The last year of my 3D printing journey has now arrived at a point where the 3D print and innovation shop in Gravesend is now open for business. The journey started, like most do, with an itch that needed to be scratched. This particular itch was, at the time, a desire to fabricate my own cases for various raspberry pi projects I was tinkering with.
Since I was already tinkering, I thought the best idea was to get a 3D printer in kit form and build it. A bit of research brought me to Joseph Prusa's I3 MK2 printer which was reasonably priced and seemed to offer outstanding quality capability.
The first kit arrived in December and after a week of spending any spare hours I could find building and rebuilding and printing and adjusting, I was able to produce very good quality prints of some of the standard Prusa objects with the supplied g-codes. So what now?
Now I could model and print the raspberry pi cases that started the journey. Since I had already been working with the raspberry pi's for a while, I decided to use octoprint for my printer and began printing the case parts. Around this time, my printer suffered it's first part failure, mostly due to my involvement. I needed to print a new part, and quickly realised that what I really needed was a second printer. By this time, the rest of the world now wanted a Prusa I3 too, so a new printer was going to take a while to arrive, which meant I would need to build a new printer based on the Prusa I already had.
Now it is November and there are 3 printers, one with the 4 colour multi-material upgrade, all running smoothly; the shop is open and Louis has joined me to carry the 3D printing workload while I continue with my contracting work.
It also means 3D printing is no longer enough, so we are building a CNC machine, printing the parts with our 3D printers of course, and continuing the journey.