Since the clerks at work do me a lot of favors I wanted to something nice for them. Build a desktop flower, controlled either by the computer or sensors in the flower or flower pot. For this I looked into the Teensy 2.0, costing less than $15, it is with our companies restriction on gift prices ($25).

Basically  the Teensy, is a tiny Arduino. Easy to program and wire into projects. Allowing for smart projects.


Solidoodle 3D Printers

I had high hopes for printing in 3D, maybe too high.

A few years back I purchased a MakerBot Kit, from MakerBot. Which took almost a week to build, align and get working. But it did a fair job at printing 3d objects. But we wanted better.

So I order a Solidoodle 2nd Generation printing. Much sturdier I thought, will work much better. First day the extruder broke, mostly due to a different method of loading filament than the MakerBot. My fault. I purchase parts to repair the head, and even a replacement head. IT NEVER printed a 3D model as good as the MakerBot, which is sad.

Then last year Solidoodle introduced the Press, a self leveling, unibody 3D printer. Ordered, and waiting 5 months. At first look the printer is impressive. large 8x8x8 print area, filament holder inside the case. I was excited.

Went through the calibration  test run, hopes quickly died.

Filament doesn’t adhere to the print surface at all, but it holds on to the extruder very well.. Prints one big blob of plastic.

On top of that the print bed rises to meet the extruder, when printing completed or it stopped, I fully expected the bed to lower. The print bed didn’t lower. So for big handed users like myself getting in the printer to clean the blob is difficult.

So, in no way can I recommend this printer. I’ll detract this if Solidoodle support gets back to me with fixes.


After getting the standard, set temp higher for both extruder and build plate, and spraying the build plate with hair spray. I finally got what has to be my best print ever.

IMG_0648 IMG_0646 IMG_0647


When I attempted to print a second box today, in greater detail, the extruder was clogged. I attempted to increase the temperature to the extruder, extruding 100mm of filament and retracting the filament. However all I got was a  thumping noise out of extruder head. Emailed tech support, AGAIN. And of course they are closed on weekends.