After trying to build two 3D printers, I got frustrated. You have to realize, with as much potential 3D printers may have, they’re still being built and designed by amateurs. Others at Jaxhax have tried building 3D printers as well but have come up short with similar problems. I built a Reprap huxley that had a couple critical design flaws with the extruder, I ultimately gave up on it, and bought what appeared to be one of the higher end 3D printers out there, a Makerbot Thing-O-Matic, which after building it I realized had some feeding issues with it’s extruder as well, I ultimately gave up on it, and sold it for 40% of the $2,000 I paid for it in parts…
Makerbot’s support was also terrible, I will likely never buy anything from them again. Which isn’t a problem since there’s about a thousand new 3D printer companies that have sprung up in the last year.
So now I’ve started a website for 3D printer reviews so that there can be some better accountability for 3D printer manufacturers, and their parts.
I’m calling this site Triple-D-Reviews as in 3D Reviews. You can check it out here: www.tripledreviews.com
Insite Renewable Energy, LLC.
(DBA: Insite Renewables) is a new company that I’ve started in response to the difficulty I became aware of in participating in clean energy alternatives. The companies main goal is to create new products that will make it more convenient for consumers to install their own clean energy power sources in buildings without having to go through the hassle of hiring a contractor and being held up by the permitting process.
To start, we plan on manufacturing a spectrum of solar energy devices to take advantage of the solar energy available in windows with some new devices called Solar Shutters, that take on a familiar design of plantation shutters with a renewable twist. Embedded solar cells allow them to collect sunlight for use in other applications within a home to help reduce an electric bill while going green.
More information about this exciting clean energy venture can be found at the Insite Renewables website here: www.insiterenewables.com
While I was enrolled at UNF, I think I got bored of the monotonous work of creating uncreative things. When I got my first apartment on Southside (a one bedroom apartment, I rented out the sunroom of) I tried building a 3D printer, and realized that it wasn’t working out nearly the way it was supposed to. 3D printers almost go hand in hand Makerspaces, and I think somewhere down the line 3D printers were first conceived in a makerspace. But regardless we didn’t have a makerspace in Jacksonville, so there was really no help for my non-working 3D printer aside from what I could read on the internet. So ultimately I’d tried getting people together who were also interested in makerspaces in Jacksonville. I formed a group on facebook, with really only my roommate at the time and myself. He wasn’t much help with anything, but he was a redditor, and he invited me to an annual reddit meetup in Jax, where I met a very cool guy named Ronnie. There were now three of us in the facebook group. I started a weekly newsletter, and we started drumming interest for a makerspace in Jacksonville with some weekly meetings at my apartment. We finally got up to about 20 people who were interested in actually getting a space, Ronnie started scouting out some warehouse space until we found a place we could finally agree on. All we needed at this point to open the doors was some money for rent, but even with what we could all afford at the moment we didn’t have enough to open the space. One member, Ziggy, was nice enough to be an angel investor and throw down half of what we needed to get going. We opened the 7,000 sq. ft. warehouse space in downtown Jax the next month and started moving in.
It was completely empty, except for some big white pillars. No walls, no air-conditioning.
Fast forward a year or so, we’ve built out the space with specialized rooms for electronics, art, metal and wood working. We’ve also got a huge collection of donations, and more stuff really than we know what to do with. We have a computer lab, lots of computer, a couple 3D printers some members have been working on. We’ve got a classroom, about 8 board members, and we’ve incorporated the space as Jaxhax, Inc. with the possibility in the future of forming a non-profit organization for donation of some bigger equipment. Also in an odd twist, we’ve come out as one of the larger makerspaces in existence. A bit surprised we haven’t been contacted yet by DARPA or anyone else. Anyways! Here’s to the future of hacking things!