One of the things that makers (and good entrepreneurs) have is persistence. It’s a basic part of the DIY (Do It Yourself) culture, you don’t give up even if you don’t know exactly how to do it. A fair amount of uncertainty and vagueness are expected, you simply believe it will work out in the end. Even if it doesn’t work the first time. Or the second.
I’ve been going through a lot of that in building a 3D printer the last few months. Picked a kit versus a fully assembled so I’d learn more about how they work. But have to admit, there has been several times that I’ve felt like throwing in the towel. Even with good documentation it’s hard to cover every possible wrong step. And the technology is still… ‘developing’…
What has been a key has the online 3D printer community. When I had a problem with a z-axis nut that wouldn’t fit, others with the problem confirmed that grinding off some metal would fix it. When my first prints had problems and I posted a picture of the problem, I had detailed suggestions on what to change in the software parameters within 30 minutes of my post!
But writing out detailed questions and getting answers still takes more time than talking in person. While I love the sheer number of people you can reach with an online post, it still has some disadvantages versus talking to an expert in person or sharing what you’ve learned with others directly.
A local community of makers could help that. There are at least 3 other groups of people here in Greencastle using 3D printers that I know of and I believe there are more. We need to create opportunities for people to share their experiences and help the knowledgebase to grow.
Castlemakers as a group is exploring some events to do exactly that, including a local competition for 3D printers and designers. If you have an interesting in helping, please contact Chris directly or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org .