Let's Make Robots!

Got $1299,- to spare?

Then I would recomend that you have a look at the MakerBot Thing-O-Matic 3D printer http://www.makerbot.com/

With my 50 birthday coming up, my family chipped in and got me one of those fabulous machines. And I must admit that I’m totally blown away by the quality of the print and the robustness of the ABS plastic parts that is printed.

It comes as a kit, but the joy of building it is almost worth the 1300 by itself. If you can remember the joy of your first LED blinker then the feeling of your Sketchup model coming to life in front of you is far beyond that feeling.

Until now I have drilled, cut and bent pieces of aluminum plate to make stuff, or made a blob of polymorph for those odd shaped brackets I need. No more! Now I can make almost anything with a high precision that I had no way of building before.

And there is a whole community of people uploading part for anyone to print over at http://www.thingiverse.com/
Some of you might recall that I had some problems with a bead sorter http://letsmakerobots.com/node/18124 now it turns out that there is a person that has made a part just for that  http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:7332

I’m only in the beginning of this adventure, but the other day I needed a holder for a mag wire spool and a bracket for a 40 RPM motor to wind some electro magnets.  A quick Google Sketchup and an hour (or two) later I had all my parts.

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ied never use it enough to justify having it ,but if i could make and sell parts that might be a different story . love to have 1  .cool link Geir 

This one looks interesting http://3dprinting.co.nz/3d-printer/

It looks very nice, but a bit more expensive ($ 3800,-). But then you get a printer that’s up and running straight away. In my book, that’s a minus as it was great fun building the Thing-O-matic :-)

Wow, I always want to try it. Do you need a lot of work to reshape it after?

This fare I haven’t done any reshaping. The only thing I might do is to drill small holes to correct size.
The ABS plastic is very easy to work with and cuts easily. You might get a shiny finish by using Acetone (even waterproof).
From my point of view the quality is great straight out of the printer.

The yellow brackets and the spools (in the back of the picture) is straight out of the printer

Thanks for the info. Wow, nice quality~ I must get one soon or later.

I’m very pleased with my printer and would recommend it to everyone.
I just made a bracket to hold a video camera on my boat and it turned out very nice.
http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:7973

Hi Mr.Andersen,

I bought a 3D printer from makerbot too. Which program you use? SketchUp or autocad etc? Since I don't really know anyone who use it do you mind me to write you Email to ask questions?

Congratulations Hardmouse on you 3D printer. It might seem a bit daunting at first, but when you get the hang of it, it becomes second nature.
I use Sketchup as it’s easy and free. The free version has its limitations when it comes to more complex surfaces, but for my work it’s more than adequate.
I see lot of people over at http://www.thingiverse.com/ uses OpenSCAD http://www.openscad.org/ , but that seems way too complicated for me.

But if I can help in any way, feel free to contact me via my profile.

How big of stuff can you make with that?