Adventures in 3D Printing

Be patient, you will make a ton of mistakes and that is how you learn,” according to Jason Preuss, who is referring to 3D printing. Preuss is a part of the membership at Kzoo Makers, and also a 3D area zone leader. You can usually find Preuss in the 3D print area on Thursday evenings or check out his website here.

November 2012 became an important turning point for Preuss. This is when he acquired his first printer. Preuss has been busy creating during the last 4.5 years, and sometimes he has a chance to show the results to the public. Most recently, Preuss traveled to the San Francisco area to be a part of THE Bay Area Maker Faire, one of the flagship maker faires world wide, from May 19-21st. How did he end up in California?

“At the Midwest Reprap festival (MRRF) I met Mara from Matterhackers and shortly after we started working on a plan to get the clock to Makerfaire,” Preuss said.

The clock mentioned is Preuss’ grandfather clock print, specifically revealed at MRRF. The clock is six foot two, and took 1400 hours to print with PLA. Preuss noted that he used ESUN brand for the dark brown areas and Colorfabb for the light brown.

Preuss said “It was the second large scale clock I printed. The main lesson I learned was to add pegs so everything fit together well and not to skip any false plates in the wood pattern.”

The wood pattern is where Preuss starts. He purchases, then scans, a scroll saw woodworking pattern. Preuss tends to use GIMP to clean up the scans, and Inkscape to create the file where the wood is supposed to be. OpenSCAD is his choice to create the stl files, the type of file that the 3D printer requires.

How does one get a six foot two clock from Kalamazoo, Michigan, to San Francisco, California? Preuss shipped it UPS ground. Preuss also displayed an example of the new Velocity Painting technique along with some examples of his photo to print technique. Before exhibiting at the Maker Faire, Mara at MatterHackers took the time to chat with Preuss. You can watch the interview here.

In a May 22nd Facebook post, Preuss (pictured third from the left) wrote “Sitting in the San Francisco airport wrapping up a really cool 3d print adventure. Started on Wednesday in Orange County where I was given VIP treatment at the 3d print company Matterhackers along with a bunch of 3d print Youtubers (yes there is such a thing) for a huge meetup. From there I flew up to San Fran where I was an exhibitor at the World Maker Faire (the big one). I met a ton of interesting people, had Grant from Mythbusters walk past my booth (those camera men are totally security detail) and my clock won an Editors Choice award. Good thing I go back to work tomorrow so that inflated ego can be swiftly dealt with 😀. Looking forward to being home as I had to do the trip solo.”

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