Time for vacation and looking ahead

I’m finally able to have enough time to take a vacation from work. This is my first real vacation in 2-1/2 years! I get to travel a fair amount with work (not that I love flying) so I’ve been able to get out of town more than my wife. So I’m taking her to a town I’ve been 4-5 times this summer — Seattle, WA. Land of not 110-degree days. Thankfully!

Between not printing last weekend and being gone the next two, it will be almost a month between my last print and next. Weird.

But… I already have plans for the next item — the results of a several week concept I’ve been working on in order to write both a blog post for work, as well as prepare a deck for trying to speak at conferences. I was going to apply to speak at the 3D printing conference in the Netherlands in October, but the timing was bad and I wasn’t sure I was going to be prepared enough. I’ll probably just get up on a soap box and espouse the virtues of home fabrication from the street corner.

I also have plans to switch to the MK7 extruder (in dual mode, of course) from MakerBot so as to use the water soluble PVA for support structures instead of the ABS; most everything I design needs support and going this route should make it easier to get cleaner prints (also due to the 1.75mm filament change). But first I have to use up all the 3mm filament I’ve got! That might also give MBI enough time to get 1.75mm PVA in stock. šŸ˜‰

I leave you with some images from a fantastic rendering plug-in for SketchUp (and almost every other 3D software package) called Indigo. I used to use Indigo when it was alpha/beta and free to the public. It is certainly worth it as a paid product if you are using it professionally; I can’t afford the licensing to only use it here or there. The 30 day trial is enough to play with and see how far it has come since I last touched it (2007?). Good stuff. I didn’t let the images render to “completion”, but the state they are in was good enough for me to see it still rocks. I also didn’t work on any of the textures to try to make it look like printed plastic; this wouldn’t be difficult, but I’m just messing around.

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