The February 28th Update: The Calm Before the Storm

Hey everyone!

For the first time in a long time, the past two weeks have been fairly quiet. It feels a bit like the calm before the storm as we prepare for shipment. Bar has been busy updating many aspects of the Assembly Guide due to the new frame design and Ring System, while I’ve been preparing for shipment by pre-packaging parts and getting supplies. We’ve got a pretty short update for you this week!

Officially (almost) Sold Out

As of today, we only have a few kits left available to go out in the March shipment. Due to the updated Ring System, we only ordered a limited number of Ring System parts in case we want to make changes to the design based on your feedback. We will sell out of the first batch very soon, and then plan to shift back over to taking preorders that will ship in June.

The final parts for our upcoming shipment are arriving in SeaTac tomorrow!

Speaking of the Ring System, the parts for this upgrade are the ones we’re waiting for before we can begin shipping the March batch. These parts will be making US landfall at SeaTac (which is the port associated with Seattle and Tacoma, Washington) tomorrow aboard the Hyundai Platinum. It should take about a week for the parts to get off the boat, through customs, and into our Portland workshop. We’re ready to start shipping as soon as they arrive.

We hired ADX Fabrication Team members to help us ship quickly and we’re excited about it!

We work with a local non-profit called Relay Resources to do the shipping and fulfillment of our spare parts and router bits.  Relay Resources works in the community to create good jobs for adults with disabilities. If you’ve put in an order for router bits or a motor from our store, it shipped from Relay Resources.

A few months ago we met with Relay to talk about what we could do to get the kits shipped as quickly as possible as soon as the parts arrived. We had a vision of working around the clock, nights and weekends to get it done, and they said no. They focus on creating a positive work environment with low stress, and that’s exactly why we believe in working with them.

We reached out to our community of other businesses which we share our shop space with and they said overwhelmingly that they would be here to help us. Having the extra help will be huge because it will let us push all the workbenches together in a line and have each person put one item into the box and then pass it down. At the end of the row we will tape and attach address labels which will be so much faster than just Bar and I packing boxes on our own. Plus, we’re really looking forward to working with these people as they are our “coworkers” so to speak - we work alongside them everyday in the ADX ANX and know we can be productive while also having some fun, and we won’t feel as bad about taking over the whole loading dock!

Software

Version 1.07 of Ground Control and the firmware are released! Version 1.07 does not add any flashy new features, but does bring a lot of behind the scenes maintenance, bug fixes, and small tweaks that will make using the machine easier.

Projects

This week was notably light on new projects, but we saw a LOT of amazing frame builds in preparation for the next batch of kits going out.

Johnny5 had a head start as a member of the last batch of kits, but he won the Project of The Week award for this incredible frame build. He says that it does a great job of controlling the dust and reduces the noise of the machine cutting significantly.

Johnny5 frame.jpg

We’re pretty blown away. You can check out more pictures of the build which show of his z-axis modifications and dust collection system in the forum thread here.


From now on we’re going to be showing off a project of the week in every newsletter. The prize is selected by the community from projects shown off in the forums. I think Johnny5 started a cool tradition by printing himself an award so maybe for next week we can whip up a trophy which the winners can cut out on the honor system, and we’ll send the winner some free router bits to encourage more creating.

Johnny5 gold star.jpg

Let us know if you’ve got any suggestions for how the project of the week should work, and don’t forget to show off your projects!

-Hannah and Bar