Monday, September 2, 2013

What a month!

Sorry for the long duration of silence. I've just been super busy trying to put the finishing touches on all the things that went down in August. Which even now, are still incomplete.

I'm back home in Maryland and just trying to get situated before the semester begins at MICA.

So what's happened since the last post?

Ultimately, I'm printing! With MakerJuice...not hydrogels though (thought I did try!). It's still cool regardless.
Hydrogel cube! (I cheated and trimmed it to look nicer)
First print was Diagrid Bracelet by Nervous System. I scaled it down a bit, but ran into a slight snafoo there in the software. It scaled only the X/Y but kept all the Z it was a bit stretched. Layer height was 0.1mm, X/Y resolution is also 0.1mm.

So after the initial success, we had to up the ante and keep on printing. And the thought was to use resin prints to see the complex structures we could form, for which we could hope that hydrogels can also form. So we tried some vasculature forms. And it was still really awesome! Sorry no time lapses, I just couldn't sacrifice my phone for 7 hours.

I tried to up the crazy factor in terms of models, so I dug into some of the test prints I was using for the MAKE shoot out. Thanks to DizingOf for sharing his models with us during that time. What I chose to go with is "The Cube." Sadly, it failed. the issue was that the suction force created was too great for the print to stay stuck after being lifted every time. I am currently operating without a peel/tilt mechanism. I've been lucky because most of the objects up until now had very minimal surface area attachment to the bottom of the vat. So the force to remove the print from the vat was less than that of the force of the adhesion between the print and the build platform.

A lot was learned through these prints, I def need to go back and setup a tilt mechanism. I also discovered that aluminum is def the best choice so far for build platforms. Might be obvious seeing as that's what everyone else uses, but its good to figure it out on your own too.

So you might be wondering, what happened to all those tests I promised? Ultimately, they are still happening, but I just got bogged down with a lot of other things before I could get to the non-bio related things. I promise to keep up on that front.

BUT it might be a bit, August was crazy (good kinda crazy) and September is just as crazy. Open Hardware Summit is this Friday September 6th and I'll be in attendance. The following week, a friend and I are setting up a 3D scanning shop at our local comic book shop. The weekend after that is the World Maker Faire in NYC, it also happens to be my 25th birthday as well! Finally, the last week of September is the mini-Maker Faire for Silver Spring, MD. So kinda busy.
You can thank me later for helping make a future where we can print organs. :)
It's been unreal to have such an opportunity to work with so many great people this past month. It's been really eye opening and I'm excited for what lies ahead. To hold you at bay until next time, here are some glamour shots of the Nervous System Diagrid bracelet under a microscope.

100 micron layer height, 100 micron X/Y resolution 
100 micron layer height, 100 micron X/Y resolution
100 micron layer height, 100 micron X/Y resolution
100 micron layer height, 100 micron X/Y resolution
100 micron layer height, 100 micron X/Y resolution
And to end, none of this is possible without the great community I work with.  A lot of work has been done with this stuff before me and a lot of folks helped to keep me on track with their expertise. And I thank you all for providing all the things that you do. You know who you are!