Mart is a senior at Millikan High School in Long Beach, CA. He took his first dive into the 3D printing world by working with our co-founder Aldrin Lupisan on his senior project as part of the Quest program at his school. Check out our interview with Mart to get to know him and learn more about his experience learning how to 3D print!
The transcript for this interview is available below.
How awesome are these 3D printed practical prints made by Mart himself!
Before starting your project, did you have any exposure to 3D printing?
Back during my freshman year of high school, one of my computer teachers had a 3D printers in his classroom. He taught us how to use 3D software and virtual reality coding, but I wasn’t really taught how to use slicers or anything like that.
What was it like setting up your very own printer?
I bought the Creality Ender 3 V2 and I thought it was going to be really quick at first. But since I was really excited, I was dropping a lot of things by accident. It took me a few more hours than I thought, but once I made it, I printed a calibration cube to make sure everything was working.
What excites you the most about 3D printing now that you have hands-on experience with it?
Being able to make practical prints is pretty useful. I love the idea of practical prints. I saw a video recently by 3D Printing Nerd making a little storage compartment/toolbox which is a pretty nifty thing. Having useful objects that are available at-hand to 3D print is pretty exciting too.
What materials have you been using to start your journey in 3D printing?
I didn’t go straight to PLA; I ended up using CLP U-HIPS filament. I thought that was cool. Not only is U-HIPS very study and strong, it’s also recycled. And I thought that’s a very important component especially when it came to my project because being able to use recycled material is one of my goals. I wanted to make something that was biodegradable at first but mostly being able to use recycled material was important because my research essay was about how microparticles and microplastics in the ocean affects the entire environment: animals, marine wildlife. In some ways it kind of changed because a whole lot of production of plastics is very heavy on greenhouse gases. There’s also a bunch of chemicals that make its way to the environment. So I thought using U-HIPS was very useful for this project because not only is it recycled, but it’s strong, and you don’t have to get rid of it right away.
What do you think would improve 3D printing the most and why?
A lot of 3D printing takes very long time and I think that time is valuable. It’s very difficult working under certain time constraints, like I did with my project, and possibly having one of your prints being ruined by a draft of wind could set you back a whole lot. Overhangs too could be issues but at the moment supports could be there to help that with the cost of using more material.
Why do you think 3D printing isn’t even more popular than it already is?
A lot of people could think it's difficult, a lot of people may think it's complex. 3D printing is also a heavy investment at the moment, people may not find a whole lot of use and value for what they are paying for.
What has been your favorite part about learning how to 3D print?
Being able to look up things online and use Thingiverse as inspiration for my final products is pretty cool. But I think for me mostly, I think being able to make my own products and knowing that it may not be perfect, and I can take a step further and improve it and printing the final product has no greater feeling.
We're so excited to have had the opportunity to introduce Mart to 3D printing and see him thrive in his explorations with Design-Build-Tests! A big part of Mart's interest in 3D printing comes from his interest in engineering as his future career goal, and we wish him the best of luck and hope to support him however we can!
Check out his senior presentation below to hear more about his personal experience with this project.
Got any cool projects you've been working on with our U-HIPS material? Let us know at email@example.com so we can support and highlight your experience!