From RepRap
Jump to: navigation, search

About Me | Class Blog | Wiki Pages

Blog 1: Thingiverse Printable Designs

Blog Description: "The objective for this blog was to go online to and look for printable objects in which other people have actually printed. Several particular design criteria we had to look for including: something amazing/beautiful, something funny or strange, something useless, something useful, something which surprised you".

Blog 1a: Something Amazing

In this case, I found a world famous video game character: GlaDOS, also known as the evil machine who loves to test and lies about giving you cake at these tests in Portal. I found this amazing since the guy printed the parts very well. The character is unmistakable. He also added some robotics pieces to make it move and act as a lamp. Check out the clip!

Blog 1b: Something Funny

I just thought this was funny. The picture is self explanatory.

Blog 1c: Something Useless

What is more useless than a useless box?

Blog 1d: Something Useful

I lose my head phones all the time and they get tangled even more frequently. I will be printing these ASAP!

Blog 1e: Something Surprising

I just did not think this was possible, but then again, I have never actually considered it...

Blog 2: The Open Source Ecology Kit from Marcin Jakubowski

Blog 2a: The Ted Talk

Marcin Jakubowski did a ted talk on his ideas on the open source farming equipment. His idea was that industrial grade equipment can be made just as efficiently at a much lower cost. I think it's a very effective idea. Why pay for something much more expensive if you can just build it? In fact, according to the wiki page about him, he has built and constantly uses his tractor, compressed earth brick press, 150 ton hole puncher, heavy duty drill press, and more!

Blog 2b: The New Yorker Article On Him

Emily Eakin of the New Yorker recently wrote an article on Marcin Jakubowskion 12/23/2013 which can be found here. While reading the article, I realized Emily isn't too enthusiastic about the ideas, Marcin, or his enthusiastic visitors. Personally, I think he has a great idea going for him and definitely deserved a much more praise-sounding article.

Blog 2c: Interested Professors

Unfortunately, I do not know of any professors who would be interested in supporting an idea like Marcins's.

Blog 3: Kansas Teen Creates 3D-Printed Prosthetic Hand

On January 31, 2014, an article was posted about a Kansas teenager who printed a 3D-Printed prosthetic hans for the son of a family friend who suffered from a rare condition known as limb difference in which the boys fingers never really grew properly. The teen got the idea, and possibly even the print itself from a site dedicated to creating an open source prosthetic hand design called Robohand. Robohand was started after a man named Richard Van As lost the fingers on his right hand in an accident in May of 2011. He collaborated with a man in South Africa named Ivan and together built the first robotic prosthetic hand made out of aluminum in 2012.

Since the first robotic hand, other people who either lost their fingers or their whole hand have had the privelege of getting some normalcy back with the robotic hands. Such stories include here is a article from The Christian Science Monitor about a father, McCarthy, who 3D-Printed his son a prosthetic hand. The very design came from Ivan Owen and Richard Van As. Another article written by NPR in June 18, 2013 writes about Richard's story and even refernces McCarthy's story.

If I wanted to print a prosthetic hand, I would either look for one on Thingiverse or GrabCAD. If neither option was available, I would probably start from scratch on Solidworks.

Blog 4: Other's Comments on Blog 2

LEE Schwartz:

Lee, like, myself, saw the potential for the OSE project to grow and have the possibility to become very useful. Unfortunately, I do not think that it will grow as large as what Lee might think. I really don't beilieve it will get so big that John Deere will try to shut it down.

Todd Troutman:

I think Todd has a reasonable outlook on the growth of the project. As much as we wish that open source projects could run the world effectively, they really can't. It can grow to a point to be reasonably be successful, but still be overshadowed by the larger companies, mainly because of their manufacturing abilities. Even then, they have teams of people who run maintenance.

Yuan Chai:

Chai seems to hold a bit more of a negative view of the project than I do. He makes valuable points of why it wouldn't be totally successful, but I think it can expand much farther than how he described.

Graham Deever

Reading Graham's blog reminded me of reading Lee's blog. Both show a large amount of enthusiasm for the project and can see where the projects would be most useful.

