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Has REPRAP come to a standstill?

Posted by maboo 
Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 05:24AM
In the past 12 months there has not been any major leap in the evolution of the REPRAP project.
Also a lot of the 3D printing hype has cooled down in the media after printed weapons gave 3D printing a big focus.
To me the deltas and similiar forks are the last major evolutions, that have been followed by a larger part of the community.
What do you say:
Are we to expect only minor new improvements in the foreseeable future or is there a REPRAP project, in sight that promisises a breakthrough ?


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Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 07:41AM
This one: [reprap.org] ?

That said, it looks like development is pretty much in commercial hands now. Wether RepRap has come to a standstill depends on what you consider to be RepRap.


Generation 7 Electronics Teacup Firmware RepRap DIY
     
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 07:47AM
That is something i have observed as well and i currently try to do something about it.
Imo the focus of many posts on this forum indicate as to what happens. More and more projects and systems that don't have anything to do with the original idea of a self replicating printer have come into the center of interest. While i can understand that, it surely takes the eyes of the originial idea, which i still think is something worth pursuing.
Things have changed a bit since the times of the original Mendel and i think it is ok to make use of stuff like aluminium extrusions and similar, as long as they are easy to source and not to expensive. After all the printer should not only be possible to be build by most, but also affordable.

With all metal hotends that can only be made using at least lathes or even CNC equipment being al lthe rage i invested some time in devleoping a hotend for high quality output that can be manufactured by most handy people and without special equipment. Also i am currently developing an extruder that can handle very flxible materials, most with a Bowden. Of course it will be open source and can be build by anyone with a printer and a few basic hand tools.

At this time me and a couple of guys from Hackerspace Frankfurt are working on a "new" printer that again has the focus on being a true RepRap, while offering higher print quality at faster speed than most current reprap designs. No idea if we will succeed, but it is worth a try and at this time things are looking good.

So from my side, RepRap is alife and kicking smiling smiley

Cheers
Björn

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/12/2014 07:50AM by Srek.


[www.bonkers.de]
[merlin-hotend.de]
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Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 10:04AM
How about CoreXY and CoreXZ?

http://forums.reprap.org/read.php?4,297740

http://forums.reprap.org/read.php?2,377858

I think that you will be seeing some additional movement soon, as a few key patents are scheduled to expire.....
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 10:13AM
For my part, I'd really like to see the documentation cleaned up so that an outsider could actually determine what the true state of things is, which machines were designed when, what the relative merits of each machine design are and how to pick which one to select.

I've been trying to do a millstrap, but have found the whole thing mystifying compared to milling.
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 11:50AM
I think reprap more alive then ever


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Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 01:01PM
What about being able to print with carbon fibers or other reinforcement fibers?

What is the longest length of chopped fibers that can currently be printed with?

What problems occur as your fiber length increases?

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/12/2014 01:02PM by sanman.
VDX
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 02:21PM
... I'm actually focussing on 'laserassisted fabbing' for changing the available material to any material, a particular laser can melt/fuse ... so the meanings for 'RepRap' and 'vitamins' could change soon winking smiley


Viktor
--------
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Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 03:32PM
God forbid it ever becomes mainstream. Satisfaction is the death of creativity.
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 03:55PM
Quote
WillAdams
For my part, I'd really like to see the documentation cleaned up so that an outsider could actually determine what the true state of things is, which machines were designed when, what the relative merits of each machine design are and how to pick which one to select.

I've been trying to do a millstrap, but have found the whole thing mystifying compared to milling.

And whom to you propose take the time to do this? With the nature of the Wiki it's possible those changes could be edited out at some point. The advancement in docs are going to be from project creators and those selling the wares. It's time consuming and I don't think that other than adding some tweaks that end users have found it's practical or even wise to try to implement a standardized or consistent instruction format without some sort of formal management structure in someone that has final say on what happens. The issue with comparisons and history of the machines is that not everyone is familiar with one variant let alone all of the variants. Many with the background don't have the time and those with the time don't necessarily have the background or experience.

