Half the fun of making something can be to figure out how to make it.
I find it really exciting to experiment with processes, especially when they appear to be unachievable without a large factory or expensive equipment. Sometimes the sole purpose of my next project is just to try out a new process. Other times, mastering a new process can be the inspiration for the next project.
Here are a few techniques in my tool box.
Art Tools Electronics Devices Knick-nacks
CAD & CAM
I do most of my CAD and CAM work in Fusion 360 these days. It has become a such a powerful tool while still being very affordable (free for hobbyists and startups).
Parametric modeling is extremely helpful when it comes to prototyping.
Machining, Milling, Turning
Having a CNC mill in the shop opens up so many exciting possibilities and materials.
The same is true for my lathe. It is not CNC but it is still possible to make very precise parts on it.
Just takes a little more effort. I mostly machine plastics and aluminium, less often brass and steel.
Electronics are the glue that holds most of my projects together. Circuits, micro controllers, displays give projects the smarts we’ve come to expect from everything around us. Most of my projects are gadgets and very focused on electronics.
Nowadays you can find cheap boards to do almost anything very easily and it is becoming less important to be able to manufacture your own boards, however it doesn’t hurt to know how the little buggers tick. Also, most of the time I just don’t want to wait for the snail mail to arrive at my door.