Introducing AAICA LLC

To all silversmiths and whitesmiths:
I am proudly announcing the debut of my company, AAICA LLC!
At the present time, AAICA's main product involves working with TUFA
as casting aid for casting silver, pewter, and low temperature alloys.
What is TUFA?
TUFA is a naturally occuring rock that forms in bodies of fresh water over millions of years. It is created by the slow precipitation of calcium carbonate.
This is the historic method for silver casting used by the Navajo (Dine') people residing in portions of the Southwestern United States.
AAICA LLC resides in Apache County, Arizona, very close to the eastern border of Arizona, where a lot of the Navajo jewelery activity takes place.
AAICA hopes to relieve some of the thankless drudgery involved on the part of those Navajo silversmiths who would rather design and use molds than cut them. AAICA would also welcome anyone else interested in supplementing thier cuttlebone or investment casting with Dine' methods.
Anyone familiar with cuttlebone casting can easily make the transition to casting with TUFA. Cuttlebone is also calcium carbonate, but produced within the bodies of squids. TUFA therefore presents advantages over using cuttlebone:
1) Larger molds can be created out of TUFA blocks than cuttlebones. 2) Using TUFA instead of cuttlebone can help conserve oceanic ecosystems. 3) TUFA presents an alternative for people who have religious or philisophical objections to using animal products as a part of crafting.
TUFA also presents advantages over the lost wax casting method: 1) Like cuttlebone casting, TUFA is a far "lower-tech" method, requiring less expertise and less money for the beginner or small crafter to begin using. 2) The particles of calcium carbonate that composes TUFA are on average less hazardous to accidently inhale or ingest than the silica that is part of some investment powders.
AAICA's business plan is to: 1) cut and square TUFA blocks to order for freehand artists 2) produce a catalog of off-the-shelf shapes 3) creating molds to 0.01 inch accuracy using a 3 and 4 axis CNC milling
0.01 inch accuracy is all that is typically needed by the vast majority of cuttlebone and TUFA users who presently work by hand.
BobCAD, BobArt, and Python are used for generating the necessary Gcode. The Gcode is executed on AXIS running under Ubuntu Linux with the Magma real-time kernel modification.
I will be on summer vacation between 10 June and 25 July, but I will be happy to take bids for later jobs over this period. I will also be very happy to entertain any or all suggestions or requests by potential customers.
Thank you all for your time, kind consideration, and past encouragement of me as The Eternal Squire.
Andrew Jonathan Fine Owner AAICA LLC (928)-587-1312
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