One person may say that an i3 Rework is the best way to start and another that may or may not have the same experience or expertise could make another claim. It's as much about the quality of the content contributed as it is about the repuation and experience of the contributor. Without a benevolent dictator (or strong board or commitee) leading the way the lack of structure and ability for all to participate are each as much an asset as hinderance. I think that is one of the main reasons we see newer docs privately hosted even for non commercial projects as the creators can have absolute control over the content. The publsih under an open license so that others may copy and distribute it but they don't have to be concerned that someone else with whom they have no knowledge or experience changes their work without approval.

Case in point, Shapeoko has strong documentation because there is profit movtive involved. That money can be used to pay to create and maintain the docs. Same with MTW and the Mendelmax 2. Both of those projects have outstanding, consistent documentation. They benefit from being a single project and having a benevolent dictator that uses the income from the business side to support the cdos not only for the customers but for those that want to take a stab at DIY. This is how Linux, BSD and Apache to name a few got to where they are as well. Established companies that were using the software paid for people to develop ideas and contribute bug fixes and documentation. They are using these patches, docs and ideas in the course of their business so leveraging that is a great way to reduce costs internally from a business perspective and to contribute something back to those that helped make it possible in the first place.
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 03:58PM
@maboo: RepRap can be whatever you want it to be. It really only works if people identify a need and then spend time to met that need. The community is very full with people doing just that. The problem may be that they aren't focusing on areas that you are aware of. I for one have been doing a lot of experimentation on making more printable printers. GUS Simpson can almost print every single one of its non-electrical parts. Check my signature for lots of my crazy experimentation. All of it was done in the last 12 months and none of it would have happened without collaboration from this forum.

Bottomline: You are the community. You are at the rudder. Start a conversation about what you think we need to be working on and bring some ideas. Let the community help shape and morph those ideas into something even better. Take some of those ideas and experiment.

Side note: It is misleading to think of RepRap as one cohesive thing. We are not all part of a Borg Collective working tirelessly toward an agreed upon goal. (I have been watching 100's of hours of Star Trek while I have been working on my printers this summer.) We are a bunch of individuals that have our own goal. We don't even agree on what RepRap should be about. (Some people think I am off my rocker for making printers with 1kg of plastic. Some think I am just slightly disturbed.) That is okay. Luckily, we all want to move forward and share knowledge. So we each pick a personal journey and we help each other along the way.


ConceptFORGE
Wally, GUS Simpson, LISA Simpson, THOR Simpson, Sextupteron, CoreXZ
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 06:58PM
A lot is perception, if you only judge based on this forum and the media, you may get that impression.

Maker Fair continues to grow, in large part to 3d printing, which Reprap had a large part in.
The number of people attending the St. Louis 3d printer meetups continues to grow.
There is lots of development in hot ends right and electronics (32bit ARM).
There is also Core XY, though that seems to have cooled a bit (probably time of year).
Delta's are getting auto calibration working, and becoming more and more mainstream.
Mr. Seward is always working on something crazy (in a good way!).

So why does it seem slow?
Part of it is the time of year, some is media getting tired of 3d printed guns, and not to start a fight, but another part of it is this forum itself. I've seen more than a bit of new blood run out by people over-reacting to simple questions or ideas.
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 08:11PM
I would say that there hasn't been any leaps in 3D printing yet. Everything is really an evolution of previous designs and technologies. I think some of nicholas.seward's work has really started pushing reprap forward with some of his designs. I would not be surprised if an all printable 3d printer comes from his work.

Commercial home printing is still trying to reach parity with reprap, they have not developed anything that sets them apart in any way.

One thing that has died over the past 12 months is this forum. There have been quite a few posts about how to make this place better but not much has happened. I have found a lot of people have migrated towards google+ because of this. This place really needs an overhaul or at the least a new coat of paint.


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Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 08:15PM
@jzatopa: I agree that the forum is a problem. (The forum is still a great thing but it could most definitely be better.) It would be a hard fix. There is so much knowledge. To port it over to a new system or to just reorganize the system we have would be crazy hard.


