A real world problem solved with Tinkercad and a MakerBot at Maker Faire

This morning, we had a true Maker Faire moment that can only be described as magical. Just as we were opening up our booth, a maker showed up asking for our help. He had an emergency only Tinkercad and a 3D printer could apparently solve, so of course we were intrigued!

Adam explained he was missing a crucial piece to a go-kart he’d made while at a Galileo Learning camp. He had lost the nut that attaches his steering wheel to the steering column and was supposed to present his go-kart design to other makers. Yup, it was definitely an emergency!

After searching for his missing piece and going to a few booths to ask for help, Adam was referred to us. We were more than happy to oblige!

Henrik, Tinkercad’s interaction designer and now super-hero, sprung into action and helped Adam create a nut for his go-kart. We then sent the file to our handy-dandy MakerBot. The first print was a bit too large, but the second pass was a done deal. It took less than 45 minutes from beginning to end for Adam to make his missing piece. No post-modifications necessary. He was good to go!

Adam, with nut in hand, went to work on his go-kart like only a pro-maker of his calibre can.
We just stood back and watched!

Notice the calmness on Adam’s face. If this were any of us, we’d be in a total panic!

Adam’s father helped out, too! The red piece you see above is the nut that was designed on Tinkercad and printed out on our MakerBot.

Adam, we have only known you for a couple of hours, but wow. You are exactly the reason we do what we do. Thanks to you, we can share real world stories about how and why 3D design and printing is so important. We don’t have to wait for the future to do what we thought was impossible because it can all be done now!

Companies like Galileo Learning, who encourage and inspire kids like Adam through their summer programs, plus Tinkercad and a MakerBot 3D printer are a powerful trifecta in helping to educate others about the benefits of rapid 3D development and deployment. Of course, none of this would have been possible without Maker Faire and the vision of both MAKE Magazine and O’Reilly Media. Thank you!

9 comments

  1. Love this story. Thank you, Tinkercad, for being such a fantastic group of people. We were so glad to get the chance to spend time with you at Maker Faire this weekend and see how your program is changing minds about digital design and 3D printing! KEEP IT AWESOME!!

    1. Thanks, Andrew! It’s a group effort with amazing people and tech to support all aspects of this rapidly changing space from beginning to end! We are honored to be part of it all alongside the folks at MakerBot!

  2. This is super awesome!

    1. We think so, too! It doesn’t get any better :)

  3. are you guys going to share the nut design? I’m really interested to see how the thread was generated. Or did the bolt simply cut the threads into as it was installed?

    1. Hi Tanju! It was linked to in the post above, but it doesn’t stand out very well =) https://tinkercad.com/things/bVaqrywLu9h is the design. Excellent question about the threading. With the material we printed in (ABS) there was no need to thread the nut. The material is malleable enough that it was able to create its own threading as he locked it in.

  4. [...] course, we can’t forget the moment that made it all come together for us. Read more about Adam’s rescue Sunday morning when he learned that his go-kart was missing a nut. This is exactly what the Maker [...]

  5. [...] great example of restoring a car with additive manufacturing (admittedly on a smaller scale) can be found here. [...]

  6. [...] a real world example of the power and use of 3D printing, Tinkercad (@tinkercad) came to the rescue of a young Go-Kart [...]

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