People love food printing, astronauts too.
Fab@Home was recently mentioned in the Communications of the ACM.
Ive noticed that newer Fab@Homes tend to bind up more than their elder brethren. While making my lab's newest Fab@Home model 2, i think i came across the solution to the problem.
the Acrylic plates flex and can vary in thickness. This can lead to the system settling into different tensions and stresses based on these factors and the order of tightening of the screws. If the plate is in a bad configuration, it will cause the sleeve bearings to misalign ,and cause stiction and binding of the axis.
The solution seems to be changing the build order. By putting the shafts through the bearings on the bridge, carriage, and z table before screwing the plates together you lessen the stiction. With the carriage, you need to also put a tool on it before tightening all of the screws.
We have re organized the Launchpad into a project group. There are now separate projects for the Model 1 code, the FabInterpreter, FabStudio and other Fab@Home related projects. This will allow us to organize better as we develop more code. You can access each subproject from the fabathome project group or from their individual Launchpad pages
Project group: https://launchpad.net/fabathome
Model 1 : https://launchpad.net/fabathome-model1
Its amazing what you can do with a Fab@Home's multiple material printing capabilities. I printed a perferated sphere using a model made by Evan Malone. Latex painters caulk is a great support material for regular silicone. The painters acrylic latex softens when heated, while the silicone cures. Heat the model up, run it under water and bam the part is done.
PC world did a nice little video about 3d printers at the Bay area makerfair. Check it out.
Jonas Neubert, a fellow grad student at the Cornell Computational Synthesis Lab. Helped organize and Ignite talk for ithaca(http://igniteithaca.com/) and I volunteered to give a talk on personal fabrication.
Check it out on youtube
Thanks to Josh from SolidSmack.com for this article
We noticed a while ago that printing onto cellophane produced exceptionally smooth bottoms of parts. When the parts were made of silicone, they ended up sticking to any glass or acrylic surface. Since the Fab@Home is mostly smooth acrylic, this provides a nice way of making decorations for your unit. Simply print them out, let them dry and stick them on. Don’t forget to stick Fab@Home logos on your windows so people know that there are fabbers inside! John Amend form the CCSL decided to take this one step further and use a printed silicone sticker to hold up items around the lab and house.
Check out more on Flickr (http://www.flickr.com/photos/fabathome/sets/72157623847887626/)
While Building the blue Fab@Home unit, Jim smith and myself realized We had a slight problem. We had run out of idle pulleys for the X axis. SDP-SI had them on back order for about a month, and we really wanted to finish the construction. Luckily, SDP-SI had the CAD files for the part online, and we have an Objet 3d printer. The Object made quick work of the part and 15 minutes later we had 2 pulleys ready to go! Is this the first case of 3d printing piracy? Not quite, not too long ago a man 3d printed a police handcuff key.