The number one and number two things asked after presentation of our DIYDTG were…
“How does it hold up in the wash?”
“How did you change out the inks?”
While we’ve explained the first several times (regular ink washes out, DTG ink gets a little lighter but survives) we can hopefully answer the second with a tutorial.
We’ll ask it again, why aren’t we building our own printers? We’re building 3d printers, CNC mills, and hacking the ink cartridges on commercial printers. What does it really take to build say a 300 dpi black and white printer? Something that lets you clean and service the print head rather than throwing it out when the ink reservoir is empty?
Someone has set out to answer these question with the Openprinter project. If this interests you, join up and start the revolution. RepRap had simple beginnings and maybe it’s time to take the army of self-replicating 3D printers and use them to print parts for 2D printers that don’t drive us crazy.
Xerox has announced a breakthrough in printable circuits. They’ve developed a conductive ink called “silver bullet” that can be printed on many different types of substrate to create circuits. The key part of the new ink is its lower melting point. Plastic film substrate melts at 150 degrees Celsius but the ink is liquid when ten degrees cooler to avoid damaging the film. This begs the question: how do you then solder components to the circuit?
The benefits of printable circuitry are obvious. Aside from cheaper and easier RFID, disposable circuits like greeting cards, and fabric-based electronics, we’re hoping this will facilitate more environmentally friendly PCB fabrication. That really depends on the ink’s production process and the resilience of the resulting circuitry.
[Jen Hui Liao] created a device that guides the user into drawing a portrait of themselves. Dubbed Self-Portrait Machine, it comments on how much in society is created by machines and we are dependent on them. Unlike previous drawing robots, the user is part of the sketching process. The machine holds the users hands and uses stepper motors and servos to move them around like a LOGO turtle. Liao promises to have more details available soon. Video of the machine after the jump.
[bre] passed along this portrait drawing robot from the same people that brought you the chief cook robot. Like the previous project, the portrait drawing bot emphasizes man machine interaction. The subject sits down and is asked for the quill. The robot captures the subject’s image and runs it through several processing steps. One set is to determine the contours and another is to determine the fill. The robot then draws the the contours and fills returning to the ink pot each time it reaches a trajectory threshold. Quill drawing can be quite hard for novice illustrators, but the robot’s smooth trajectory calculations prevent drips and stains.