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Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63393] Wed, 06 March 2013 23:20 UTC Go to next message
avatar UncleGuy  is currently offline UncleGuy
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I love 3D Printing - but I'm just getting started in my research. When I found Shapeways, I was really excited. But my shopping experiences -- as few as they are -- have been completely frustrating.

Maybe someone can shed light on these comments. I hope they don't come across as harsh because I really do want to understand. I hope to try learning how to design in 3D, as well -- primarily because of the inspiration derived here. For what it's worth, I'll be 60 years old soon, but I'm not a doddering old fool. Just inexperienced. Although I've worked in the graphics design field for nearly 40 years.

1) For a website that so heavily promotes the purchasing ability offered here -- and my research reveals you have one of the best websites for this -- why would you allow designs to be displayed which are offered for purchase which can then NOT be printed?

2) I read the FAQ which stipulates you only truly test the printability of items as they are selected for purchase -- but after my items were rejected you continue to list them as selectable for purchase. I would think you would then eliminate that specific material option, at the least, or would remove the offered item altogether so it doesn't waste everybody's time. Or, at the very least, notify the designer that their item has now been tagged as "Not Printable".

3) In my first experience, I ordered the Yin and Yang Koi set twice in one week.
http://www.shapeways.com/model/99539/yin-amp-yang-koi-fish-s ingle-part.html?li=productBox-search
I made a mistake in selecting the individual pieces vs. the Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 that comprise the Set. That's not Shapeways fault. The Black Koi was rejected twice -- both the stand-alone individual piece, and the Part 1 selection. There is no other option offered in Black -- so the Set concept becomes moot, null and void. Apparently, Part 2 (the White Koi) was acceptable, as was Part 3 (the Stand). Surely, I cannot be the first person who attempted to order such a great design.

I did contact the artist last night to tell him of this problem. There has been no response, yet -- and that's no biggie. But I then had to hurry to cancel the other two components because the set concept is destroyed if one piece cannot be printed.

4) I may be in the minority voice on this idea -- but shouldn't the designer be required to purchase at least one print of their own design before posting it for sale? Or maybe a Testing Fee should be assessed when they decide to offer it for sale so that Shapeways can, indeed, test it and grant Approval before bystanders like myself -- who are willing to support this industry by actually making purchases -- start playing a guessing game over whether or not any of the listed materials can be printed?

5) Finally, not wishing to be redundant, I strongly disagree with the concept of allowing a 3D Rendering to be used which does not actually show the quality of the printed object. I know I won't win this point because it's how "everything" is promoted -- from hamburgers to collectibles to online games. The end products rarely look as good as the Artist Rendering. But it took a while for me to understand that what I see at Shapeways is NOT what I might get.

I'm reminded of that old Saturday Night Live skit where the man goes into the cheese shop, but no matter what cheese he asks for --
"Sorry! That's not available!"
"But you have it listed right there! I see it in your case!"
"No. Not available!!"


"The older a man gets, the more clearly he remembers things... that never really happened."
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63398 is a reply to message #63393 ] Thu, 07 March 2013 00:54 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar stonysmith  is currently offline stonysmith
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Let me preface all of the remarks below with one thing.. I know for a fact that one of Shapeways goals is to reduce the number of rejections.

UncleGuy wrote on Wed, 06 March 2013 23:20

Why would you allow designs to be displayed which are offered for purchase which can then NOT be printed?

There are a couple of things at work here. First, Shapeways themselves doesn't test-print every model that as it is placed for sale. They do have some software that makes an attempt during upload to check the validity, but it's not in their business model to pre-print items (before someone is willing to purchase them). So, somebody must make that first purchase.
Second, there are some models that worked "okay" once, but just aren't reproducable - such as an item that keeps breaking and the production team can only get one out of four to print correctly. It was worth it for them to print ONE, but they won't work repeatedly. If I order a test print, I'm not currently told by the production staff whether it is possible to print 1000 of them.
Third, there are designers that don't have the funds to test every model. I myself have produced several models that "should" print fine, but it was something custom for a specific request, and my arrangement with the purchaser is that THEY pay for the test prints, not me.

