I have a pretty strong interest in .

I have a pretty strong interest in #3dprinting. However, I’m not really close to being able to buy my own, unless I sacrifice my tax return. Which I don’t know is a super wise idea at this point.

Any advice for someone who wants to learn about it, but can’t afford to learn with some hands on experience? Blogs, forums, video resources, other? Thanks.

When the MakiBox finally ships it should be a decent option.
$200 - $300 http://makibox.com/products
You wont have to sacrifice a huge amount of cash to own one.

Another option to start could be a RepStrap http://reprap.org/wiki/RepStrap

@Colin_Faulkingham That looks pretty reasonable. Thanks!

@Son_of_Dad do you have a Hackerspace or FabLab in your area? They might have a printer you could use.

There’s always the option to attack the 3D design and modeling side of things long before you actually want to print. The 3D design process is half of the challenge of a 3D printer at least, and it’s a great skill to develop.

Try picking up SketchUp. That’s a great place to start. The greatest value of owning a printer comes out of being able to sit down and design that new part you just really want to print, so I personally consider it a requisite skill, to at least some degree.

I have two advanced engineering degrees and really don’t know why anyone is taking a strong interest in anything besides people trying to bankrupt the country. Once that happens, “goodbye” technology.

What? Sorry i don’t get it?

That’s cause you’re too damn busy looking at the world through that silly stuff on your head.

I second @Nils_Hitze comment. Look for a local hackerspace. They may offer classes and/or have a 3D printer for member use. Monthly membership fees are a fraction of the cost of buying a printer. You can learn the basics and determine whether you want to take the next step without a big investment.

@Charles_Price Thanks man, dunno what you have eaten for lunch but it’s definitely not a clown. I think the average Maker cares a LOT more about how the world is working and how to fix it than just thinking about the “technology” u are talking about. Just today had a nice chat with someone from a foundation about setting up more repair cafes in germany (where i am located) and how to support OpenSourceEcology to fix the Buy-n-throw away world we’re living in.

But sure - just give us some more populistic shit in a community post about 3d Printing. Makes you really a smart guy

@Charles_Price Technology is the great equalizer. Contributing to its advancement is more useful than masturbating about politics.

Well Thanks @Nils_Hitze @Chris_Horton and @Miles_Wilford for the constructive feedback.

I already looked for a Fablab but came up with nothing. The Midwest is pretty slow on new technology. I may just work with the software and look over my finances with a few more times. Thanks again, guys!

Have you heard of Shapeways? They basically print for you and charge a pretty decent rate

@Son_of_Dad , make sure you use some other terminology: Hackerspace, Makerspace, Community Workshop - There are hackerspaces everywhere.

I second what @Miles_Wilford suggests, and as an alternative to shapeways you could consider http://www.makexyz.com

This would support a local guy like you who took the plunge and built their own printer. Shapeways does offer the benefit of wide choice of materials though…

Oh yeah! Thanks, @ThantiK

Cool, I’ll check it out @kevin_palmer

I second @Miles_Wilford point about learning the software side. You can learn a lot about what makes these machines work well using just a computer and the software tools, that way when you get access to a machine you’ll have all sorts of cool stuff to do with it :slight_smile:

@Jason_Gullickson Yeah, I think I’m going to go that way. Thanks!