Open Source Manufacturing Tools

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Not all tools are open source, but all are meant to be used for distributed manufacturing on a decentralized scale.

There is a comprehensive directory of open hardware and product tinkering projects available via our Product Hacking list.


Contents

Open Source Tools

3D Printers

  1. RepRap - The first open source fabber, first to self-replicate
  2. Fab@Home, Fab@Home Wiki - Second open source fabber
  3. CupCake By Makerbot Industries
  4. Ultimaker

CNC Machines

  1. DIYLILCNC
  2. CNC machine v2.1 - aka "Valkyrie Reloaded"

Multi-Tools

  1. Multimachine

Under development:

  1. Lasersaur Lasercutter
  2. CubeSpawn Flexible Manufacturing System
  3. Hextatic - Open CNC machine design based on hexapod/Stewart platform structure. Under development, not yet prototyped - http://fennetic.net/machines/hextatic
  4. NIST RoboCrane - Relatively simple cable-based Stewart platform system built with T-Slot and suited to numerous very large area machine and robot applications such as extremely large scale CNC. Not intended to be open source technology, but, as a publicly funded research project, potentially readily acquired for such projects and another good example of T-Slot based tool design - http://www.isd.mel.nist.gov/projects/robocrane/


Commercial Tools

Commercial Tools: (obviously, this cannot cover all such tools. I'm focussing on a selection of the more advanced tools like that of the Fab Labs that are potentially leveraging independent production)


Multi-Tools

(reconfigurable machine tools based on modular components):

Unimat-1 - 6 in 1 modular miniature machine tool based on a T-Slot structure. The most advanced model is suited to light metals and potentially adaptable into a CNC platform. A good example of using T-Slot for the design of small tool systems. http://www.unimat-1.com/

Sign/Vinyl Cutters:

Laser Cutter/Engravers:

Hydrocutters:

Multi-Axis Milling Machines:

Sherline - Line of small adaptable table-top lathes and milling machines with CNC options. http://www.sherline.com/index.html


CNC Machines

Torchmate - Line of table-based CNC platforms based on T-Slot chassis for DIY assembly. Can employ router and plasma cutter heads. Good example of T-Slot use for large scale machine tool designs. http://www.torchmate.com/

Flat Bed Printers:

Rapid Prototyping Systems/3D Printers:

Z Corp 3D Printers - Leading line of rapid prototyping systems with full color capability - http://www.zcorp.com/

3D Scanners:

Extruders:

Design/Engineering Tools

Physical Design, CAD/Visualization, Simulation/Analysis:

SketchUp - Free basic 3D modeling package sponsored by Google. Available for Mac and PC platforms. Compatible with 3Dconnexxion space mouse devices. http://sketchup.google.com/

Blender CAD : [1]

Plumbing/Hydraulics/Pneumatics/Pneudraulics, fluid/pneumatic circuit design :

Circuit Design, PCB-CAD, SPICE, VHDL, ETL, RTL

Phonics, optics simulation:

Software, platforms, languages, editors, APIs:

(there should be a lot of Linux related links for this section)


Fabrication Technologies

(Here we have a breakdown of fabrication technologies which would be used to categorize specific links and references. I am making here the distinction here between fabrication -the creation of largely monolithic objects- and building or construction -the assembly of an artifact from parts)

Spinning/Weaving

Felting:

Spinning, hand, machine:

Spinneret Extrusion:

Looms, hand, machine, digital:

Knitting, hand, machine, digital:

Embroidery:

Tanning/Leatherworking:


Papermaking

Parchment:

Vellum:

Pulp Paper:

Synthetic:


Bookbinding

Hard Cover:

Soft Cover:


Sculpting

Hand Sculpting:

Papier Mache:

Origami:


Lithic Reduction

Knapping

Lapping:

Faceting:

Polishing:

Potterywork

Hand Forming:

Coiling:

Throwing (wheel pottery):

Jiggering (wheel lathing):


Glassmaking

Blown:

Free-Form:

Crown:

Cylinder:

Blown formed:

Lampworking:

