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Friday
Oct192012

It's NOT PINK!... It's Light-ish Red ;)

This set of fabulous printed Rostock parts is going out our new friend Filipe in Brazil :)

If you would like a printed set of parts (any RepRap model) fill out the form on the bottom of the "Commision 3D Printed Parts" page for a quote!  :)

We will strike you a very good deal!

I will also thread the screw holes in the parts with the proper TAP, hopefully keeping your assembly job simple!

Friday
Oct122012

Order Printed Parts!  ;)

I have recently successfully started selling 3D printed parts!  In fact, I just sold two full sets of Rostock Printed parts for $49.99 each! :)

 

o you need 3D printed parts?  Maybe parts for your own 3D printer, or maybe a custom plastic object?  Commisison a set of printed parts today!  Chances are I can beat the prices you find on eBay!

Saturday
Oct062012

Casting Parts With 3D Printed Molds

I have seen a few magic instances online where folks have 3D printed molds to put Sugru (silicon rubber putty) into and then bolt together (allowing to cure overnight) in order to cast custom silicon rubber parts. 

Headphone Jack Example: [sugru.com

 
 

Custom Coupling Example: [www.thingiverse.com
(I like how this was bolted together) 

 
 
I was wondering if any of you super geniuses out in TV Land might be able to write a script that given the input of an .stl (or .scad) generates a two new .stl files which are two halves of a mold that you can bolt together with Sugru in the middle to make said rubber parts. 

This would be magic on Thingiverse smiling smiley A relatively simple script like this would open up all kind of casting opportunities; It would be helpful for materials other than Sugru as well. Sugru molds do not need a hole to pour in fluid; this makes them simpler. Just put Sugru in the middle and mash the halves together! 

I don't think this would be TOO CRAZY to pull off, but it is beyond my relatively amateur scad/cad skills right now... But I don't think this would be to difficult for the kinds of folks who browse the RepRap General forum winking smiley 

Considerations might include the ability to choose what axis to cut the "input STL" on; and ensuring that the end result pieces are laying smooth side down, so they can actually be printed on a reprap! 

I would love to use M3 nuts and bolts to hold the mold together; maybe this could be a variable for the user to change 

Also, be sure to check out this blog post where Z-Corp 3D printers are being used to make molds for a bench-top plastic injection molding machine!

Kepp in mind, that casting like this, will indeed require air-holes and a pouring channel:

Neat video by them too!

  

Sunday
Sep232012

MakerBot Industries' Questionable Ethics

MakerBot Industries Shocks Fanbase

Feelings of shock and betrayal rip through the 3D printing community this week as MakerBot Industries turns its back on its Fanbase on two fronts:

1.  MakerBot's new 3d printer the Replicator 2 will be "closed-source"

2.  Upon further inspection of changes to the Thingiverse.com Legal Terms of Service (which were made in February this year), MakerBot Industries claims ownership of the open-source designs posted on the site by it's users.

Read the sheepish re-buttal from the Dark Lord of the Thing, Bre Pettis.

These developments have brought MakerBot Industries condemnation from RepRap "All-Father" Adrian BowyerFormer MakerBot Founder Zach "Hoeken" Smith, Famous RepRap Developer Josef Prusa, and the RepRap 3D Printing Community At Large.

I think this cartoon by RepRap Blogger Nudel sets the scene nicely:

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Thingiverse As a Give and Take Service

Thingiverse.com does indeed provide a service; a service that I enjoy very much.
 
Whatever arrangement that MakerBot chooses to arrange with the users of the site is fairly irrelevant.
     
The trouble I see here is more about, trust, openness and the ethical fiber of MakerBot Industries.
     
If part of the deal of getting to use Thingiverse is that they get to co-own or use designs I post; that is fine, and not necessarily a good or evil action.
  
Some people might even think this is a good deal for the services they get from Thingiverse --> But such an arrangement must be very clear and understood by all parties
                
 The Ethical Dilemma here is that MakerBot Industries now has a website which collects open-source ideas, while running a business that sells closed-source products.