ConceptFORGE
Wally, GUS Simpson, LISA Simpson, THOR Simpson, Sextupteron, CoreXZ
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 09:15PM
The current state of development/improvement is focused on hotends, extruders and new materials and those are stunningly important. Just because you dont see a new "cool toy" reprap doesnt mean development isnt going forward at warp speeds. Acetal (delrin) is about to become common and printable acetal is a HUGE step forward. For many mechanical requirements acetal can be superior to metal because of it's weight, machinability, slickness etc. I actually prefer acetal gears etc when they are appropriate. As for the delta.. yes theyre very cool and interesting. But theyre not some "giant advance in 3d printing".. theyre just a different, neat way to do it with their own drawbacks. I think the next big development in repraps is a 3 axis head. Those are rare even in ultrahigh end machining but theyre awesome and could be translated. Id bet they are still patented to death though.

In every endevour there are people, mostly those who dont know much or arent very imaginative who think "we've reached the end of what we can/will do".. if you doubt that check physics since the confirmation of the higgs particle... there are fools out there saying "well physics is done it's just tidying up now". And every 10 years some idiot puts out a book that we can quit doing science now because we know everything.

Imho we are at the single most important phase: materials development. And it is exploding as people realise that being the first to develop a new material could literally make you very very rich eventually. And our extruder/hotend designs are pretty nifty but imagine one you could feed ANY material through, even different diameters, and have it adapt. etc etc.

As far as the "self replicating".. repraps have never been self replicating and until we can print frames, drill rod, threaded rod etc etc etc it's not going to happen and it's a bit silly at thsi point. It was a grand idea but as far as 3d printers right now it's end-game is that it has made extruders and frame components etc cheap(er)
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 12, 2014 10:57PM
Quote
vegasloki

Case in point, Shapeoko has strong documentation because there is profit movtive involved. That money can be used to pay to create and maintain the docs.

Say what!?!

I'm getting paid for editing the wiki? I didn't know that.

William
(Who is not an Inventables employee and doesn't get a check)

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/12/2014 11:00PM by WillAdams.
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 02:06AM
Maybe i got the original question wrong, but it seems many see reprap, makers and 3d printing as practicaly the same. I don't and from how i understood neither did the original poster. Reprap is about a specific part of making and 3d printing, the part where one tries to create an as good as possible machine without reverting to industrialy manufactured specific parts. I have not the slightest problem with convergence here, but at this time it seems to me that the basic reprap idea is not pursued anymore by most people here. That is something i would like to see change again.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/13/2014 02:07AM by Srek.


[www.bonkers.de]
[merlin-hotend.de]
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Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 03:46AM
I'd agree, it's been about a year of nothing much- at least compared to the years before. 3D printers are a reasonable price, and reasonably reliable. I can make pretty much any plastic object I can think of and .15 is just fine for nearly everything I can think of.

For me, and perhaps many others the problem is as a non-professional user the immense amount of time modeling anything complex in CAD takes. I will spend a lot more time time printing when I can easily scan, repair, duplicate and remix interesting objects without hours cleaning up meshes. I'd like to print a cellphone case- modeling the complex curves of my cellphone in any reasonably precise way so I can even begin to design something interesting it at least 6 hours of work. CAD is not my hobby. Making something new is interesting, the labor intensive process of manually duplicating something is not.

With what's on the market at the moment it is as much modeling as scanning, and no consumer scanners really give you ready to print output of any accuracy. The Kinect One and the new batch of laser scanners coming down the pipe may reinvigorate interest in 3D printing. Certainly they are something I'm waiting for and expect to purchase.
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 04:38AM
Quote
WillAdams
Quote
vegasloki

Case in point, Shapeoko has strong documentation because there is profit movtive involved. That money can be used to pay to create and maintain the docs.

Say what!?!

I'm getting paid for editing the wiki? I didn't know that.

