3.5 year update.

New Home Forum Updates 3.5 year update.

This topic contains 33 replies, has 11 voices, and was last updated by  Jeffeb3 1 hour, 47 minutes ago.

Viewing 30 posts - 1 through 30 (of 34 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #77469

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    First and foremost. Thank you. If you are reading this…you deserve to hear that. I had to go take a break today and just sit back and contemplate things. This is one of those moments I actually stopped to take it all in. No tears (none that you can prove), I was just in shock, these numbers are far beyond my wildest dreams.

    It was mentioned in a thread a while back I should do updates more often. You all are my support team, engineers, advisors, and cheerleaders (sometimes)! You ask for some more here is a mid year briefing for the crew. I can’t tell you how awesome things have been since the 3 year update, well, I am going to try and illustrate it.


    Thingiverse views are just about double now, 1000 to about 2000 average, sitting even a little higher for some reason.

     


    This site itself is absolutely insane. Thank goodness I spent all that time a few weeks ago optimizing. Just about 5 million pages views this past year. 77,000 sessions averaging almost 8 pages and more than 5 minutes each. That has to be 99% forums and the amazing community we have going here. FREAKINGAWESOME! That bounce rate, is so perfect it is almost fake. Everyone that comes to the site stays for a while. This does not count the Store side of the site, at all. So these numbers are just some of it. so all of you lurking and to those of you chiming in, high five from me to you.

    Things are getting ordered by the pallet now, some large air freight boxes are still needed. I have doubled my orders so many times my local suppliers are asking for longer lead times on orders.

    I am still working mostly out of my second room, and single car garage. Besides all you guys in the forums (the biggest best Crew ever!!!) I have two friends that come and help a few hours every other week or so.

    Sales wise, August was my biggest month ever…then September was considerably bigger. October was not as big, November….is absolutely shattering every record ever. Sunday 11/25/18 was my biggest single day ever by more than a 25% margin. Holy cow, holy cow. Gross sales are actually up 52% over last year, with these last 4 months making up a large portion of that.

    WOW.

    Now. It is not all roses, and I think this leads to a downside. Gross sales are up 52% but my profit is projected to be 19.3% lower than last year. Meaning I am working 1.5X harder for 20% less money. Obviously it is not much as I am doing this in a 12×11 bed room. Some of this can be attributed to more inventory on hand and more in transit but, now for the bad news. At some point here I am going to have to raise the price a tiny bit. I will comparison shop all of my items and see where I stand. I think most of you know I absolutely hate the thought of that.

    Import taxes are between 20% and 34% up 10% over last year and that is starting to trickle down the supply chain, Or I am getting closer to the sources. The e-packet was (as far as I understand) voted out and will be phased out over the next year. Good for me as I already pay full priced shipping, bad for everyone else as cheap shipping from China from small items will go away. Again. Good for the site as more will buy from here I assume, but it still sucks as I like to buy cool things and try them out. I am going to remain neutral on this topic.

    Any way. Thank you all again. Cheers. Here is to another good 6months!

    Attachments:
    6 users thanked author for this post.
    #77475

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    Oh and 2525 orders shipped, more than 650 MPCNC kits!

    #77476

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    227,000 users. That just blows my mind. I still haven’t ran into anyone that’s heard of MPCNC at a maker faire or local meetup. More than once I went to comment on an article or instagram post about MPCNC and someone already had. So it’s definitely getting out there. Great job Ryan. You’ve got a great thing here.

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #77477

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    Now for the fun stuff. \

    A new Lowrider revision was published in July.

    The burly revision, biggest in more than 2 years was released in October.

    We are now using Marlin 2.0 (current as of yesterday 11/28), lots of new features and settings. All 4 machines.

    -Added 3 menus, G92 XYZ, Home Z, Home XY. (Maybe I should use “Zero” instead of home or reference :p)

    -No easy workaround for the flashing ???’s…The “right way

    -Dual firmware’s get disable softstop menus.

    -20 minute stepper hold after activation / gcode completion.

    -Remember G0, G1, G2…. (might help with poor post processors) Can’t enable the G0 default rapids because we need a separate for the Z axis. If I enable this by default we would be working with the Z max unless otherwise specified in the gcode. Might be a good thing.

    -Junction deviation set at smoothie recommended 0.005 for CNC’s (gunna need some testing).

    -enabled S_Curve_deviation.

    -LCD timeout set to 45 seconds instead of 15.

    -CNC coordinate systems enabled.

    Heffe is absolutely crushing it with Sandify and it’s new features. New patterns, import and export features, convert Sysphus patterns both ways.

    We have V1Pi now, an easy pi image for octoprint and cnc.js. Heffe again!!!

    I helped get the Archim edits pushed into Marlin 2.0, so now anyone can use a 32 bit board easily. Started carrying Archim1’s (drv8825) in the shop. Might add Archim2 (trinamic).

