the skill of knapping - striking the flint with a softer stone to create controlled breakages, and chipping away flint flakes as the impact's shock wave runs through the stone. Needless to say this is where the bleeding came in..."

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 8

Once shaped, the flint pieces were 3D-scanned so the handles could be designed to fit perfectly.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 4

"The flint hand-axes were three-dimensionally scanned with the gracious help of Dr Leore Grosman's digital lab at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem's institute of Archaeology," Ganchrow continued. "The digital hand-axe files then had handles custom-designed exemplifying various tool uses."

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 10

By adding 3D-printed handles each designed only for a specific task, all other options for use were removed – transforming a general tool into very specialised one.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 10

The team created nine handles, named from two to ten due to the numbering system used for archaeology lab's original scans.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 10

Number 2 uses cord to attach the stone into split piece of wood like a wedge, forming a spear. Number 3 is a clip-on holster for carrying the stone so it can be thrown in defence.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 2

Number 4 has interchangeable heads, while Number 5 allows the stone to be used for cutting and slicing. Number 6 is a tripod display case that presents the stone-axe as a courtship object.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 3

A platform above the handgrip in Number 7 enables the stone-axe to be used for indirect percussion, an action similar to hitting a chisel with a hammer and transferring the force to a stone.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 7

Number 8 has a two-handed grasp for digging or pounding and Number 9 is designed for left-handed use.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 9

Finally, stone hand-axe handle Number 10 resembles a tool probably used for woodworking in a chopping-pulling motion.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 6

"The handles were printed in Verogray – a performance polymer with support from Stratasys," Ganchrow said. "The parts were prepared and assembled on the original flint hand-axes, effectively joining the two most temporally distant Making technologies: flint knapping and 3D printing."

Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design graduates Ami Drach and Dov Ganchrow established their design studio in 1996.

Man-made collection by Dov Ganchrow and Ami Drach
Number 6

Photography is by Moti Fishbain.

Design: Ami Drach and Dov Ganchrow
3D-scanning: Dr Leore Grosman and the Institute of Archaeology at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem.
3D-printing: Stratasys/Objet

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| 10 comments

Posted on Sunday, June 8th, 2014 at 12:00 pm by Katie Treggiden. See our copyright policy. Before commenting, please read our comments policy.

  • ScuffedShoes

    No. 10 is an adze. Because, you know, why would a design magazine need to know the names of tools, or assume its readers did?

  • Iryna

    Virtues of modesty and moderateness are yet to be discovered by 3D-print proponents.

  • Saywhat

    So, they 3D-printed a part that holds the stone? But still made a spear using rope to hold the 3D-printed part in place, what?

    If you do something like this, be consequential!

  • seb

    The concept is brilliant, bringing low and high technologies to form an object. We used axes and knifes in the stone age as much as today, so we can understand the meaning of such hybrid.

    It is true the 3D-printer design can be more minimal, yet in comparison to the dead simplicity of the stone tools it is less important.

    I’d ask what is the relation between the manufacturing abilities then and today. Did the technique involved in producing the stone tools require specialist carvers then? Do we need designers to 3D print today?

  • GUS

    Reckon these will go down a treat in Shoreditch. All these bearded fellas whacking open their stoneground wheatgerm rye loaf with a prehistoric adze. On the money this one chaps.

  • mb4design

    And here I was thinking this 3D printing trend was just a bunch of crap. Finally a real-world application.

  • troglodyte

    O nooooo, they designed and printed a weapon! and dezeen publishes it. The horror!

    Apart from that, a design experiment wit a sense of humour. Good to see it here between to much people that take themselves way too seriously.

    The caveman inside me likes the thumb dent on number 5.

  • Concerned Citizen

    A handle for a tool that no one will ever use.

  • Alan

    Best project I’ve ever seen in a long time.

  • http://www.3dprintingpartner.com/ Printing Partner

    I love it.