Their heating appliance designs are not too good. The one that heats a water vessel has liquids above a non-sealed box with electrical wiring. The toaster uses parts from another toaster, plus CNC milled plates and 3D printed parts. More expensive than a standard toaster, and looks iffy on electrical safety.
Or, if you're a makerspace in the market for larger quantities and want to standardize, find a local vendor of extrusion (80/20, Misumi, Futura, MB Kit, etc) that will have the oddball fittings you may need on hand locally.
It's true that 80/20 will not sell you their dies, but they are happy to give away free CAD libraries of all their parts. There are subtle differences between different manufacturers, but everyone makes parts that are compatible with it and you probably shouldn't depend on the tiny features that won't match. It looks like OpenGrid saw a proliferation of too many 'standards' that were not open-source, and thought "We'll make a new standard that will be better than the others because it's open", and ended up adding a worse (less strong, less adjustable) standard product with limited adoption.
On the electrical boxes, they seem to be proud of their homemade enclosures. What they probably don't realize is that you can buy an IP67, hinged, IEC-rated enclosure with continuously welded seams from Saginaw or Hoffman with built-in grounding lugs, backplane, and latches for $80.
they don't, their website is a marketplace just like amazon's, these days.
> There exist modular construction systems that operate according to the same principles, like the T-profiles made by 80/20 inc. However, in the modular construction systems that we have introduced above, everyone is allowed to design and produce parts, as long as these parts are compatible with the basic set of rules.
Which also includes a link to http://www.8020.net/ .
millions of manufacturers over the world, all doing their own designs, but you can screw most cabinet door hinges with the same holes in the wood just fine.
or vesa mounts. etc. lots of industries already saw how good it is.
now, others profit from the lie that this is impossible. like sony using its monopoly on some markets to try to push silly things like minidisc, memorystick, etc. or Dyson making vacuum attachments that aren't interchangeable with even their own equivalent models. Which make them filty rich since a fool is born every minute, unfortunately.
Which seems to be a standard feature on all 4 apartments/houses heating appliances I am familiar with, sourced from three different brands.
I've used exclusively https://us.misumi-ec.com/ for all my extrusion needs. They're one of the best companies I've ever worked with. Every order is a "custom order" - you tell them what you want including cutting, tapping, drilling.. You name it. Tolerances for a 20mmx20mm is 1mm cut. 15x15 tolerance is down to .5mm !
Their prices are also very reasonable, and shipping is good. I've also had a weird question about tolerance of a right-angle bracket, and their system imported the data wrong. Told that to the tier 1 support, and they went and found an engineer. Yeah, 5 minutes from calling to talking to the engineer responsible for that line. (Damn!)
The only caveat is they can't easily calculate shipping the first time a package shows up in the area. But after 1 delivery to a zip code, they can accurately estimate it.
My printer in action: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7EG-x7TBVng
The scale of the machine: https://imgur.com/a/GJWSf4t
I should qualify this, lest it come across as mere snark - from my meanderings on the internet and a couple of visits to 3D printing shows, the machines that seemed capable/large/demi-industrial were made from extrusions and t-slots.
Certainly, where it comes to rigid forms necessary for (none- heavy industrial) CNC and such, they are heavily used.
eg. Germany's BigRep http://c93fea60bb98e121740fc38ff31162a8.s3.amazonaws.com/wp-...
As far as “decent”, I do a lot with my sub $1k machines. The expensive ones seem to work better, but the price is so high I don’t consider them. And I come from a background of CNC machining where I’m familiar with $100k machines. Now I’m really happy with my $500 printer.
... as well as the follow on course "How to make something that makes (almost) anything".
They have a good idea with the engine-driven hydraulic power pack. Except that you can buy those cheaply enough that making them isn't worth the trouble. All they're really making is the frame; the engine, pump, hoses, radiator, and controls are all purchased.
(Those guys seem to have a thing about not painting metal, so that it Looks Hand Made. Bare steel rusts. Rapidly. Paint is cheap.)
This is something that bugs me probably far more than it should. I'm really sick of seeing half-assed implementations of stuff that you can buy cheaply off the shelf. Don't people do research before starting to design things anymore?
It's pretty rare that you can build something for less than the equivalent off the shelf item. Now, if that item is missing a feature you need, that's a different story.
(And yes, I did grow up in the '80s).
The other thing about Lego is that it's a bit trickier to clone than you'd think. Most of the other 'compatible with other major systems' brands don't come apart as well as Lego does.
