Hi all, I am a new addict to the RepRap world having stumbled across this project only a few days before New Year 2015
However, I do have plenty of experience in automated equipment from many years maintaining, building and leading the development of automated mineral processing laboratories and their instrumentation. Currently I'm Manufacturing Manager for a small Instrument Maker in Perth WA doing everything from the hands on build to developing the manufacturing system, R&D testing and document development etc. In previous lives I've been an ISO9001 Auditor, Automation Project Manager and a Laboratory Operational Manager and have my roots as an Industrial Electrician.
Although I've done a lot of leadership work my passion is building stuff, the smaller and more complex the better. I've got good mechanical skills, electrical/electronics knowledge and can interpret/hack a fair bit of code to get what I need done. As many here would know, learning the three engineering disciplines of Mechanical, Electrical, Software is a must if you wish to develop and maintain R&D mechatronic systems. Never one to shy away from a challenge I have wilfully committed most of the cardinal sins of system engineering and suffered the consequences from it. Knowledge has been hard won and I try to share my experience where I can. I do love engineers and use them daily but personally I prefer a little dirt under my nails to a sharp pencil and calculator.
My other passion is in processes. As an INTP (MBTI) finding order, increasing efficiency and constantly learning drives me forever toward the new and challenging. As my current vocation is manufacturing, right now I'm thinking very deeply on the best way to make continuous improvement as natural and seamless as possible whilst ensuring safe pathways for the newcomer and endless options for the veteran. I was impressed with the work I saw from the Community and applaud the underlying philosophy of an open source plan to create self replication so I'm looking forward to adding value where I can.
My Current Goals
1. Build a RepRap
The hard way of course... as I said good documentation (and rev control of it) is key to engineering quality so I'm here to audit not just build!
Oh dear... we do have some problems don't we :)
Ok... so starting at the top:
I've chosen a Prusa i3 Rework as it seems to be the latest variant of a well tested design. I say seems to be because there are a lot of variations and quite a minefield of Categories to pour through and find the variations.
2. Build Another!
I'm much more interested in the machine than the printing so I intend to build another unit almost straight away. So I can have a development machine and a production system at all times.
3. Service the WA Community
There does not appear to be a lot of Supplier options in Western Australia so I will work to help out here if I can. I've joined a couple of Maker groups so will try and leverage local community to get better deals for local buyers. Open Source and Maker Groups are built on this after all and I would not be respecting all the hard work you all do if I didn't try to spread the love.
4. Do some serious development!
I've done a fair bit of Instrument R&D and find it enjoyable... frustrating but enjoyable! I'm thinking a good cost effective Breeder would be nice as this would expand our ability to develop volume.
5. Work on the Development Environment
Bringing many people together to share knowledge is the essence of a Wiki
Creating a way to allow information to stream freely is the essence of a Wiki does well and marrying this with clear pathways for people to trace and develop is challenging. We will need good standards that are easy to follow but ensure quality can be maintained else we will end up in a revision control nightmare... If we are not already there! Engineering design with a few Professionals using Document Control is hard enough. Revision control with potentially thousands of inexperienced people... on a Wiki! Oh dear, we have a problem!
Looking forward to meeting you all soon!