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Re: Trip to Lee Valley manufacturing

TomD
That is where we get that thing where we can say the American worker is the most productive in the world... Because he can push a button on a machine.

I have to say I really enjoy my 3D printer. I design a part sometimes it only takes a few minutes, then I really do just push a button, after I have the machine set up, and mine did work from the box/build. The XY dimensions are normally perfect, and the Z axis will have a little sag for height, but nothing noticeable. It really is great. Mostly they make small parts. At first I wanted, as with lathes, a larger one. But then I realized just how long it takes to print bigger parts. But the little parts are often very useful, and contribute to finish. Like I had one of those lever to tighten my easel jaw. The kind that turn a screw, but can be adjusted to any point of rotation. You find them on a lot of stuff like fences. The screws on these things come out in different lengths and they would be a hassle to adjust the length in the lathe. So I just made a little collar that fits between the wood and the hand screw, and it gives a great finished look. In the end I made a dozen or more parts for the easel, from pulleys to odd custom pieces that hold weights, or act as the jaws of the easel to hold panels in odd ways. I often got to stages where some daunting piece would need to be machined, and then I realized I could make a better looking one in a few minutes on the printer. It's great.

Eventually I designed landscape easels that were basically entirely made on the 3D printer.

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