Nam Pham

Nam's blog seemed to also be very enthusiastic for the project. He did provide a valid point though. The project does have the potential to hurt the income of the larger companies.

Jess Mewkalo

I think Jess also has a reasonable view of the project. It definitiely has the potential for something to be successful, but not everyone will have the know-how to be able to do it.

Kevin Moyer

Kevin seems to worry that the open source community will be attempted to be shut down by large corporations. Personally, I'm not sure that enough people have the knowledge or care to affect the large businesses that much in order to make a move. Sure they will face some losses, but I think their main concern is still how well are they doing compared to their corporate competitors.

Dongao Yang

Dongao was clear that he did not think the project would be that effective overall. However, he did make some valid points. The durability of these products and their safety will be more likely to fall through because the designs will be much simpler. The only way to be truly effective is to make the models as close to the original designs (without breaking patents) as possible, then have upgraded pieces and materials to maximize the efficiency and durability.

Vinny Iachini

Vinny seemed supportive of the project, but realized it's limits in that most people may not have the ability to make such a kit.

Blog 5: How 3D Printing Has Done Over The Years

The Big Step

I think one of the biggest steps in 3D-printing was the first time students were offered to use a 3D printer for their classes. I can honestly say that I have heard nearly every engineering student I have talked to talk about 3D printing something either with a reprap printer or the 3D printer at the learning factory. For a student, having the ability to 3D print something for a project reduces the time it takes to fabricate something, it allows for a better visual for a concept, and it expands the understanding of what and how things can be made. I have personally been part of a project where we made a vacuum using many 3D printed parts such as the diffuser, impeller, separator, and component frames. The vacuum was nearly the best in the class.

Not So Important

Something I saw I really didn't find that important was getting a 3D printed model of your unborn baby. First of all, I think a picture is useful enough on seeing the progression. Second, if there is going to be a 3D model, I would rather not wait for it to be 3D printed and just see it on some CAD program. Third, depending on the progress of the baby's growth, it might look kinda creepy. Overall, I think it would take way too much time and effort to see something when all I would need is a 3D CAD model.

What I Want To Learn More

Something I saw on the timeline that I thought I could get into was the rapid printing of circuit boards. Lately, I have been getting into more mechantronics, mirco-electronics, controls, robotics, etc... Being able to print off circuit boards to make more permanent designs would actually be very useful instead of using temporary wiring boards. Also, some designs, such as my current ME 445 project, have space constraints in which the amount of space can be maximized with 3D printed circuit boards.

Blog 6: The Future

There are a lot of directions to pursue when moving forward. Although, for RepRap users, I think maintenance is in the best direction for everyone. Over the semester, I have come across more problems than I realized were components on these printers. First of all, I plan on starting with monitoring the feed rate of the filament. Too many times our printers would think they are printing, without actually printing. It would be nice to actually have a system that checks to see if the printer is ok. Honestly, for a complex device that runs numerous codes and has numerous independent pieces, it has extremely few checks to make that it is running properly by itself. Sure, half of the class is to make sure that we can make the printers run; however, simple checks should be added to maximize the efficiency of these printers, which in turn will reduce our tempers. But seriously, more of these checks would make our lives a lot easier.

Blog 7: Using 3D Printed Parts to Replace Expensive Lab Equipment

The ability to reduce costs with just as efficient parts is the dream for everyone in the education and research system. Why pay for expensive equipment made mostly of pieces that are great, but unnecessarily expensive, when there are just as sufficient parts that could be printed rather than purchased, possibly fabricated, and shipped? Unless the parts were important, most wouldn't. The Guardian wrote an article on the very subject. They explained how 3D printing lab equipment could allow facilities in poverty effected areas to be able to conduct sufficient research on lower budgets. Personally, I try to go for more lasting products, which tend to be more expensive. However, over my education, I have learned that not all parts and pieces of equipment are required to have a maximum lifespan. Also, some pieces of equipment can become outdated as time goes on. If the parts become outdated, it would be economically efficient for them to recycle the material to create updated parts.

