After a year’s work designing, building, scrapping, redesigning, building, and working through software and firmware issues, the MegaMax 3D printer is now functional. It has some common 3D printing issues like printed objects peeling up off the glass printbed. Tweaked settings in Slic3r, ABS “juice”, and Aquanet hairspray have all been tested with moderate success in attempts to improve adhesion to the printbed. Finally, have_blue gave me a block of foam out of the Stratasys printer to try out and it seems to work better than the other methods and doesn’t require heating the bed! Further experiments to be conducted post-haste.
Hopefully, we can use this as a backdrop for events like the Art Jamboree.
I’ve been toying with the idea of room dividers for a while now. I don’t exactly have use for one, but I think they look neat and it’s basically a blank canvas. Drawing inspiration from my Clockwork Boxes, I decided that a gear motif would best suit the makerspace, thus giving me a new use for the piece: as a backdrop at events we participate in such as Art Jamboree and the various Maker Faires.
There are 3 of us in this photo. Really.
The actual screens were cut out with a large-scale CNC router, while the frame was ripped from 2×4′s, with a dado groove down the center for the screen to slip into. Thanks, Jason H.!!
Assembly went well, although there were a few hiccups. The drill bit wasn’t long enough, so some minor splitting occurred at a couple of spots. The frame was slightly warped and so needed to be clamped and glued before being screwed together.
After allowing the paint to dry overnight, myself, Matt W., and Jason H. assembled this thing just prior to heading to the Art Jamboree at the Hilton in Milwaukee.
I love a good blog post! And I really love a good blog post about the process of making things! From selecting the proper wood, to cutting, laser-etching, assembling, and packaging, this blog post has it all. I’m taking about The Making of the Digi-Comp II, First Edition from our friends at Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories.
There’s a great/amusing comment on the post:
When’s the official air date on “How It’s Made”? :D
It’s funny because it is a long and detailed post about the process of making something (disclaimer: I’m a fan of shows like How It’s Made) but I don’t think a maker version of How It’s Made is a bad idea! Hmmm, maybe that’s what the MAKE TV show is going to be.
I made two VIDEOS about the snow-globe. The first is just a brief video showing the finished project. The second video is a longer “How-To” which includes some video, but is mostly a photo slide-show of all the steps I took to create the project.
I want to open my first blog post with a statement that continues to impress me: Milwaukee Makerspace is a wonderful place! I mostly show up for the free meetings. MMS provides an excellent environment to be social, to learn (happens every time I go!), to teach (when I can!), and to get the creative juices flowing.
I had recently started working with Arduino (after a failed run at Microchip’s PIC series of microcontrollers), and was making progress quickly. I learned how to read infrared remote control codes, how to use an infrared motion sensor, and how to control servos. What I did not have, was a sense of direction as to where to go with all of this!
After listening to the Bay View Neighborhood Associate pitch their idea of MMS helping with the Pumpkin Pavilion, and listening to Royce Pipkins describe his idea of animatronic pumpkins singing along to a song, I was struck with my own idea: an animatronic skull.
My Husband and I wanted to put up some kind of Christmas decorations in our apartment windows over looking the city. After talking about it for a while, I decided to make lighted letters saying, “HO HO HO” …but since we only have two pairs of windows, it would have to just be, “HO HO”.
In the wee hours on Black Friday, we got the materials: 4 sheets of wood, 4 boxes of 100 count LED lights, and extension cords. After sketching out the design…
…and cutting out the letters…
…it was time to drill the 400 holes and hot glue all the lights in place.
It only took a weekend to make and hang these and I think the end result is well worth it.
The video shows the last few layers of the calibration cube “printing” at 414% speed (according to my LCD display).
The Bucketworks 3D printing meet-up on 8/12 paid off big-time! Gary Kramlich helped me debug a problem that was preventing me from flashing the firmware on the controller board for the MegaMax 3D printer. After a few tweaks I was able to get it moving.
This is a time lapse video of “Red Lotus” the Power Wheels race car that Milwaukee Makerspace built for the 2012 Power Racing Series. Tom Gr. did almost all the work (with some help!) His original plan was to do the whole build in one weekend… It took a little longer, but not much.
We’re looking forward to the 2013 season and have already started planning. I’m going to say this right now: Sector67 and i3Detroit, we’re coming for you!
I thought I would jump in and blog on my current progress at the Makerspace with a lamp called OOMA, or The Object Of My Affection. It’s a lamp that is shaped like a GPS Navigation pin that rotates to always points toward the one you love… as long as they allow you access to their Google Latitude account :). I am finalizing hardware designs and now moving into writing the software and how it talks to the Internet.
Initially I would have waived it off as using WiFi, or Ethernet, but work on another project (Marco) has illuminated several obstacles over multiple use cases (configuring Wi-Fi, closed networks, IP addresses); instead I think the approach will be to opt over USB (via Arduino Leonardo). I figure, if people will load up a coffee cup heater or foam missile launcher to USB, than there is no issue with port scarcity.
It’s not a lamp without light, and at some point OOMA will light up in either Android Blue, or iPhone Purple. Lighting the lamp will, however, have to relegated to a v.2 build, due to some complexity in the diffusion of light in such a cramped space. Additionally, I’d like to investigate EL panels to light it up.
Finally, I am coming up on the decision to be a DIY offering, or to design it to be marketable - do I build as a one off and just offer the blueprints to others or build an end-to-end consumer solution complete with potentially an NFC tag to tap and pair a user and their lamp.
MegaMax 3D printer based on MendelMax but bigger and minus plastic parts.
This is my on-going project at the Milwaukee Makerspace. It is a 3D extruded plastic printer with about 1 cuft build envelope. I want to print life-size human skulls (among other things) from CT scan data. The printer is made mostly from salvaged parts and materials so the cost has been very low. When it’s finished it will have a heated 12″x12″ bed (13″x13″ if I can find an aluminum plate that big) and dual extruder so it can print in two colors.
I have learned a lot on this project- some things that work and others that don’t work so well, and how to use a milling machine to drill holes precisely and square the ends of the 8020 extrusion pieces used to build up the frame of the machine.
I could not have done any of this without access to the people, materials, and tools at Milwaukee Makerspace. Every time I go there to do some work on this project someone says something that gives me new ideas for improvements to the design. I frequently find materials and parts left for me on the machine’s cart by other members who know what I’m trying to do. If you have a project idea find your local Makerspace and get busy- there is nothing that will get your creative juices flowing like being around a bunch of people with similar interests and different skills and experience!
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