Desktop milling machines aren’t nearly as popular was FDM 3D printers but, it must be noted, they are far more versatile. The pieces that come out of a CNC – essentially a plotter that drags a fast-moving spindle over a material to cut out flat and raised shapes – are nearly finished and ready to use in many projects.
Other Machine Co. founder Danielle Applestone PhD has created the Othermill, a desktop milling machine that costs $3,100 and can be used to create PCBs and wooden or plastic parts. Her company has been acquired by Bre Pettis, formerly of Makerbot and current CEO of design house Bre & Co.
The company remains private under its new owner and will remain in Berkley, California.
“We started as a government funded research project. Our mission was to design small-scale manufacturing tools for the classroom and reinvent ‘Shop Class for the 21st Century.’”, said Applestone. Now the founder is bringing this vision to STEM classes she has created for girls and young women and she and the new owner are working on expanding the reach of Other Machine to new on-demand models.
“We manufacture robots that cut metal, can be operated by middle-schoolers, but output high-precision parts that professional engineers require when they are innovating at the cutting edge of hardware design,” she said.
“I believe that supporting creative explorers and empowering human potential is the most worthwile endeavor. I did this as a puppeteer, art teacher in Seattle Public, video tutorial maker for Make Magazine, and as CEO of MakerBot. As the new owner of Other Machine Co, I get to support a team that empowers humans to explore their potential and innovate,” wrote Pettis.