Questions You Must Ask Yourself:
  1. Does the closed-source MakerBot Replicator 2 contain open-source designs from users posted on Thingiverse?  Yes/No/Maybe So
  2. Has MakerBot positisoned themselves to sell closed source machines using open-source designs from users posted on Thingiverse? YES
  3. Does that pit MakerBot Industries in direct contention with the open-source values the company was founded on? Yes/No/Maybe So
The fact that the answer to the last question is a matter of opinion should horrify Thingiverse users. 

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Famous RepRap Dev Josef Prusa Jr. Chastises MakerBot and Rips Designs Off Thingiverse

Prusa Jr., the man behind the famous Prusa Mendel design, denounces the new Thingiverse Legal Terms of service, and the closed source nature of the MakerBot Replicator 2 

In a post on Thingiverse, Prusa initiated an "Occupy Thingiverse" movement and has called on RepRap Hobbyiests to spread his message. 



Prusa states he will be removing his designs from Thingiverse.com: 

"I'm leaving Thingiverse after seeing updated Terms of use thingiverse.com/legal , over next few days I will remove all my stuff. It will be downloadable on my website josefprusa.cz or reprap.org I prefer to by owner of my own designs :-) 

Also Replicator 2 is Closed Source, at least everything looks like it and guy on Makerbot support phone told me so. 
Check out my open letter to Bre Pettis here josefprusa.cz/open-hardware-meaning/ 

Link it, tweet it, comment it! Help the cause and show them we want it Open Source! 

Print the Test Cube as ugly as you can and post picture of it as "I made one" :-) 

Jo Prusa, RepRap"

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 Exiled MakerBot Founder Condems MakerBot Industries

MakerBot's founder, Zach "Hoeken" Smith, who was essentially exiled from his own company this April, broke his silence on the "load of corporate double-speak bullshit" that has come to characterize his interactions with MakerBot Industries.

Read Zach's Blog post here!

His blog post does not characterize MakerBot Industries well at all.

 

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RepRap "All-Father" Adrian Bowyer Shares His Perspective

Dr. Bowyer and the Gang @ RepRapPro.com

Dr. Adrian Bowyer, the inventor and creator of the RepRap Project, and source of much inspiration and admiration in the 3D printing community, made a few posts on the RepRap Community forum sheding some light on his thoughts of the situation.

Dr. Bowyer, as calm, cool, collected and gentlemanly as ever referenced a 2011 press release in which he discussed his reasoning behind making the RepRap project an open source endevour.

I make money out of Makerbot (a small amount) and I make money out of RepRap (a rather larger amount, via RepRapPro Ltd). The tiny percentage of Makerbot that I own means that I have no control over what they do. RepRapPro Ltd (which is run by me, my family, and friends) is completely open-source - that I do have significant control over. 

Anyone interested in my views on all this sort of thing may care to see here: http://lists.reprap.org/pipermail/reprap-dev-policy/2011-February/000001.html.

best wishes 

Adrian 

Dr. Bowyer's comments, while not as fevered as those frothing from the mouth of exiled MakerBot founders, and enraged RepRap Developers, clearly shows that MakerBot Industries has strayed from the values of the RepRap Project which spawned it.

Monday
Aug132012

Wire Management: It's a Snake!!!!

Note: This is my first post after a long hiatus.  We just successfully moved from Guam to CA.  It is great to be back, and look forward to making regular posts again :)

Wire managment on a homemade 3D printer can be a bear of a problem, especially if your projects don't regulary require in excess of 30 control wires ;)

Because I have many hobbies, and like to draw on alternate sources of inspiration, I took a look at how the arcade stick fanatics over at the Shoryuken Forums manage their wiring.

Arcade Ftight Stick Builders are infamous for their fetish with clean wiring solutions:

In particular I was interested in their use of TechFlex FlexoPet Sheathing.  

 

Bypassing most online stores, I was able to find much better deals on FlexoPet on eBay.

Working with flexible wire sheathing can be a whole hobby on it's own.  Some hobbyiests like to use nylon and PET sheathing to "pimp out" their PC towers.  The MILLION DOLLAR PC site is a prime example.

I am still learing the inns and outs of working with this style of shething but I am having fun with it all the same.

Here are some pics of my RepRapPro Huxley getting the FLEXOPET treatment :)

 

If you have some fun wire managment pictures or techniques, send me a message, and I will post them up here :)