July 4, 2011 Leave a comment
After the intoxicating joy of making, what impressed me most at Maker Faire were the low-cost tools available nowadays. When I was studying manufacturing the equipment of fabrication was costly, was mostly human-controlled, was large and heavy and messy. CNC was around but few machines were controlled by computer. It was a playground for seasoned craftsmen with deep pockets or skilled workers in manufacturing.
Not any more!
Printers translate 3D models made in free software into three dimensional objects.
Laser cutters engrave and cut images with extreme precision onto materials.
CNC mills guided by software grind away material revealing creations.
Laser scanners can turn real world objects into software models.
Economy versions of all the above and mor can be had cheaply.
One shopping list I created came to less than $5,000.
I’m tempted … but first I have much to learn.