Jun 9, 2011

Ben Heck builds portable 3D printer on latest episode of element14's "The Ben Heck Show"

London – element14, the first collaborative community and electronics store for design engineers and electronics enthusiasts, and modding guru Benjamin J. Heckendorn, a.k.a. Ben Heck, build a portable 3D printer on today’s episode of “The Ben Heck Show.” Fans are invited to register at element14 for a chance to win the printer.

“This was my first attempt at building a 3D printer and I’m glad I could walk viewers through my trial and error process,” said Ben. “While the initial output wasn’t perfect, I still managed to accomplish what I set out to do in just two short weeks. That’s what the design process is all about.”

Using an array of components and tools, including an Arduino MC-Mega development board, a RepRap Arduino Mega Pololu Shield (RAMPS), a MakerBot printer, and his trusty CNC router, Ben creates a 3D printer complete with a mechanical assembly on the plastruder and dual Z axis motors that synchronize the printer arm movement. After tackling a few programming challenges, Ben prints his first 3D object.

The episode also features footage from the recent Maker Faire® Bay Area where Ben unveiled his 3D printer and answered questions from festival attendees at element14’s booth. He also joined fellow industry heavyweights, Jeri Ellsworth and Mitch Altman during the event to discuss the impact technology has had on the U.S. education system, and to serve as judge of “The Great Global Hackerspace Challenge” where teams competed to build a project that helped advanced education.

Ben also gives viewers a sneak peek at the element14 knode, an innovative engineering-focused alternative to general search engines, which enables users to quickly research, evaluate and purchase the solutions, software and services required to complete their designs. More information on the element14 knode is available at www.element14.com/knode

“It’s always fun to watch Ben tackle something new as it gives us a first-hand look at the creative process he uses to bring his ideas to fruition,” said Kevin Yapp, chief marketing officer, Premier Farnell. “Similarly, the comprehensive resources at the element14 community can help inspire and fast track the complete design process.”

Show fans are invited to join the discussion online to send Ben a challenge for a future build by registering online at element14.