Midwest RepRap Festival, March 20-22nd

Right now there are two emails in my inbox inviting me to 3D printer conventions. If you’re not familiar with how these cons go, here’s a quick recap: a bunch of 3D printer manufacturers set up their booths the day before, put a printer behind an acrylic enclosure, start a very complex print, and come back the next day. This printer finally completes the print sometime Sunday afternoon, a bunch of people walk by the booths, and the entire venue is filled with enough morose faces as to be comparable to one of the higher circles of hell.

The Midwest RepRap Festival is not this con. It is, to the best of my knowledge, the only 3D printing convention that isn’t a trade show. It’s a blast, it’s March 20th through the 22nd, and we’re going to be there.

This will be our second expedition to the MRRF. Last year we saw 3D printed resin molds, and a strange Core XZ printer from [Nicholas Seward], the mind that brought you the odd Reprap Wally and Simpson. The most interesting man in the universe was there with a Smoothieboard. There were talks on 3D Bioprinting by [Jordan Miller] from Rice University, and everyone ate 3D printed waffles. If you’re looking for the possibilities 3D printing offers, this is the con to go to. If you’re looking for people to sell you stuff, look elsewhere.

This event is organized by the folks at SeeMeCNC, and it will be held on their home turf of Goshen, Indiana. Yes, you will be passing Amish buggies on the way to the event. Even though the MRRF is being held in the middle of nowhere, it was absolutely shocking how many people turned up last year and how good the con was. To put this in perspective, I’m driving nine hours to MRRF, and going to Maker Faire NYC takes me four hours. If I had to choose one 3D printing event to go to, this would be the one. That’s not just because I’m told there will be a t-shirt cannon at MRRF.

The event is free and open to everybody. You can just show up, although it would be a good idea to register. You’ll see the World’s Largest 3D Printed Trash Can. Yes, I’m serious. Call Guinness.

10 thoughts on “Midwest RepRap Festival, March 20-22nd

  1. you know what would be really cool is if the Midwest Rep Rap Festival was actually occurring in the MIDWEST. I got all excited figuring maybe for once something would be happening close to me in SD….NOPE. IN is not the midwest. Anyone that lives in the midwest or even in the midmid like I do interested in having something like this?

    1. Sout’ Dakota is in da Great Plains* region, the term Midwest dates back to the 1850’s or so, when it really was the Mid-west.

      * or Northern Plains, or even Upper Midwest, but that one applies more to Wisconsin, Minnesota, the UP of Michigan.

  2. Looking forward to it. Went last year and thoroughly enjoyed it. I really liked the low-key vibe and the fact that it was dominated by people who are actually doing 3D printing. Not just people trying to sell you something. In fact it was difficult to find anyone actually selling anything.

  3. Last year was cool, there were so many different types of printers all chugging away with people (who aren’t salesdroids) that want to explain the good and bad points of each kind.

    But you really have to watch out for the horses after dark.

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