One good example of this online is the story of a PhD student who built an Atomic Force Microscope out of 3D printed parts, LEGO pieces, computer parts and an Arduino Board. The pieces they made and the expensive ones they replaced helped them save almost $100,000. Although, this piece of equipment sounds really hi-tech for something that can be made from simple pieces and 3D printed parts. It almost sounds too good to be true. Looking at the images, I would say the whole thing is not 3D printable. There are definitely parts visibly in there that aren't 3D printed. Also, the fact that the device is extremely sensitive to small movements, pieces holding the most sensitive parts are more likely not 3D printed. However, I'm sure most of the other parts holding pieces like motors, the Arduino, etc, are made from 3D printed parts since their primary function will most likely be to hold items together in an assembly.

Blog 8: A Review of IP and 3D Printing

This week's blog is based on a 10 page review/article on 3D printing, IP, and their futures. This article was definitely a longer read than one's in the past, and truth be told, didn't seem as interesting initially. However, having read through the article, I found that the article provided some good insight on the impact of how 3D printers affect how intellectual property will be used, dispersed, and obtained. It really makes one think of how people view intellectual property. I mean, I think information should always remain free, but I also believe one should make a decent profit from their ideas. Unfortunately, the two don't always coincide. Before I go more in depth about the article, I want to go into a little bit more on intellectual property. Intellectual property is the ownership of specific non-physical item which includes but is not limited to music, artwork, and ideas/designs that are not considered common sense. Intellectual property of an individual is protected under laws designed for these situations called PATENTS, COPYRIGHTS, TRADE SECRETS, and TRADEMARKS. A PATENT, according to [] is the exclusive rights to an idea or product that has been granted by the government for the permission of the sole individual or group to manufacture, utilize and sell the idea. Everyone else may be allowed to use, make, or sell the part, but usually with a large cost to be payed to the owner of the patent. A COPYRIGHT, also according to [] a copyright is the legal right to be the only one to reproduce, publish, and sell a piece of writing such as a book or song for a limited period of time. A TRADE SECRET is information, techniques, etc... that companies may have that their competitors may not have. Pepsi and Coke may have trade secret formula mixing methods. A TRADEMARK, according to, is any name, symbol, letter, word, or mark that is used to make a product more definitive to those who made it. The most common examples are Apple, Microsoft, Intel, Dodge, Ford, Nissan, etc...

After reading this article, we were asked to identify a few things, one of which are the five I's. I think the five I's are INFRINGEMENT, IDENTIFICATION, IMPRACTICAL/IMPOSSIBLE, & IRREVELEANT. INFINGEMENT, to IP is something that creates a lot of grey area. Those who want to market their ideas will try to call an infringement on any idea that seems similar, much as they do now. As long as there are people who want to profit on their ideas, there will always be cases of infringement. IDENTIFICATION is being able to identify whether a design built counted as an infringement. IMPRACTICAL/IMPOSSIBLE means that fighting infringement will become increasingly difficult until it is either impractical or impossible. IRRELEVANT means IP's will no longer be relevant. From what I read of the article, I'm honestly not sure if I totally agree or disagree. I think that IP's will stick around for a long time. I think that open sourcing and IP's will come to an equilibrium. The most complex ideas and designs will be considered IP, but the rest will be open sourced. There are some designs that seem creative or original but are found commonly that act as sort of the grey area of IP's and open source. These Creative Commons, it think will be completely open source.

Blog 9: Filament

With any material, there are good quality sources, bad quality sources, and everything in between. Who you get the material from may be the matter of a good, problem reduced print, or a monstrosity of a print even after hours on top of hours of just slicer and printer adjusting to get the filament to print without complete failure. The filament supplied is most commonly of two different sizes, 3 millimeters in diameter or 1.75 millimeters in diameter; which are made of mostly of either PLA of ABS. When you order the materials, they come in approximately 1 or 2 pound spools of whatever color you order. Here is an outside sourced list of places to order materials. According to this list, kbellenterprises, Matter Hackers, Just PLA, Maker Geeks, Monoprice, and 3D Printing Supplies are some of the cheapest. Exercize caution though. Sometimes cheaper means catastrophic failure of your print.