    Busy 6 months. I know I am missing some things but all of that is making me smile!

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #77478

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    227,000 users. That just blows my mind.

    Yeah I am not super clear on what that number means. We have more than 8k registered forum users, 7,700+ of which are participating! That is pretty crazy to me. Seems to be an extremely high participation number/percentage.

    #77482

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    I imagine it’s unique people (or at least browsers) that visit the site. I’ve sent it to some friends and family, they would all be unique users. At least that’s what I am thinking.

    #77483

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    I must be at least 1000 of those users than….I check constantly from multiple devices, and any random computers I come across just to check how it looks.

    Small update. Today is officially the biggest day yet now…wow. Still packing orders.

    #77484

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    I heard Brook Drumm mention in his podacst a few times he had a 12 million dollar year….that is a zillion times where I am at, I could not imagine what that entails. Prusa’s blog mentions 10,000 pre-orders for the mmu? We have our 650+ cnc’s shipped!

    The small user high tech field is indeed much much larger than my brain can even imagine.

    #77492

    Kelly D
    Participant

    I only wish I hadn’t lurked so long before taking the plunge. It’s been an awful long time since I’ve been involved in a forum where I’m consciously checking in not to ask more questions but to try to give back and help those coming in behind me.

    I’m sitting here at my kitchen table running the ninth of ten v carved, end mill surfaced oddball shaped panels, listening intently to the garage while watching the MPCNC run on the little IP camera screen off to the right of the web browser window while downstairs in my office a 3d printer that I built using my MPCNC and a box of parts from you is printing off the last few components for a 3 axis CNC LASER!!!! that I’ll have built from a couple spools of PLA, a box of goodies from V1’s shop and a few metal tubes.

    I couldn’t tell you how many times today I found myself thinking “I’ve got a little factory rolling here!” as I tended to the “real job” while keeping an eye on things in the shop – vacuuming, changing bits and running the next program etc and things on the print bed.

    Very, very soon it’ll be time to start up my very own “Things I’ve made” thread here and I’m so excited.

    Thanks for being so open with everything. Everyone! I’ve been in enough circles in my life filled with people holding everything close to their chests because they don’t want to share. Not here. I said before that V1 has changed my life…..one day I’ll be sure to post a novel of a thread illustrating how/why.

    But for now it sounds like I better get a shopping cart together before the prices go up (I understand…..that’s life).

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #77558

    Bill
    Participant

    Way to go Ryan! I love the anomalies, the page spike in July when the LR2 hit and the even bigger spike in downloads for Hefty…

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #77562

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    Thanks!

    I think the biggest spike was when it hit the google news feed that day. You or Barry found it I think? I have always liked the analytics. super interesting to me.

    #77572

    BillW
    Participant

    Superb Ryan,
    I heard about the MPCNC about 18 months ago with the cost of shipping  or having the parts printed I decided to buy a 3D printer, Oh boy has it been useful, the 3d printer I mean.
    I have still not got round to making the parts that I initially wanted a CNC (cough cough – can’t say that word) machining center for, the bulk heads for a model boat, I keep getting side tracked.

    My only regret is that I couldn’t have sent you some Beer tokens for the parts.

    Bill.

    #77574

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    machining center

    I like that, good choice. Robotic Machining Center. I design RMC’s…

    My only regret is that I couldn’t have sent you some Beer tokens for the parts.

    No worries, money is not the only way to help. You have more than made up for it in the forums and I am sure you have spread the word in other ways as well. Seriously, that means more than money.

     

    #77583

    BillW
    Participant

    Thank you Ryan, being an old clot with old fashioned values it helps with the guilt.

    Bill.

    #77584

    Geoffrey
    Participant

    No worries, money is not the only way to help. You have more than made up for it in the forums and I am sure you have spread the word in other ways as well. Seriously, that means more than money.

    I know that money isn’t everything… but I start to feel guilty after only buying a few things from you and still getting free updates, support and encouragement… have you ever considered setting up a Patreon page?  I know that I could throw in a couple bucks a month, and if a few of the 7k participating users joined in, it could make up for some of that lost profit… Just an idea.

    2 users thanked author for this post.
    #77587

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    After sleeping on it it could be a miscalculation on the change to free shipping as well. I thought I hand accounted for it on all scenarios. Maybe I have not. Deep dive through the analytics in a few weeks for sure. a small error over 2500+ boxes could add up.

    Do not feel bad in any way.

    Most value to me at this point is time. You all are a tremendous part of my world. Anyone who has ever answered a troubled post has saved me a ton of time. I can not buy time (yet)… forum help and positive feedback on other sites or places, Project pictures, experiments, videos. All of it is just as important as money. If you see posts or comments in other places one of the largest draws is the positive, newbie friendly, supportive community that we have.

    I feel really odd about Patreon. Everyone here would deserve a share. Most days I feel you guys do a majority of the work. I took last Sunday off I came back to every forum post already answered. That is a special feeling, that money has nothing to do with.

