All of us are recovering from what was a whole lot of fun in the Big Apple at World Maker Faire. More detailed posts will be forthcoming as we digest (AKA sleep/render video) on what occured. Suffice to say, success! In the meanwhile, I thought I’d post some pictures and quotes from a gem blogpost by one of my favourite RepRap members, RichRap (AKA Rhys Jones). Last week, he attended TCT2012 in Birmingham, UK. Whilst perusing tables of Makerbot and 3D Systems, among many others, he tested their ‘makerness’ …. a combination of attentiveness, niceness, low-BS-ness and Open-sourceness. By no means a scientific test, but something I wish I thought of. Results? Read on, compadre.

RichRap’s Patented Low-Fat Gourmet Maker Test

Here’s a few of the juicy moments – full post here.

So last year I visited TCT in a professional capacity with suit, shirt and tie, this year I decided to go along as a Maker – Jeans and a Woolly Jumper – general enthusiast to see what reception I would get from all these many (different sized) companies looking to sell machines for the next desktop industrial revolution to the ‘general public’ I’m calling my dress code the ‘maker test’ would I get any attention at all from these companies?, I’m sad to say generally most of the companies failed, ignoring me for people in suits that actually had very little interest in their product offerings.
Like 3D System …. Trying to fool people by convincing them that the Cube had printed objects made on a BFB, objects that were taken from Thingiverse….
The Cube was trying to print, but unfortunately very badly, the drive mechanism looked like it was partially blocked resulting in terrible surface quality with lots of little holes and pips where variable extrusion was occurring. It was also printing very slowly and at one set speed (I estimate about 20mm/Sec), with only slightly faster travel speeds.
One of many Maker Test fails…but wins? Take a look at the Fabbster. Love that stick filament printing (read our post on that)
They have a patented stick deposit system, this is basically Injection moulded plastic sticks of material that are loaded into a magazine and snap together as they exit into a PTFE tube onto it’s way to the extruder. They have many materials including a flexible (soft PLA style) that was very nice to handle. The machine is big and well built. They were very nice at the show and passionate about people using their printers and materials. They passed the Maker test and we chatted for some time about the machine.
Read the rest, and pay special attention to the final comments. Apparently RichRap completely misquoted Makerbot, which Bre personally took offence to. Apparently a Makerbot rep said “Some people will not like that we have gone closed source, but they all use Thingiverse whether they like it or not, we have the biggest community.”. No one but the Rep and RichRap was there …. so it’s impossible to know what’s true, however delicious the controversy is.