Ryan is such a geek. He doesn’t even try to hide it. He embraces his geekness. I don’t mind. It’s good to have a little geekiness in the family. Like when my computer isn’t working, or when the neighbor’s computer isn’t working and he calls to see if Ryan can fix it (he had two such calls this weekend).
He’s always got some project going, and since he got the lawn mower fixed (Hooray!) with minimal cost, he’s got to move on to his next project. He’s building a 3-d printer. Since we have this budget thing going on, he has been patient and bought the parts out of his discretionary money a little bit at a time, until he had this whole thing made out of wood and parts that he bought.
He also bought this plastic filament that feeds through the printer, melts, and lays down a thin layer of plastic in the form you have specified, then it goes over it layer by layer, adding height to make the THING that you are printing.
At first, he would bring me his failed or almost succeeded parts.
Finally he got most of the bugs worked out and then he started printing parts. Parts for a 3-d printer. It seems the wooden one he made was just a first draft, and he’ll be using these parts and some aluminum pieces to make the “real” version of the printer.
Kind of like making your own legos. But not really. When asked what he will use this printer for, he doesn’t really know. It could be used to make parts for things that break, to make art, to make clamps, clips, blocks, I don’t know. But it’s cool, whatever it is.
Saturday, as I was painting the kitchen green (turns out I don’t love the green and I’ll be painting it again) and it was wet outside so he couldn’t mow the lawn, Ryan was working on this printer. When these parts take four hours each to print, it’s a long process. Usually he can start it, make sure it’s going correctly, then check it every half hour or so, but he had one that the computer went to sleep halfway through the print and it ended up just goobering out plastic waiting for the instructions to come through. Darn.
But he’s had success, too, and he’s almost ready to build the NEW 3-d printer.
It’s good to have hobbies, right?