MakerBot @ Maker Faire: Kansas City

On Thursday, myself and three of my MakerBot colleagues Michael CurryTony Sherwood and Dave Neff, headed to the great midwestern metropolis that is Kansas City, Missouri, to prep for Maker Faire: Kansas City this Saturday.

Sticking to (what we were told to be) strict KC greeting traditions, we hosted a huge Oklahoma Joe’s MakerBot BBQ+Hackathon at Hammerspace last night, joined by a gathering of KC Fabricators MUG and other CCCKC & Hammerspace regulars, all itching for a chance to see a small herd of The MakerBot Replicators in action.

This town has a very special place in MakerBot’s (mechanical) heart — Michael and Tony in particular have spent a great deal of time here — and it has become over time the undisputed US midwestern Paris of the 3D printing world. Actually, it just might be the 3D printing “Paris” of anywhere in the world — take that Paris, France! — with more passionate 3D printing enthusiasts than just about anywhere you’ve heard of.

Maker Faire: Kansas City: Delights for Makers and Minions

Between the MakerBot booth and the tables of MakerBot Operators from all over the country, there will be quite a few 3D printed and 3D printing delights on hand for this “Show Me State” crowd — including sneak previews of MakerBot’s new colors of plastic, a tremendous printed Heart Gears to melt yours, a gorgeous data visualization of the Makers of Thingiverse created by Tony Buser, and Michael Curry’s robot Minion table.

What’s more, MakerBot’s Jeff and RJ have flown out to join us today and they have a handful of Replicators for visitors to purchase on-site, only the second time in history that this opportunity has been possible.

Capture Your Town: Kansas City Style (i.e. Slow-Smoked)

A “special mission” has been declared by the KC Fabricators MUG team: a call for anyone with pride in Kansas City to help capture or model a few of the many distinctive elements of the Kansas City skyline and get them up on with the tag “captured” and “kcfabricators“. The options proposed so far (that I have heard) have included the gigantic Shuttlecocks (see below) at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, the Liberty Memorial, the Power and Light Building, and (perhaps meant less sincerely?) 3D scanning the many merry locals staggering from location to location in the Power and Light “drinking district.”

I’ll be on hand all weekend to help any of you who wish to dive into capturing tools like Autodesk’s 123D Catch — and keep your eye to the Community Capture Your Town project page for information and advice. I have promised to Craig and Luis that if KC Fabricators get KC monuments and other delights up by Friday or Saturday night at 10pm, I’ll download and take a look at printing the KC landmark at the MakerBot booth during the weekend.