Dual extruding is something that can greatly expand what we can print. Potential for dual extruders could double the number of printable prints. If the class is to phase into a new part of the 3D printing world, it is important to look into new materials that could make this future possible. One of the easiest materials found online is PVA. PVA is a water soluble material that could be used to print more complex shapes and then removed in a bowl of water. It also sticks to PLA very well.

If I were to choose a company to purchase support material. I would go through, which has a variety of suppliers in them already.

Blog 10: Hot Tips

Hot tips are one of the most important components of the 3D printer. They ensure that the material will melt at the right temp that will stick to the bed of the printer without issue. Unfortunately, these components can also be one of the most tempermental components of the printer. There are quite a few different tyupes of hot tips that can be used on a printer. The one Penn State uses is a modified version of the Bowden extruder. The setup uses a stepper motor and gears to extrude and retract the material for printing. Another tip is the Prusa nozzle. It is a 303 stainless steel with a built in heating element and takes up less space than the Bowden extruder. It prints several materials including ABS, PLA, PC, and Nylon. These are two good tips. There are, however, some places to avoid. One of these places might be 3D Printing Supplies. The site has a very little selection in comparison to some other sites and the prices also seem to be higher too. If I were to choose a supplier, I would go for the Prusa tip. It appears easy to set up and use.

Blog 11: Show & Tell

There were a lot of interesting show and tells this semester. We had hot tip discussions, support material discussions, I even did a tutorial on using Repetier. One of the ones I really liked was Drew Golterman's blog on 3D scanning. As I was remaking parts for the spindle that were lost, I kept thinking, I really wish I could just scan these parts. Unfortunately, I couldn't figure out the program and was too busy fixing the Gold printer up to figure it out. But I think the application would have been very helpful.

Blog 12: Review of Blog 5

LEE Schwartz:

Lee's blog mentioned three events, Chuck Hull's invention of the first 3D printer, an article in 2005 called "The Machine That Can Replicate Anything", and things on the printability of food and sugar. The first was to recognize the first occurrence of 3D printing. The second was to recognize possibly the first public showing off of the 3D printer, and the third was more looking into the future of 3D printing in areas of food and biology.

Todd Troutman:

Todd's blog mentioned a few things from the timeline. I definitely agree with the posting of Thingiverse as a huge leap in 3D printing. Not everyone knows how to make parts on CAD programs.

Yuan Chai:

Chai mentioned a lot of events in this blog. He gave a huge list of different achievements of different components such as Thingiverse, a 3D scanner, a Mendel, and others. It was very extensive.

Graham Deever

Graham, like Chai, gave a list of events for specific items such as 3D printing and security, the 3D scanner, and Thingiverse. Thingiverse is definitely an important event in 3D printing history.

Nam Pham

Nam defintitely had some interesting events in his timeline. The one I found interesting was the article he wrote on 3D printing possible being overhyped because someone was able to 3D print pieces of a guitar. Although it is not some much a huge part of the timeline, it is still cool to hear about it in the news before 3D printing is just an occurrence.

Jess Mewkalo

One of Jess's timeline points really caught my attention. I think it is really cool that cartilage can be 3D printed. Although, this seems like a technology that may become a Hollywood exploit with people getting noses replaced with the "perfect" 3D printed nose.

Kevin Moyer

Kevin had a good timeline piece involving the origination of the .stl files. It is funny to think, what other file could replace it? Although .iges does come to mind...

Zachary Cameron

One of Zachary's posts that caught my eye was 3D printing Titanium. Titanium is a very ideal metal in that it is bio-acceptable, extremely strong and durable, and lightweight in comparison to tougher metals. The ability to 3D print titanium pieces would appear to be very ideal.

Eva Abeniacar

Eva had a really interesting post on the ability to 3D print objects into one's spine. Procedures like that are extremely delicate. The fact that it can be done is actually exciting.

