Production update: assembly!
The short story.
2018 has started at full speed! Almost all the components (like boxes, cases, hinges etc.) have finally arrived in our microfactory. We are halfway the assembly of all the frames. Due to some technical issues (read more below) we will have a few weeks’ delay with shipping, so expect your package by March or early April at the latest. Sorry for the delay, we do our very best to move things forward as much as possible, stay tuned and stay safe! Next update: mid-February.
The long (technical) story.
This week, all 280 frames have been carefully fitted with hinges and wire cores (the metal support pins in the photo below). Our working table has barely any room left for a cup of coffee. Next step is the assembly of the temples to the front, after that we will cut the lenses with a precision laser and fit them inside the frames. After a final polish by hand, they will be ready for shipment in a few weeks time. Yeah!
Mid december '17 25/01/2018
There is always a plan B.
Remember the breakdown of the calibration system of one of our 3D printers last year? This advanced printer was our only means to 3D print the text on the inside of the temples. Once the printer was repaired we reloaded it with freshly recycled 3D printing ink and ran it 24/7 to catch up with the delay. But (there is always a but), the new batch of recycled plastic did not print well this time. This is a risk with using recycled plastics: the material properties from one batch can vary slightly from the previous one. To avoid further delays, we switched strategy and ran the other 8 printers to print the remaining 280 temple pieces.
So now we had to come up with an alternative technique to print the text on the inside of the temples. After a frantic search we were lucky to find a company that could lend us (for free!) their UV printer (a special printer to print 2D text on curved surfaces). After the first test runs we found the right calibration settings that actually gave an even better result than our first option with our own 3D printer! Just last week we printed all the text on the temples. In the photo below you can see the result: on top is the temple with the original 3D printed text; the two temples underneath have the text printed with the UV printer.
New technique for printing text Hinge assembly
(Sorry for the somewhat blurry photos, Kickstarter has a strict size limit for images...)
- Total printing time so far: about 1.100 hours
- Total weight of recycled plastic in the frames: almost 10 kg.
- Manually fitted hinges and screws: almost 600 (these things are tiny!)
- Cups of coffee: a lot.
During the past months we collected a playlist with some sunny tunes on Soundcloud to play (very loud) in the microfactory. ‘Get stuff done’ grooves, this way ->
By the way: the best way to keep track of the ongoing production flow is to check out our Instagram stories (only on mobile), we try to post an update or insight on a daily basis.