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Thanks Al! We do have to figure out how to actually meet one another. Mark Boyce and I met at a service station outside Pittsburgh when I brought him the Idaho Hotel.

The model is on display in the New Jersey, but not in its final position. The ship is closed until March and they were having a board meeting. Ryan put it on temporary display on an end table in the ward room. It's final spot is shown in the images. I was concerned that the end table was not a secure enough place and Ryan already knew that. The board members were impressed and surprised since they did not know I was building it.

He's also going to get pics with better image quality for me.

ITP On Display in Big J 1ITP on Display on Big J 2

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  • ITP On Display in Big J 1
  • ITP on Display on Big J 2

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times… Seems like I read that somewhere.

I finally got to First Build last night to start laser cutting the parts for the hardware store project. So that's good.

The CorelDraw file coversions to Adobe Illustrator worked well. So that's also good.

When I got there, all the stock that I was planning on using was no longer available AND they really don't expect to get any more. That's bad.

So I chose to cut the walls out of 1/8" white Plexiglass, this required spending time on my laptop changing some dimensions to accomodate the reduction from 1/4" to 1/8" stock. That could be okay

Then I started running the machine on the piece of 1/16" ply for some of the thinner parts. After over an hour of screwing around, it ended up cutting the bricks and engraving the outer cut lines. And it was horrifically slow. That was really bad!

So after spending three solid hours there, I got one totally useless part cut out of the dozens needed. That's also really bad.

So where am I?

First Build has two industrial-sized 2' X 4' laser cutters: #1 and #2. I was working on machine #1. The fellow assisting me, Jack from GE (they own First Build), said one of the machines wasn't working so well, but he wasn't sure which one. Maybe my troubles were because it was this machine that wasn't working so well.

First Build has been focusing more and more on making prototypes for GE Appliances (HQ'd here in Louisvile) and, while the Makery is still open to the public from 5 to 8 on weekdays, they are paying less attention to it than before.

I have these options open to me going forward on this project.

1. Continue to go back to First Build and keep experimenting to get the settings right and cut the parts out of Plexiglass including brick engraving.

2. Cut only the outlines out of Plexiglass and use Plastruct Brick Sheet (like I did in Nighthawks) and eliminate engraving all those bricks.

3. Go old school and cut the walls out of styrene sheet and build the structure with Plastruct brick sheet. This works, but not as cool as laser cutting.

4. Find another outisde vendor to laser cut the walls. Stepehn Miley at Rail Scale, doesn't seem so interested any longer to do custom jobs.

I have another reserved appointment on Monday night. I'll give it one more shot at First Build and then decide which option to take.

As usual, I will keep you all posted.

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330-757-3020

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