A 3D Method for Measuring Platform Angles on Lithic Flakes

Author(s): Samuel Burns; Beau Kromberg

Year: 2017


The measurement of platform angles on lithic flakes by hand is notoriously difficult, and is plagued by intra- and inter-observer variability. The measurement method proposed in this poster uses 3D models of flakes loaded into Blender, a free open-source 3D design program. After identifying the platform, two points (a) and (b) are defined at the intersections of the left and right lateral margins and the platform. A line (a-b) is drawn between these two points, ignoring any platform roundedness or complex faceting. A line (d-e) is drawn that intersects the midpoint of line (a-b) at a 90 degree angle and that terminates in points (d) and (e) on the intersections of the ventral and dorsal faces with the platform. Next, a flat plane that bisects line (a-b) at a 90 degree angle is drawn through the flake. A point (f) can be chosen at any point where this plane intersects with the ventral and dorsal side of the flake, and the angle between line (d-e) and lines (d-f) and (e-f) can be accurately measured using built-in tools, giving a well-defined, replicable measurement of interior and exterior platform angles.

Cite this Record

A 3D Method for Measuring Platform Angles on Lithic Flakes. Samuel Burns, Beau Kromberg. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 429000)

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Spatial Coverage

min long: -104.634; min lat: 36.739 ; max long: -80.64; max lat: 49.153 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 16911