So, what exactly IS a RepRap?
It’s short for self-REPlicating RAPid-prototyper.
It’s an Open-Source 3D printer that is designed with an ability to print its own parts in mind(read: replicate). It is an on-going project that has garnered world-wide attention, and in its current state RepRappers around the world has been improving the design to be more efficient and cost effective. So far, about 50% of the parts can be replicated.
Of course, it can be used to print anything else, too, and is only limited by imagination. First, a 3D object file is sliced down to several layers using a software. Then, RepRap prints parts by laying down a successive layer of materials. Simple, isn’t it?
Why are we interested in partaking in this project?
Well, it was noted in previous quarter that the Foothil SEA was mostly limited not with imagination or enthusiasm, but with budgetary concerns and and supplies. Besides, we wanted something bigger and something more engineering oriented. With RepRap, we can explore the fields of Evolutionary Robotics, Fabrication and Manufacturing, Computer Aided Design and Computer Aided Engineering, or simply prints parts that can be used for future projects. It’ll be a good investment for the SEA and Foothill College community.
www.reprap.org Where it all began
http://groups.google.com/group/bay-area-reprap Bay Area RepRap group
http://forums.reprap.org/list.php?29 Bay Area RepRap forum
http://www.thingiverse.com/ RepRappable parts repository
List of Vendors
http://ultimachine.com/ The maker of RAMPS(RepRap Arduino Mega Pololu Shield) electronics based in Tennessee
http://www.mendel-parts.com/index.php Gen6 electronics and complete kit vendor based in the Netherlands
http://www.makergear.com/ A US based Complete Kit manufacturer
http://botmill.com/ Another US based Complete Kit manufacturer
http://www.emakershop.com/ RepRap community flea market/shop front
Related wiki pages
http://reprap.org/wiki/Prusa_Mendel The latest and the greatest version of RepRap, an evolution of Mendel RepRap, a child of Darwin RepRap.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3D_printing The theory behind a 3D printer
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-replicating_machine The theory behind self-replicating machines
http://blog.reprap.org/ The main RepRap blog
http://reprapbreeding.blogspot.com/ RepRapper based in University of Washington
http://repraplogphase.blogspot.com/RepRapper based in North Carolina
http://prusadjs.cz/ The man behind the Prusa Mendel based in Czech Republic
http://planet.arcol.hu/ RepRap Blog aggregator