Create your own plastic forms. Custom ice cube trays, custom chocolate molds, regardless of intricacy, vacuum forming can do it.
Use this space to cheer the creator along, and talk to your fellow backers.
Have a question?
Can you describe the process and tool a little bit more? What is the maximum thickness of the resulting plastic... or maybe, how thick can it be? Special vacuum? How big (width and depth)? The shape around which you're forming... I think that I'm reading that is defined by Styrofoam?
The allowed height of deformation is dependent on a few variables. Unfortunately, a strict rule for this is difficult to develop as a result. Plastic thickness is important (0.030" was used in the video). Overall volume and draft angle (from top surface to bottom) are important as well.
I believe 0.030" polystyrene could handle a 2" tall deformation pretty easily so long as the volume of the shape relative to the sheet size isn't excessive.
I'd certainly consider instructions as a reward. I'll need to find some time to write it up properly though.
As far as sheets go, ABS and Polystyrene are common and good for beginners. Any thermoforming plastic should do well but they all have their own characteristics that require research. I can get 12x12 polystyrene sheets from ebay for ~2$ a sheet.
I think the beauty of this is that the sheets are relatively cheap, and if you don't tear them, you can usually "reset" them in the oven and try again. Trial and error has been a pretty effective way to help me learn more about the forming, but like I said in the video, it's a bit of an art, and I'm not an artist. :)
What is the height deformation possible using the plastic sheets? (eg. I think the video examples were about 1cm / half inch? Can they be higher?)
Also, perhaps you could add a pledge level that is - instructions on how to make the DIY VF unit for international backers? I would go for that. Then just tips on how to get the plastic sheets?
Looking forward to seeing that chocolate Spongebob