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #77593

    Geoffrey
    Participant

    I understand that feeling, but remember that none of us would be here if it weren’t for you.  So I’d be glad to chip in a few bucks voluntarily, obviously no one would be expected to do so.

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #77622

    Josh
    Participant

    I’m sure enough people would chip into a Patreon account that you could at least get into a 13×12 bedroom.  I often wonder how you make any money your products seem to be a cheaper than anybody.  Isn’t Patreon more of a Tip?  I would defiantly be happy to leave a tip for your hard work every month.  Heffe could probably set one up as well!

    #77627

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    There is a donate button at the top here (for Ryan). If you feel he deserves a christmas bonus. 😀

    Thanks for saying so. I have a job already. I’ve thought about something like patreon before. Maybe if sandify or v1pi kept growing. There must be a better open source option than patreon though. They take a big cut, right?

    #77630

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    It’s odd, It wasn’t meant as a “I’m in money trouble” update more of a dang I might have made some poor business choices. I really do appreciate the offers though. I will really have to study the numbers when Xmas slows a bit. I could have simple sold way more low profit margin items. Or perhaps I am keeping better records? Really hard to say.

    Heffe a tip link would be cool for you though.

    #77631

    Cap
    Participant

    Ryan,

    First off – CONGRATS! – Really well done.  I found your site about 12 months ago shortly after I bought my first 3D printer and started to hunt for things to build…little did I know what I’d find on Thingiverse!  I’d wanted to buy a CNC machine for a while but didn’t have the money to drop for one, and wouldn’t of known how to use one if I did.  Then I found your website and it gave me the confidence that I could build one on my own and that there was an active forum community that would be there to help figure out how to use it.

    The small user high tech field is alive and well.

    Have a good one!

    Cap

    1 user thanked author for this post.
    #77632

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    The small user high tech field is alive and well.

    High five!!!

    #78425

    Lénaïc
    Participant

    These numbers are amazing !

    As for money, shipping costs are, I think, a brake for most of us who live outside the United States. I live in France (shipping from $60USD), so I decided to buy my electronic parts via Amazon / ebay only for this reason. (Do Amazon sponsored links work well ?)

    I didn’t see that tip button before, you should make it more visible 😉

    Oh, and why can’t I buy this hoodie from Teespring ? (Logo doesn’t seem similar to this one)

    #78437

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    As for money, shipping costs are, I think, a brake for most of us who live outside the United States. I live in France (shipping from $60USD), so I decided to buy my electronic parts via Amazon / ebay only for this reason. (Do Amazon sponsored links work well ?)

    I didn’t see that tip button before, you should make it more visible 😉

    Is it possible to add a tip button next to the international shipping calculator?

    #78438

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    That hoodie looks nice. Hoodies are a small addiction of mine. I wear one in the morning, and then take it off when it warms up, which is like slow conveyor belt of hoodies from my closet to my car or office.

    #78455

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    As for money, shipping costs are, I think, a brake for most of us who live outside the United States.

    The prices you are seeing are actually discounted 21% under what I actually pay, they will be going up across the board in January as well.  I have not found any other way to ship internationally, other companies are not only about 2x’s the cost but there work chain takes 3x’s as long to make a label and would not allow for simple calculations.

    The amazon links really do help, so thank you for using them.

    As for the hoodie I am not sure what you are asking. The file that those are using is exactly the same. I believe you have linked an adult and a child’s. The child’s gets scaled a bit (vector so no quality loss). Also the previews are super low resolution the real hoodie is much more detailed.

    which is like slow conveyor belt of hoodies from my closet to my car or office.

    I am very embarrassed about this as well. I am wearing one, there is one on the back of my chair, one outside the office door, in the truck, next to my bed, and some in two closets. I wish I could find some pictures of the embroidered hoodies I used to make (edit-found some), I loved them. Watching and “slicing” files for an embroidery machine was very similar to 3D printing and CNC.

    Freaking perfect two tone puff, I digitized all the files myself.

     


    Those birds though, Never got them tattooed but Wish I had.

    #78474

    Jeffeb3
    Participant

    It’s way better to have them on a hoodie. You can take them off for a job interview, and people can see them in cold weather.

    #78612

    Bill
    Participant

    Heck, you guys are a bunch of wimps… When it gets cold outside (we had our first snow of the season this morning) I just keep on wearing my Hawaiian shirts and shorts. 🙂

    #78613

    John
    Participant

    Ok,  I need a v1 engineering hat…

    #78769

    Kelly D
    Participant

    Heck, you guys are a bunch of wimps… When it gets cold outside (we had our first snow of the season this morning) I just keep on wearing my Hawaiian shirts and shorts. 🙂

    Cold? Ha! I know cold! Need a bit more than a hoodie…..

Viewing 30 posts - 1 through 30 (of 34 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.