William
(Who is not an Inventables employee and doesn't get a check)

The docs to which I was referring are the Github repo that Edward maintains. Not to discount your work and the other contributors as it's a strong and essential part of any open source community. Those sources are needed not only for them to make the parts to sell, but for those of us that make machines from the sources. That support infrastructure likely would not exist in that way if not for the for profit company. There would be a community but having it supported by a commercial entity is exactly my point.
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 05:30AM
this question seems to have popped up a few times,

the answer is really relative to the areas of interest, eg firmware,hardware,software,modelling, but the question is predicated on the assumption that development breakthroughs happen on a schedule which they don't, we have plenty of things left to achieve the variable is simply time

we likely haven't yet seen the biggest breakthroughs in development , currently paste extrusion shows a lot of promise as the combinations of materials are pretty wide , not to mention those which haven't been made up yet




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Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 08:08AM
Quote
WillAdams
For my part, I'd really like to see the documentation cleaned up so that an outsider could actually determine what the true state of things is

Please go ahead! Editing the wiki is open to everyone!


Generation 7 Electronics Teacup Firmware RepRap DIY
     
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 08:16AM
Quote
vegasloki
Case in point, Shapeoko has strong documentation because there is profit movtive involved.

Huh? Shapeoko doesn't even have a wiki page. As such it isn't part of RepRap, just one of the many non-RepRap products.


Generation 7 Electronics Teacup Firmware RepRap DIY
     
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 08:34AM
Quote
jzatopa
One thing that has died over the past 12 months is this forum. There have been quite a few posts about how to make this place better but not much has happened. I have found a lot of people have migrated towards google+ because of this. This place really needs an overhaul or at the least a new coat of paint.

Two reasons for this:

1. People don't even try. About everybody can get server access, install or modify software. There's even money for additional hardware available.

2. While people move over to Google+, an even more simplistic forum, most recommendations for a RepRap forum overhaul point to more complex and more difficult to use software, like phpBB3.

Being attractive isn't trivial. My firm believe is, 80% of being attractive is visual design. I've done calls for design overhauls, with almost zero response. Peoples' words and peoples' doings are so faaar apart.


Generation 7 Electronics Teacup Firmware RepRap DIY
     
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 10:17AM
Oh, you mean the github pages w/ missing parts, and parts w/ mis-spelled names which I can't get Edward to update (see the To-do page on the wiki), and which he maintains/develops for the sake of the machine (he isn't an Inventables employee and only gets a small royalty on the machines they sell). Funny idea of strong, unless you mean the assembly docs, which I did mostly write and have been updating a bit.

I've edited a couple of pages here on the reprap side of the house, but reading through the forums and wiki is confusing and hasn't provided me w/ the necessary understanding to do anything which I'd consider really meaningful. I'll keep at it, but I'd find it a lot easier if there were more alternatives for solder less connections --- my old soldering iron didn't show up in my Father's estate and I'm not that wild about using the mini torch he apparently replaced it w/ or getting a new one.
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 10:23AM
@WillAdams: A western union splice (Google will show you how it is done.) if done properly can give you a good electrical connection and it can even withstand a lot of tension. It is strongly recommended that you solder it but that is up to you.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/13/2014 10:25AM by nicholas.seward.


ConceptFORGE
Wally, GUS Simpson, LISA Simpson, THOR Simpson, Sextupteron, CoreXZ
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 03:34PM
Quote
Traumflug
Quote
vegasloki
Case in point, Shapeoko has strong documentation because there is profit movtive involved.

Huh? Shapeoko doesn't even have a wiki page. As such it isn't part of RepRap, just one of the many non-RepRap products.

Shapeoko is a CNC router and while it cuts plastic it's not an additive process nor can it replicate many parts. There is an extensive Github, Wiki and active forum and user community.
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 13, 2014 04:17PM
@willadams

We're getting well off topic. I've got both Solidworks and Inventor assembilies open and see complete machines and used the Inventor files to cut a few sets of parts so far. The community there is strong and you've done a good job on the forum and with the Wiki.

There's no need to be defensive. This isn't a contest. It's a collection of like minded people that often disagree. Your abilites and passion could most certainly be used on Reprap.

