Locked and Loaded
Happy Monday Everyone!
We have a great week ahead of us, so let’s keep this brief.
We Can Barely... Contain... Ourselves :)
Since the last update, production went as scheduled, and as of today, we have manufactured the entire first batch of 1000+ Tikos.
We haven’t just made them – we’ve already loaded them into a container. We have space booked aboard a freighter ship, so after dropping the container off at the port, it will ship out this Friday, November 18th. Check it out:
This first shipment is heading to Canada, and contains the printers for all Canadian backers who have filled out their shipping surveys. Being located in Canada ourselves, this is the easiest country for us to import to, giving us a gentle warm up as we begin the complex task of distributing Tikos around the world.
We aim to have this first batch delivered before Christmas, but we cannot guarantee this, as there are factors outside of our control (ie customs clearance). Tracking information will be provided on Friday.
Meanwhile we have initiated manufacturing of the next batch (destination: USA) to maintain a steady flow of production. Our first batch only took a week to make, so we're confident we can sustain a 1000-printer-per-week production rate after a brief (logistical driven) ramp up period.
Now, it’s important to remember that this first shipment isn’t a pilot or a test batch. It’s the real deal, and only the beginning. But how can we be sure?
After shipping the beta printers in July, we discovered over a dozen flaws and assembly errors that compromised the user experience. All have since been resolved, but it was a valuable lesson in QC.
You see, our QC process at the time involved a brief visual inspection and a short-but-simple print. It was (unsurprisingly) nascent and amateur for a manufacturing operation.
We discovered that many errors could have been caught or prevented through a more structured inspection. So structured our inspections we did...
Nowadays, every new Tiko is subject to a rigorous 88-point inspection, performed by trained QC personnel and logged into our printer database to assist with root-cause analysis of future warranty claims. We also perform drop-tests and torture-test-prints on random printers pulled from the line.
Furthermore, every Tiko now undergoes a more challenging QC print that contains bridges, overhangs, retraction, and other difficult features. We include this print inside every Tiko, and have set it as the demo print so that you can optimize your settings and confirm these results at home.
On that note, let’s talk about what's around the corner…
We’ve been rather quiet lately, but now that we’re shipping en-mass it’s time to reveal the many cool things we’ve hinted at for so long. We’ll get the ball rolling this week with some prints we’ve made during testing.
The above are but a tiny few examples. If you’d like to see more throughout the week, then come join us on our social media pages:
Important announcements and information will be posted on Kickstarter and/or emailed to backers first.... but social media is where the fun will be. :)
The container might be at the port, but we’re not considering it shipped until the ship has literally sailed. Therefore, we will post a KS update as soon as we receive confirmation of shipment, most likely this Friday.
In the meantime, we’ll keep the ball rolling with print photos and other little goodies. It’s only a start, though. We have a great deal of information to share over the coming weeks regarding shipment tracking, forum, warranty, user support, pre-orders, and much much more. So sign up to our social feeds and brace yourself, because things are about to get exciting!