The spray arm on Daryll Strauss’ Frigidaire dishwasher ceased to function properly one day, so rather than call in for a repair technician to come fix his ailing appliance, he decided to attempt to fix it himself. He tried ordering a replacement, but ended up receiving the wrong part; that’s when he decided to fabricate his own replacement part on a MakerBot.
Using digital calipers Daryll took accurate measurements and modeled the part in Blender. Satisfied with his design, the model was brought into ReplicatorG where g-code was generated for the MakerBot. He then headed over to his local hacker space, CrashSpace, to print out a few spares.
After a few test runs it was reported that the fix appeared to be working great and that it seems that the fabricated version could last longer than the original.
Daryll sums up his experience:
It would have been cheaper (if you include my time) and easier to call a repairman. The hardest part was dealing with Blender to make the model. Blender has a rather steep learning curve, and it took me quite a while to get a hang of it.
With all that, I learned a lot in the process. I learned how my dishwasher works, how to use Blender, how to use the MakerBot, and even something about how modern equipment is created. So while this piece cost me more in time and effort, I think I can do my next project substantially faster.