This week, after great difficulty, we finally have our first complete 3D printed shell! This shell uses our updated design, which is much sleeker than our initial print. The walls are thinner, it has been scaled down to only what our hardware needs, and empty space has been removed by making an elliptical shape rather than a perfect cylinder.
The print quality wasn’t perfect, and it took some work with the dremel tool to get the left and right halves to actually fit together. However, the shell does an excellent job of holding the hardware neatly inside, and it all fits easily into our beach balls.
We have now outsourced our 3D shell manufacturing to a local printer via 3D Hubs. This should give us quality prints with fewer complications and a faster turnaround time than we could manage ourselves. Their machine can also handle larger prints, so we can have solid top and bottom pieces instead of having to print it in quarters that need additional securing.
We are still facing difficulties with the functionality of the balls, however. Some of the chips have gone bad, and we have ordered replacements. We currently have parts for 4 complete balls. Unfortunately, there seem to be problems with the networking with multiple balls involved and large quantities of messages being sent. The team is working to debug and resolve these issues as quickly as possible.
On the plus side, the balls look great, and our basic Virus Game works well when the balls actually do maintain their connections properly.
Saturday is CMU West’s Carnival, and we’ll be there demoing what we have. Next week, we will be focusing on preparations for Thursday’s Soft Opening and the push to Finals.