Building a Wikihouse…

…Or at least a scale model of one

For our Open Source Village project I’m looking into all kinds of open source architecture, and Wikihouse has jumped out at me as having a vibrant community and actually being used in the real world.

A few months ago I was in Edinburgh, randomly googled Wikihouse Edinburgh and saw there was one around Fountainbridge. So I got in touch with the architect, learnt more about the project, fiddled around with her scale model, and recently cut and assembled the first frame of my own 1:10 scale model.

Messing Up

A project wouldn’t be a project without messing up along the way:

Let’s do the ply warp again

The first batch of wood I used was slightly bowed, so the laser cutter didn’t properly focus. Result: Some bits wouldn’t break free, and there was no way I was going to go in there with a pen knife to cut them all out.


Both the wood and myself were a bit too thick

The plywood I used was 3mm. The notches for the holes were 2mm. After swearing, sanding, swearing, localized warping of space-time, more swearing, and using my trusty mallet, I managed to just about get the model together. Some of the details are a bit iffy though.



Bye bye fingerprints

I may have trouble with biometric security now since I might have sanded off a few fingerprints. They grow back, right?

Lessons Learnt

  • Measure stuff before cutting. Would’ve saved a lot of headaches
  • Ensure materials are totally flat on the laser cutter before cutting
  • Next time I’m going on Taobao and buying some 2mm plyboard