Talk:3D printer purchase

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Remove Sales Tax

Eric pointed out that PS:1 is an Illinois State non-profit and will not need to pay sales tax. I've removed the sales tax references in the proposal and knocked the authorization back down to $2500. Negativek (talk) 23:13, 18 November 2013 (CST)

Raised concerns

It isn't necessarily the best printer option

There are other open-source printer options that are more advanced and got better reviews from Make:'s latest 3D printer evaluation: Ultimaker and their new Ultimaker 2:

http://www.makershed.com/Ultimaker_2_3D_Printer_p/mkum3.htm

The Ultimaker was rated best open hardware, fastest and most accurate (3 categories) in Make:'s 2012 runoff, too. --Rdoeksen (talk) 23:36, 13 December 2013 (CST)

It's expensive

"Another printer with a larger build area is a great idea, but a new printer is an awful lot of bucks and I wonder how many members will actually use such a machine. You could copy the "donation model" used in the acquisition of the Bridgeport mill, which was beautifully executed. See how many members are willing to vote with their own dollars."

It isn't unpopular or too expensive

When they work, 3D printers are some of the most utilized tools, after the laser cutter (which was the most expensive tool bought by PS:One itself.) Relatively expensive tools that plenty of people want to use, but can't afford to buy for themselves are exactly what an organization like PS:One should invest in.

Different comparison

The bridgeport was purchased by PS:1. The funds raised from members are reserved for purchasing tooling and accessories. The Mill purchase vote authorized Tucker to spend as much as $4000 from PS:1's coffers acquiring a machine.--Dbever (talk) 19:42, 25 November 2013 (CST)

Fundraising Models

The Bridgeport Mill Fund-raising was one model of tool purchasing. It is not the only model. I believe it was originally done as a response to pushback on the purchase, given that large scale mill is relatively unexplored area for PS:One. I suspect the vote to purchase would have passed regardless of member pledges. Member pledges have a different set of problems, and additional complexity in organizing, gathering pledges, issuing receipts, failed fund-raising, and trust relationships. I imagine Zlatan and Tucker had to put a lot of man hours into fund-raising efforts. Their efforts are commendable, especially for trying something new, but also come with a lot of risk I would prefer the membership avoid.

Regarding the line: See how many members are willing to vote with their own dollars. That's what this is. Member's pay due's and this is a vote on how to spend those dues.

--Hef (talk) 13:14, 26 November 2013 (CST)


To me, it only really makes sense to try the fundraising model after failing to get enough people to agree to set aside funds. Hef is exactly right in that your dues are your own dollars. Since it looks like we have the funds, let us try this purchase. --Bry (talk) 13:18, 26 November 2013 (CST)

Build Our Own

"Or, since the Lulzbot we have is such a nice machine and is open source, we could make another one with a larger build area. We could even build our own Taz 2, if the files are available."

We Could, But Should We?

Yes, we could build our own Taz 2. But then instead of having a printer that's ready-to-go, we have a project in the hands of a few members that takes weeks or months to finish, and quite possibly never quite reaches the level of polish the commercial printer does. Expenditures on this scale are perfectly appropriate for a space with as many dues-paying members as we have.--Dbever (talk) 19:42, 25 November 2013 (CST)

Project versus Tool

Building our own would be a bad idea. When people ask me about buying a kit or a printer, I usually ask: Are you looking for a project or are you looking for a tool. We are definitely looking for a tool here.

--Hef (talk) 13:14, 26 November 2013 (CST)