Blog 13: Review of Blog 7

LEE Schwartz:

Lee had some interesting views on the first article. I definitely agree with him on the competition of businesses being a good thing. The more companies compete with each other, the better it is for the consumer; unless they start merging. Then it is not good for the consumer.

Todd Troutman:

I like the way Todd thinks on further improving the design from the second article by replacing some of the simpler pieces with 3D printed pieces. Further improving designs is always a good thing.

Yuan Chai:

Chai made a good point about IP's in developing areas are at great risk of being exploited. What should be higher quality stuff could end up being made incorrectly and could possibly end up hurting people.

Graham Deever

Graham provided an astounding view of "revolutionary advances." He believes that the world is not ready for such advances with everyone trying to claim property rights over them. I'm n ot sure I agree. I think that this competition between companies allows us to advance at a higher rate so the next person can claim a right to the next new thing.

Nam Pham

Nam provided an interesting point on the AFM nanoscope. The calibration of the nanoscope might actually be more difficult because the pieces are done with 3D printers. Look how hard it is to keep 3D printers working let alone a nanoscope.

Jess Mewkalo

Jess made a very good point about these technologies becoming closed sourced and kept from those who may need it. Not everyone will want to use the technology to help others at all.

Kevin Moyer

Kevin definitely had some good target countries that could very well use 3D printed technologies. He goes into depth on the uses in the Ukraine and Syria.

Zachary Cameron

The Billy Mays comment caught my attention for sure. It was definitely an attention grabber. But having 3D printable lab equipment does sound nice...

Eva Abeniacar

Eva did mention that not all of the projects we find are not necessarily open source, like the AFM nanoscope.

Blog 14: Review of Blog 8

LEE Schwartz:

Lee made a good point about IP enforcement becoming increasingly difficult. It definitely will be getting more and more difficult.

Todd Troutman:

I think Todd might be correct on the concepts of IP protection being consistent in the future, but the items in question will change in terms of those rules.

Yuan Chai:

Chai definitely had an interesting view on the future of IP's. He believes that there may be a new system that will protect IP's. I think it might be possible for a whole new setup to form.

Graham Deever

Graham's blog seemed very short, much like most of my blogs. He didn't really write much to comment on though.

Nam Pham

I definitely agree with Nam that IP's will become obsolete. I think they will be around for a long time.

Jess Mewkalo

Jess made a good point that with high restrictions on IP's that more knock-offs may be circulating around, which could lead to problems.

Kevin Moyer

Kevin made a good point about people losing originality with more open information. Designs could end up just being recycled rather than more innovative.

Zachary Cameron

Zachary, like most as it turns out, believe copyrights will still be around for a long time. I agree with him.

Eva Abeniacar

Eva brings an interesting point about open source stuff. People will always want to look for something that's free and there will be people who will make that happen, regardless the cost. we already see this today with music and programs.

Blog 15: Review of Blog 11

LEE Schwartz:

Lee mentioned Drew's 3D scanning blog. It was different than the one Todd did. Lee went into more detail explaining how the 3D scanning program Drew mentioned works.

Todd Troutman:

Todd made his blog on the show and tell of 3D printed chocolate.

Yuan Chai:

Chai wrote about Todd's show and tell on 3D pritning a building. In his blog he made several references to other fields looking into the technology.

Graham Deever

Graham, like a lot of others, including me, seemed very interested in the 3D scanning presentations.

Nam Pham

Nam also was fascinated with the 3D scanner, as was many others.

Jess Mewkalo

Jess also liked the 3D scanning show and tells.

Kevin Moyer

Kevin appears to be one of the few who did not mention 3D scanning. He decided to discuss the applications of bioprinting instead. It is a very cool and a hugre break-through area of 3D printed technologies.

Zachary Cameron

Zachary also wrote his blog on the bioprinting show and tell.

Eva Abeniacar

Eva took a different turn. She decided to talk about Todd's expansion of 3D printing into 3rd world countries to enhance their living at a lower cost.