In the "Manipulate and Form Aluminum Sheet Class"... Alfredo Alamo, a sculptor who works primarily in steel, wanted to learn to manipulate and form aluminum sheet. And to learn any process, a project is needed to experience the steps of the process. This was a one day class so I suggested a relatively small or less complex form. Alfredo designed the project himself, he decided he'd like to make a bota (see photos). So I first asked him to draw the outline on a piece of cardboard, as he saw it. And then a "cross cut" view, which looked like a few "D"'s on that same pattern (see photo A). This gave me an idea of how much larger the pattern needed to be to have enough material to get the depth desired. It ended up being about 1/2", and Alfredo then added 1/2" all the way around his pattern so that there would be enough material when he transfered it to the aluminum sheet. After cutting out the "enlarged" cardboard pattern. It was then transfered to the aluminum sheet, and two identical pieces were cut out using a plasma cutter. Once the edges were cleaned up.....the dishing began.

The first side was done by hand and hammer on wood. The second was done using a treadle hammer with a lead bottom resistance. Once both sides were dished out they were welded together with a spool gun on the mig welder. Welds were cleaned up, and the only thing left to do was make a "mouth piece". Alfredo "fullered" or necked down some copper tubing and forged it to fit on the open end. VIOLA............ one fine looking BOTA.

bota2 bota1