I changed the name of the group from 3D Printing to Additive Fabrication (AF)
since I think the term 3D Printing is a misnomer.
The group will consist of two types of membership. The first will be by
invitation only and the second will be general membership.
To be in the invitation only group you will have to have some experience, equipment or direct need for AF. This can include design skills as an artist,
designer or engineer. Or maybe you have experience or interest in building AF
machines or related hardware or actually own related equipment?
The idea will be to further the ideas presented by Hod Lipson in his book Fabricated. If you haven’t read it, you should.
Whether you want to create art, replace broken things, design new products, the idea will be to design and build things without limiting yourself to what conventional design tools and manufacturing methods would suggest.
For example, it might be artwork that can only be made with AF. One of our members, Phil Webster, showed me a bunch of his work over the summer and it is truly amazing. He has done lots of work using Z-Corp machines. He also really knows SketchUp.
Mary Robson is interested in building RepRap machines and already has. She is also interested in fabricating with chocolate.
I have a MakerGear M2 and can print in PLA and ABS. A MakerBot laser scanner should be arriving any day. I have done quite a bit with the M2 in the last few months and am pretty good with Solidworks.
I know there are plenty more of you that have experience or equipment to offer or your own visions on what you would like to do with it.
For the rest of you, we will have open meetings every couple of months to show you what we’re up to and so you can learn what it’s all about. If you take the time to learn a design tool (many of them are free) or have something else to contribute or an actual need to build something, you will be welcome to join the core group.
The reason I am doing this is that our first meetings tended to be repeated introductions to basic concepts and we were getting nowhere.
Even if you don’t live near Amherst, you can participate in our meetings via FaceTime, Skype or Google.
I am not opposed to working with Makergroups but that is really not what this group is about. If, over time, there is some synergy to doing that then we certainly can.
We will also make some effort to explore Ponoko, Shapeways and similar services.