Caneworking:

Cast:

Pressed:

Rolled:

Float Glass:

Carving/Grinding:

Wood/Stone/Crystal:

Smelting:

Machining

Breaks, Benders:

Die-Cutters:

Milling (drills, saws, grinders, sanders, routers, lathes, multi-axis milling):


CNC

Flat-Bed Routers:

Sign Cutters:

Hydrocutters:

Laser Cutters, Drills, Engravers:

Forming

Hammer Shaping/Blacksmithing:

Presses/Stampers:

Casting/Molding:

Investment Casting:

Die Casting:

Embeddment/Suspension Casting:

Compression Molding:

Thermoforming:

Vacuum Forming:

Blow-Molding:

Injection Molding:

Rotomolding:

Laminating:

Extrusion:

Surfacing:

Painting:

Etching, Relief Carving:

Tiling, Mosaic, Inlay:

Decoupage:

Lithography/Printing

Traditional:

Plate (fixed and rotary):

Photolithography:

Xerography:

Digital Xerography:

Digital Impact:

Thermal Print:

Thermojet (inkjet):

Beam (electron, ion):

Laser Engraving, 3D Engraving:

Laser Bonding:


Fabbing/Rapid Prototyping/Stereo Lithography/3D Printing

Culturing

Trained and Pleached Wood/Bamboo Structures:

(note from Eric Hunting: Culturing is a separate category. It is the fabrication of objects by using living organisms. It's one subcategory, training and pleaching, is the training of plants like trees and shrubs to form structures like the pleached gazebos and bowers in classic European gardens. Not much else in that category because we haven't gone much beyond that except in very experimental techniques for tissue-culturing of bone and culturing of marine accretion on rebar by electric current.)

Modular Building Systems

(here I've put in some descriptions from my work on the T-slot Sourcebook. This is an example of how the fabrication and engineering sections would be fleshed-out)

See Modular Building Systems for details


Non-Modular Building Systems

See Non-Modular Building Systems


Engineering

Engineering:

Chemical: Inorganic: Organic: Biochemical: Mechanical:

Hydrodynamics/Aerodynamics:

Plumbing/Sewerage:

Pneudraulics:

Electrical:

Heating/Cooling/HVAC:

Electronics/Radio:

Computers/Networking/Telecommunications:

Software:

Photonics/Optics: Fiber Optics: Lasers:

Energy

Combustion Engine Systems: Rankin Cycle Systems: Solar-Dynamic: Photovolatic: Heliostat Lighting Systems: Wind: Hydro: Marine: Geothermal: Biofuels: Cogeneration: Energy Storage/Transport: Battery: Redox: Hydrogen: Hydrides:


Biotechnology

Selective Breeding/Culturing: Cell/Tissue Culturing: Industrial Bioreactors:


Waste/Recycling

Waste To Feedstock Reduction: Design For Reuse: Upcycling: Waste To Energy Conversion:


Nanotechnology

Chemosynthesis: Protein Systems: Statistical Assembly/Sequencers/Mixer Plants: Mechanosynthesis: Desktop ATM Systems/NanoLathes: Biosynthesis:


Agricultural Techniques

Conventional:

Organic:

Container Farming:

Hydroponics:

Living Machine Systems: Air: Plant Air Purifiers: Water: Graywater Systems: Sewerage Systems: Natural Swimming Pools: Abatement Barges/Floats: CELSS (closed environment life support systems): Drip Irrigation: Flood/Drain: NFT: Aeroponics: Semi-Permeable Pressurized Grow-Structures: Curtain Systems: Raft/Trough Systems: Rotating/Moving Frame Systems:

Cold-Bed Farming:

Permaculture:

Terra Preta:

Mariculture:

Mono-Species: Pen: Tank: Containerized: Frame:

Poly-Species:

Deep Water Fed Poly-Species:

Free-Range Fish Farming:

Algaeculture: Trough: Tank: Solar Panel: Flex Tube or Curtain:

Animal Husbandry:


More Information

  1. Open Source Manufacturing Bibliography