MakerBots: the honey-do list killers
I had a wildly productive Saturday morning this last weekend. 1 I tore through my honey-do list as if it were made of paper. 2 For those of you unfamiliar with the concept, a honey-do list is a list of things your spouse gives you to fix, take care of, or generally address.
The way our list works is that my wife can add anything she wants to the list and I can ignore it all week long. Come the weekend, I put forward a good faith effort to resolve as many of the things on the list as I can. There’s no need to knock them all out, just make a dent. My wife likes this system because she knows whatever she puts on the list will be taken care of one day. I like this system because I know there’s a finite number of things, and I can do whichever ones I want whenever I want. We both like this system because we can see the progress being made on things that need to be done around the house.
One of the things added to my list last week was to get a new pull for our kitchen mini-blinds. The cheap plastic pull had broken or come off at some point and my wife wanted a new one. The only requirements were that it “just work” and not be ugly. No problemo.
I designed a simple cylinder with a hole in the top and knocked it out in clear PLA in 6 minutes flat. For those of you who don’t print in PLA, it tends to hold its heat and stay malleable longer. This is a mixed blessing. On the one hand, the cylinder walls were so thin that they weren’t fully cooled before the next layer was put down, making the next layer up squish the lower layer slightly. (This can be mitigated with any number of Skeinforge tricks such as the Cool or Orbit settings or using Multiply to create more than one instance at a time.) The result was a slightly twisty, sculpture-esque tower. Although the gloppiness of the molten PLA obscured the hole at the top of the cylinder, the part was still so hot that I easily widened the hole with a pair of pliers before it had a chance to cool. This made for a very easy installation. 3
I was fine with using this as a proof of concept, to make sure I had the basic design down, but my wife liked the twisty nature of the pull and that’s what we have on our kitchen mini-blinds right now. One of the coolest things about this fix is that I was able to design and fabricate a fix faster than you could yank a part off a shelf, all without leaving my house.4
Bonus real conversation:
MakerBlock: Wow, honey. You were totally right to insist I purchase a MakerBot last year!
Mrs. MakerBlock: <eye roll and grin> Yes, I’m very glad I insisted you purchase a MakerBot.
- At least, wildly productive for me. [↩]
- Which, in fact, it is. [↩]
- Step one: Untie knot in mini-blind cord. Step two: Thread new mini-blind pull onto cord. Step three: Tie knot in mini-blind cord. [↩]
- A MakerBot might not necessarily be the best fix every home repair. However, it is the best way to get me to start working on a home repair. [↩]
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