Besides the RepRap Mendel that the space is putting together, I'm putting together an ORD Bot Hadron, the larger brother of the ORD Bot Quantum. It took me a long time to decide between this and SeeMeCNC's RostockMax. The first beta tester, Jeremy, brought an ORD Bot Quantum to Make Lehigh Valley quite awhile and showed off its impressive qualities.
In many basic ways, this is a simplified version of the RepRap based on MakerSlide and without the interest in being able to print as much of the printer as possible. I'm interested in comparing the time of assembly and results with the RepRap. It seems generally agreed that both printers are capable of equal quality. The typical Mendel may require more regular maintenance than an Ord Bot and require more effort to get well calibrated. The rigidity of the MakerSlide makes for a more stable platform.
The Ord Bot design is strictly a mechanical platform. Most kits only include the mechanical platform and steppers to get it moving. The come in various stages of assembly. The kit I purchased was from Automation Technologies, Inc.
Once I had the platform I had to decide what electronics and extruder I wanted to use. I'm going with Panucatt's X3 and heated bed for the electronics. My extruder choice is the brand new SeeMeCNC EZstruder extruder. (I'm sure to regret going with the bleeding edge, but its just so flexible.) I still need to pick up a hot end. I'll probably go with the J-Head when they come back in stock. I understand they usually are stocked at hotends.com on Friday afternoons at noon and are gone over the weekend.
I'm rather partial to the aesthetics of the Ord Bot over the RepRap also. The nice blue anodized aluminum and sleek smooth lines are nice. The ability to hide the cables inside the MakerSlide is also a great plus and the ability to expand it rather simply with just bigger or smaller pieces of makerslide is another notable feature.
So we have this fully working PCB Fabrication setup at the hackerspace now. If you're interested in getting started we recommend having something to fabricate. Designing a circuit could be done in Microsoft Paint, but for good results we suggest something a bit more... powerful to help you get component footprints on right among other things. Electronic Design Automation tools such as KiCAD fill that spot well.
If you are interested in putting together a design, check out this tutorial to give you a great kick start on using KiCAD to design your circuit board. You'll probably want to stick to a single side board for your first round. Lining up layers can be a bit tricky with our current system. We're working on getting a system in place to make this more predictable.
If you have problems, please feel free to drop a question on the mailing list or come by when the space is open some time.
The RepRap project is making progress. Check out the wiki page for the constantly improving documentation and watch as we put together the list of things to buy.
We hear Tony already has the plastic parts on the forge to help us boot strap the 3D printer community of the Lehigh Valley. I guess you could say, the reprap is beginning to take physical shape.
Make Lehigh Valley is hoping to raise $250 in donations to match another $250 to build a Reprap Prusa Mendel i2 3D Printer! We're hoping to be resourceful and keep the necessary cash around that $500 mark. Need for printed parts around the space abounds, and this will fill a huge gap in our ability to enable our minds. If you were at our first Town Meeting tonight, you probably heard about the 3D scanner - and the statue we scanned, and how it worked. Go donate!
We put together this video tour for you. We wanted you to come see the latest and greatest of our hackerspace from the comfort of your couch. Enjoy!
Now you've seen it. Come by some Thursday night and get the full-sensory HD tour. You won't believe how much better it is in person!
Our friends at iNetU sent over 5 Dell PowerEdge 2950s along with some Cisco PIX Firewalls and some load balancers to put towards the OpenStack Project that we're trying to get going. This will be the first hardware we have that supports the virtualization bit that makes so much difference. We're looking forward to growing our knowledge in what it takes to build a cloud using these machines.
We need to acquire hard drives to get these machines running. We also need to acquire or build a rack for them. Providing proper environmental control for the machines is also something that will take some effort in our current space with dust flying around and the significant temperature changes that occur.
Jared Steckl of MakeLV is the guest speaker at the next Lehigh Valley Tech Talk. You can find out more and sign-up to attend at the Lehigh Valley Tech Talk: Arduino meetup event page.
There already looks to be a pretty decent crowd planning to attend so this may fill up pretty quickly. The last Tech Talk event was also very well attended.
Tune in live now! https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=qBb2YnxIp8c#!
On January 26th at 2PM, Make Lehigh Valley will be hosting a talk by Jason Plum (@WarheadsSE of Arch Linux ARM/@ArchLinuxARM) on the Raspberry Pi, Arch Linux ARM, and uses of the Raspberry Pi for applications such as: beer brewing, Arduino replacement, and home services. The talk, “A Slice of Pi”, will discuss the ins and outs of the ARM architecture as is applicable to the Raspberry Pi and similar devices, along with the critical differences from what you may have come to expect in other architectures.
Please join us! Feel free to come by early/stay late and hang out for awhile.
Bridgeworks Enterprise Center, Suite 101
905 Harrison St.
Allentown, PA 18103
Questions can be directed to @makelv on twitter, or via IRC in #makelv on freenode.net
We're excited to be taking a bus to World Maker Faire in NYC this year on Saturday 9/29 and everyone in the Lehigh Valley is invited. We're starting in Allentown, PA and we'll make a second stop in Phillipsburg, New Jersey if there is interest.
Since we'll have a big enough group, we're eligible for 25% off group rate on the tickets to the faire so your ride includes entry to the fair. We're using WePay to facilitate bringing the group together. Use the "Get A Ride" button to get your ride and ticket to the faire purchased. If you've already purchased a ticket, you can still ride with us, just be sure to select the appropriate ride ticket.
You can get your hands on the Event Program here.
Directions to the Science Center can be found on their website.