It seems part of the trick of Lego is to make things that are appropriately easy to take apart, as well as put together.
I wonder about the design change, with this plus-like protrusion at the top. Is it to enforce correct direction of operation when using the separator?
See for example set 10074-1.
There isn't anything magic about what lego does, other than they do it.
The US needs to go hard metric. That means metric fasteners and components. The rest of the world does not have inch tools. This hurts exports. The 95% of the population that can't use any tool beyond a screwdriver can still talk of inches and miles, but physical stuff needs to go metric. Autos, aircraft, and DoD switched decades ago. It's mainly building components that are still inch.
I want good documentation for everything in current consumer products. Good documentation makes things modular, not pre-drilling a bunch of holes in steel beam. If every printer came with a good BOM and links to datasheets, it would be much easier to reuse those parts, both for consumers and other manufacturers.
Such standardization makes it easier to design and cheaper to manufacture, all without artificially setting a standard. I hope with new "right to repair" legislation, we will start to see a bit more light shed by OEMs as to what parts their products use and datasheets for them.
Basically, Bitbeam is 3D printable, CNC millable, or lasercutable parts for making things like small robots. The geometry of the parts are compatible with Lego Technic beams.
Nice project! I particularly like your factory, that looks like a fun setup that you have.
The synthesizer world knows this well, where a $3000 modular synthesizer is required to build a patch for a $300 portable synthesizer, although you gain flexibility with the modular version.
Another solution is to reduce the baseline overhead.
For an example of what is possible: you can buy Arduino clone hardware on eBay direct from China much cheaper than anything from authorised suppliers.
Any successful "making things ourselves" community (consider Pure Data as an example) is self-supporting and doesn't expect support from manufacturers/creators. Similarly, such a community spreads awareness without marketing investment.
that doesn’t seem right... there is an abundance of electronics products priced under $50... are they loosing money on those?
The real place to make things more custom is when you can do small and stick the computer in places it would not normally go. Raspberry pi or a micro atx in the glove box of your car kind of thing.
If you're doing production work then sure, you will need that kind of optimization to stay in business.
But if instead you are looking to produce one-offs with relatively low skill and a limited amount of money to spend on tooling then I totally see the point in making things from re-usable and easy to size components.
And then there is the garbage disposal element: almost none of this is waste, even at the end of life of the original object. The same goes for Lego, all it is is parts, and parts have a life of their own (in the decades!) that is totally different from the life of the objects made from them (minutes to several years).
So the over-design and the over-thinking go towards doing that work once so that the users of the system won't need a tools budget in the 10's of thousands of dollars (welder, plasmacutter, grinder, machine shop to go with it) and still build functional equipment that is not readily available.
As for how sturdy the bed frame looks: that's mostly a function of the design of the frame, not of the parts that went into it (Ikea sells kids bedframes that look quite close to what is shown in the article), you could do a much better job if you wanted to with the same parts.
I also note a lot of 'cheating' where the system doesn't work anymore (for instance: the stays to stabilize the bed and the legs under the sled).
And the strength concern is all the holes weakening the very spindly looking frames. I'm not bored enough to do the stress calcs, but it doesn't look sturdy enough that I'd trust a kid on that bed.
170 AMP harbor freight welder -- $125
160 AMP Arc welder, amazon $199
CUT-50 Plasma $225
Pizza style air compressor, on sale HF $49 this weekend
Angle grinders - I have a bunch $39-59
Anyway I need these tools because I am constantly breaking my farm equipment. Also, instead of diddling around with things I just tack weld things, like my plow blade broke off I couldn't find the bolt so I just welded it in a few spots.
The CUT-50 and the cheap AC/DC arc welder are the best tools, but I use the MIG welder as my first go-to
I "modified" the arc welder to make small metal molds in a carbon crucible. I use aluminum, but it will melt steel. I can lathe/mill that to what I need. I also have the cheapest HF mini lathe and a nicer mill. So yeah all this stuff cost me $2000-$3000 but I use it. I also have a completely different CNC setup.
They made a kit called the Elektor set in the 1940s-50s, my dad gave me, it is the same concept as this post.
I can certainly understand that mental blindspot however given I can't help but think of enterprise software as drastically overpriced for stuff I could slap together myself.
I would use open modular hardware if it were available everywhere like plain metal stock is, but it's not so I've learned to improvise.