leoJoined: April, 08 View showroom
We asked three questions:
Where do your product ideas come from?
My wife and I have a little girl and I am a very proud and excited father. All of my product ideas I have had and made have come from necessity.
What and how do you make things?
Honestly, I had ideas but I didn't have the tools or materials to make my ideas come to life. LEGOs were about my only building tools. For the puzzles, I did a lot of thinking regarding how the pieces should fit together and what moving parts were necessary. I did a lot of scale drawings in vector based tools to determine what sizes and shapes holes should be as well as what the outside dimensions should be of the boxes themselves. Once I had that out of the way, I would figure out how to interlock the pieces to help with the “gluing” process and make the boxes structurally sound. Next I would determine how to layout the individual pieces in the Ponoko template to maximize cutting efficiency. Then I had the puzzles made by Ponoko and sent to me to assemble. I have to admit that my first two prototypes were not functional but they did have specific parts and concepts that led me to the final design.
What benefits have you gained by using Ponoko?
Where to start was one of the major frustrations. I didn't have what I needed in order to make anything so I tended to just have ideas for making something better or for gadgets. Since I didn't have what I needed, I was discouraged to the point that I didn't budget any time or money to making stuff. Without Ponoko, I would not have been able to do any of this so the fact that I have a working puzzle that I designed is all because Ponoko provided a friendly method for getting ideas out of my head and into my hands. Having a daughter, I can now think of lots of other little bits and bobs to design that would either be for her to play with or help with the general parenting. I have tried to keep things under $30 or $40 since anything more is not really justifiable at this time for me. It also keeps my wife happy if I am not spending all my time and money on Ponoko. It is just so tempting, though!