In 2021, the UAE's Golden Jubilee Celebrations Committee announced that the official ceremony celebrating the 50th UAE National Day was due to take place in Hatta, Dubai. Hatta is well-known for its natural beauty, as it is surrounded by mountains and sources of water. When we were presented with the opportunity, we at Evolution were ecstatic since we understood that it would be a massive challenge.
The Scenic Department collaborated closely with LARMAC to ensure that we did our utmost to make the performance spectacular and captivating. The 3D Printed Tonfa sticks were one of numerous various aspects on which we developed and had constructed from the ground up.
The Tonfa was designed to be operated with a single latch push button right near the handle, which allowed the performer to operate it by using their thumb with a run time of approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes. They could be easily recharged using a USB Cable, with a charging time of 3-5 hours.
To manage the large quantity stated in the order, we enlisted the support of Proto21, a 3D printing farm in Jabal Ali to create 300 cases of Tonfas, also known as a T-Baton, using an approved design and prototype, which was created in-house. In the prototyping phase, various challenges emerged, including a redesign on the client’s end to accommodate the latch push button in a different position, which we successfully were able to accommodate within the project’s set timeline.
Once the Tonfas arrived, we had to install the LED Strip, as well as the battery and the boost converters, which convert the standard 3.6V of Li-Po batteries to 12V for operating the LED Strip. We utilized rechargeable batteries for these Tonfas since we wanted to eliminate as much e-waste as possible throughout the performances while keeping it simple to use and manage. Each electric component was put by hand, and each step was checked to minimize mistakes.
As soon as the electronics had been installed, we sanded and painted all the Tonfas in our painting workshop to give them the right finish and texture. For an attractive smooth finish, the filament linings were painted in two steps, so they were even and invisible to the naked eye.
3D printing is still an emerging market where Evolution is learning and adapting to meet the market's needs. We were proud to have delivered our first large scale in-house 3D printed project on time along with great results!