Making of the AJ100 2019 Awards Trophies


When Fixie gets invited to dinner we like to leave a good impression. This doesn’t mean grabbing a £5 bottle of wine from our local Aldi... you know who you’re! With the AJ100 Annual Awards ceremony approaching, we thought it would be a fantastic opportunity to leave something with our fellow guests to remember us by.

Our starting point was the undeniably recognisable AJ100 logo and a simple premise: how can we generate a 3D version that would make the best use of 3D printing technologies. We have to admit, things got a bit out of control there for a time (respective exhibits below), but we reeled it in and got back to basics to come up with an elegant, yet unapologetically 3D, version of the logo.

Once the design had been settled we broke it down into separate parts. This is necessary to ensure that any uncured resin and support structures can be removed after the SLA printing process. This was also useful for our colleagues at Kandor Modelmakers to be able to spray finish the parts to match the distinctive colours of Architect’s Journal.

The SLA printing process can be a mesmerising thing. It’s somewhat like watching a fire in the depths of Winter; your mind seeks out patterns in the chaos. When you know what the design is, it can be even more tantalising as you spot flashes of what it could be...When the parts are finished, they ceremoniously rise from the depths of the resin to gracious applause from the onlooking crowd. At least this is how we like to honour the occasion.

AJ100 Awards SLA Resin 3D printed Trophies on Steriolithography Printer.

The parts are then cleaned up and bead blasted to give them a nice smooth surface. SLA resin printing does not produce colour parts, depending on the resin parts are either semi-transparent or monochrome. Therefore, we need to rely on trusted traditional finishing techniques to make details of models pop (although, not unsurprisingly, architects often prefer the clean minimalism of a single colour model).

White Spray finished SLA Resin 3D printed AJ 100 Awards Trophies

Of course, now would be the time to show you the final result; the fruits of our labour. But with the event not until next week, we wouldn’t want to disrupt the grand unveiling. We hope that all the worthy winners will appreciate the journey these trophies have taken. It would put a big smile on our faces to see them in pride of place the next time we visit your offices!