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Video Meet the Robisons and Their Low-Cost RepRap Kit (Video) 67

It seems like less than an hour since Slashdot ran a Report From HOPE: The State of Community Fabrication. Now we have a video about a Massachusetts mother and son team we met at HOPE that had so much trouble with commercial RepRap machines that they designed their own and started marketing it under the name Robison Industries, a company they seem to be starting on the fly that uses their local hackerspace as its manufacturing location. Interested in RepRap? Maybe not yet, but as devotees of the concept point out, nobody outside a small circle of geeks was interested in personal computers at first, but they're ubiquitous today. Will we all have 3D printers on our desks in a few years? Good question. round us up in 2020 or 2025 at our local hackerspace and we may have an answer for you.

For those interesting in further reading, a selection of links mentioned in the video:

Don't forget: Slashdot welcomes reader video submissions. Email robin at for info.

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Meet the Robisons and Their Low-Cost RepRap Kit (Video)

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  • by TheCarp ( 96830 ) < minus pi> on Thursday July 19, 2012 @03:39PM (#40702911) Homepage

    I paid over $900 for the kit I built mine from. Worth every penny if you ask me. In fact, I am already seeing the benefits of rapid design. I went from having never done any sort of 3d modeling or design apart from with hand tools to making my own custom parts pretty quick.

    More than that, its the rapid prototyping that ROCKS. Its not just that I can design a part and have it made. I always could do that if I wanted to spend the money...but I can design it... print it (in whole or part) and see the results in minutes or hours not days or weeks. Just last night I stopped a print after 20 minutes because the entire subpart I needed to test was done enough for my purposes.

    I can go through 4-5 design iterations in 1 night with design features that would have otherwise required special equipment and more time. I can print out threaded parts, with no need to tap or turn them.

    A bit much for an impulse buy, but, do you really think a tool like this is the sort of thing you should impulse buy? They are really amazing tools, and limited mostly by your imagination.

    That said, they take time to learn how to use effectively, and a fair amount of manual tinkering. Want one that doesn't? Expect to pay ALOT more...and even then... a friend of mine has a professional model where he works. Its not that it takes no tinkering, its just that, at the price they pay for it, its worth it to pay some guy to come out and do the tinkering for you.

    getting it down to that range, I am not going to say is a bad thing, but, it just means there will be more of them, sitting in boxes, collecting dust, and otherwise, in the posession of people who played with them for a week and then lost interest....

    True it would put them, faster, into the hands of those who really want them and will use them but can't afford one right now, but, what will you be putting in their hands for that price?

    All that said, there is a CNC milling machine the Mantis-9 that could be realized somewhere in that price range (havn't priced out the electronics, but the non-electronic hardware is $100... another $100-200 for electronics depending on the options, though possibly less)

    With that you can mill PCB to make custom circuit boards.... with the same benefits... rapid prototyping.

    Will I make end final parts on it? Sure, why not? Already do, already printed a nice little figurine for the wife (Crest of Hyrule!)... but...its real win is in rapid prototyping.

"You must have an IQ of at least half a million." -- Popeye