Shapeoko is one thing. A Shapeoko. While there are a couple of versions (and some user made variants) it's still basically one thing. Reprap, OTOH is comprised of many different machines with each of those having variants that aren't published or well documented. As an example I've either built or supplied parts for at least 8 or 10 different variants with 3 or 4 consistently being built. My bot farm has 3 variants that basically shows the migration of the movement over the last few years. I've got i3 aluminum single plates being replaced by Rework variants that are an sgraber type melamine frame with an enhanced extruder. and the workhorse Mendelmax 2. Which is exactly the sort of confusion you reference but it is the essence of Reprap. It's not like Shapeoko in that it's not one single thing.

For starter machines I suggest a Printrbot Simple or an i3 Rework. Both are well documented and have wide community support from both users and vendors. The Printrbot will be about US$350 or so and the Rework between US$500-600 for a kit depending on vendor.

I agree that docs are one place where Reprap could be more comprehensive and consistent. That's a s much of a difference in the communities and the fact everyone here can have direct participation in the Wiki, as opposed to the benevolent dictator style used on the Shapeoko Wiki. The benevolent dictator style is how Linus runs the kernel project. When there is a free for all as is with Reprap the structure is disjointed and doesn't follow a standardized format and in some cases contains inaccurate information.
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 14, 2014 06:12AM
Quote
vegasloki
Shapeoko is a CNC router and while it cuts plastic it's not an additive process nor can it replicate many parts. There is an extensive Github, Wiki and active forum and user community.

Elsewhere, so no RepRap.

I struggle a bit with calling every cheap manufacturing machine a RepRap, just because the project owner happens to appear on IRC a few times. Or whatever makes people considering it a RepRap while cheap lathes and milling machines are not. And I'm perfectly fine with machines which are not part of RepRap. I own such stuff, too.


Generation 7 Electronics Teacup Firmware RepRap DIY
     
Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 14, 2014 09:25AM
Quote
Traumflug
Quote
jzatopa
One thing that has died over the past 12 months is this forum. There have been quite a few posts about how to make this place better but not much has happened. I have found a lot of people have migrated towards google+ because of this. This place really needs an overhaul or at the least a new coat of paint.

Two reasons for this:

1. People don't even try. About everybody can get server access, install or modify software. There's even money for additional hardware available.

2. While people move over to Google+, an even more simplistic forum, most recommendations for a RepRap forum overhaul point to more complex and more difficult to use software, like phpBB3.

Being attractive isn't trivial. My firm believe is, 80% of being attractive is visual design. I've done calls for design overhauls, with almost zero response. Peoples' words and peoples' doings are so faaar apart.

I understand some of the reasons but the work still needs to be done. I don't have the time or skills to help on this project but I would be willing to donate to pay for a profesional to do the work correctly. We could get some bids and see if we can collect enough to make it happen. I know that some people on here may not like ads but that would be another way to fund the work. People who are vehemently anti-ads could make a small donation to remove them and fund the care and upkeep of the site. Maybe instead of Adwords we could sell ad space / sponsor space to companies servicing the open source space. This is how many of the other forums I have frequent have funded themselves.


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Re: Has REPRAP come to a standstill?
July 14, 2014 10:15AM
Quote
vegasloki
I agree that docs are one place where Reprap could be more comprehensive and consistent. That's a s much of a difference in the communities and the fact everyone here can have direct participation in the Wiki, as opposed to the benevolent dictator style used on the Shapeoko Wiki. ... When there is a free for all as is with Reprap the structure is disjointed and doesn't follow a standardized format and in some cases contains inaccurate information.

Who's being dicatorial on the Shapeoko wiki?

Aside from not tolerating linkspam, there's never been an edit or text addition which wasn't welcome.

The fact that things are so disjointed on the reprap wiki makes it all the more important that there be an overall structure to things --- a chronological listing at minimum would be easy and would provide some structure and make things a bit easier to find.

Here's an example of the github docs which I want fixed: [github.com] (should be ...wasteboard.pdf)

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/14/2014 10:16AM by WillAdams.
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