I’ve got the bug…not a sickness but a desire.
It all started at Kitsap MiniMakerFaire 2011, rather innocently I think. Professor Ralph Stirling from Walla Walla University was kind enough (maybe he knew what he was doing?) to loan us a CNC engraver to exhibit at the Faire. I was intrigued by it (was that just the hint of a “cough” and “snivel”?) and so after the event I cut a deal with Ralph. Let us keep the engraver and play with it and we will come up with a catchy presentation project for him to showcase the engraver to prospective students.
Innocent enough, right? Well now I’ve got this CNC pneumonia and it seems the only antibiotic is to build a CNC in my basement. At least I have help in my time of need (it seems that the bug is catchy). There is an intrepid group of similarly affected folks, loosely called KitsapMaker. Current CNC builders include Jim Pruitt (CAD wizard), Jim McGonigle (computer support), Mark Campbell (MDF sculpter), Caleb Kimbrell (Hong Kong procurement) and myself and my two boys, Danny and Caleb. Its a diverse and capable group…just what the Doctor ordered.
We have grabbed a design (which we are modifying slightly to improve it in the true spirit of “Open source”) from www.cncroutersource.com and parts are starting to show up from all over the world. We have been learning a ton of things about wood, electronics, linear bearings and motion control (and I am sure that we will be learning more). Stay tuned for more on the build process and look (and listen) for the CNC in operation at KitsapMiniMakerFaire 2012 (www.KitsapMaker.com).