rab3D - About the Hobbies, Projects and Work of Robert Burke

An old photograph of Robert Burke

As you have probably gathered from the Home page, I am Robert Burke and I live in Tamworth, Staffordshire England. I have created this site to log my hobbies and things I have done throughout my fairly varied career. I thought it would be good to share the experience's I have gained (and I am still learning) to help and encourage others who have similar interests and ideas.


I suppose the thing that has always interested me the most, is making things. The satisfaction gained from having a tangible object or drawing that you have created, that’s then appreciated by others is immense. The opportunities for anyone to be creative are boundless, whether it is simply whittling a simple wooden ornament, sketching something that interests you or designing and building a complex machine. The limitations are only down to how much effort you want to expend, learning how to do what's needed for you to achieve your goal. It’s having the belief that with time and persistence you will reach a satisfactory conclusion.

Making things has now spilled over into the virtual world of 3D design, with the creation of models and components without the grease, swarfe and sawdust. Making tangible solid components now only needs committing to after the model is proven on the computer. Though experienced in several drawing packages, AutoCAD, Solidworks, Paint Shop Pro and Gimp to name a few, my main interest is in Blender, which once you get to know its capabilities offers phenomenally more possibilities to be creative than any other program I have used.

Career In Brief

My working career started with an engineering apprenticeship with Cincinnati Milacron,learning a broad range of engineering disciplines and qualifying as a Machine Tool Fitter. Since completing the apprenticeship I have worked as a maintenance fitter for the local water authority, managed the maintenance team of a large aluminium foundry and had several production, engineering and design roles within a leading Building Products Manufacturer. I later moved on to support the UK's heating and combustion industries working at a number trade association and industry bodies.

I a Technical Managers role I developed my design skills and been responsible for the design and development of chimney and cladding systems. Learning AutoCAD and Solidworks has helped with design, but having a good engineering grounding with Cincinnati was invaluable. The development of my art and graphic skills became vital to the completion of Technical Manuals and literature. This area of work has snowballed as I have became more conversant with Blender, the Open Source creative suite. Technical writing and graphics is an area where I continued to further develop my skills graphics skills.

For the UK Chimney and appliance Industries I used to be President of the BFCMA and represent the UK on a number of European Standards "Chimney. gas, oil and solid fuel working groups". Other than my companies Technical Literature I have written various Industry Guides and numerous articles for the trade press.

If you are interested in anything I can do, or have done in the past, or have any comments or improvements you can suggest for this site, please contact me via the Contact link in the top menu.