UncleGuy wrote on Wed, 06 March 2013 23:20

notify the designer that their item has now been tagged as "Not Printable".

Interesting... this used to happen, and if it's not happening now, it may return as Shapeways refocuses the process

UncleGuy wrote on Wed, 06 March 2013 23:20

I strongly disagree with the concept of allowing a 3D Rendering to be used which does not actually show the quality of the printed object.
I'm with you on this. I would like to see a few less "renders" out there, but I have a problem here. It's a fact of life that StonyCan'tPaint, and 90% of my models are in FUD, which is crazy hard to photograph. People say they really like my designs, but I can't show "finished" work unless someone steps in and shares some photos with me.

Compare these two examples:
http://shpws.me/lmg7 <-- yes, that's an ACTUAL model painted up.. I could NEVER achieve that level of detail!
http://shpws.me/ngPG <-- again, an acutal model, but not painted.. as I said, FUD in it's raw state is VERY tough to photograph


Patience, Persistance, Politeness - the 3Ps will help us get us to Perfect Printed Products
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63401 is a reply to message #63398 ] Thu, 07 March 2013 02:04 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Roy_Stevens  is currently offline Roy_Stevens
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Tough to photograph through the protective boxes, for sure. But FUD turns a nice opaque white once cleaned, and photographs extremely well against a darker background. This thread is quite similar to another one going on at the moment where us designers are complaining that Shapeways lets us print a copy for ourselves, but once we promote it and sell it, they tell our customers that the design can't be printed. So don't blame the designers every time for this one. Most of us do our best to produce the best model possible within the Shapeways design rules, but that can be a moving target. And we aren't told who the hapless customer was that now thinks that we haven't tested the design.


Earl Grey, hot.
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63404 is a reply to message #63401 ] Thu, 07 March 2013 03:49 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar UncleGuy  is currently offline UncleGuy
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I'm not sure I'm blaming the Designers. I hope it didn't come across that way.

But let's look at the issue from a Buyers perspective. The FAQ says Shapeways doesn't test any design until someone offers to buy it. I do that. Twice on the same design -- because of a mistake I made.

Both times, the one fish gets rejected.

My first question is "Why is it still being offered the second time?" Since I offered to play along and they rejected it, one would assume there would be a notification it's not available due to some problem. Nope. Let's keep accepting purchases -- and then issuing "store credits".

Next, I'm told I need to "reach out to the Designer" to see if he can correct the problem. That places the burden of completing the purchase AND getting their problems solved on me -- the Buyer. The shmuck that liked it enough to cough up the money.

I've worked as a Purchaser in the sign industry for the past 16 years, and was a graphic designer before then. I've dealt with hundreds, if not thousands, of Vendors. I've never once had a Reseller tell me that I need to go find the guy who designed what I agreed to buy to get their problems corrected because their only job is to collect the money.

I keep threatening to write a book on how American businesses lose business. This could fill an entire chapter.

I know this is a new industry. But the concept of Best Business Practices hasn't changed a lot.

I do appreciate you taking the time to respond.


"The older a man gets, the more clearly he remembers things... that never really happened."
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63416 is a reply to message #63404 ] Thu, 07 March 2013 08:25 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar AmLachDesigns  is currently offline AmLachDesigns
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Quote:

I'm not sure I'm blaming the Designers. I hope it didn't come across that way.


It certainly did not read that way to me: I thought you made your case well that you thought the 'system' was at fault.


Quote:

My first question is "Why is it still being offered the second time?" Since I offered to play along and they rejected it, one would assume there would be a notification it's not available due to some problem. Nope. Let's keep accepting purchases -- and then issuing "store credits".


I agree with this point: why, once a design has been attempted to print and adjudged to have failed, is it not withdrawn from sale with all the associated notifications to the designer? This is only logical and correct.

Of course this would then tie in with all the other threads about WHY designs are printing once or twice and then being rejected, or why they are failing in the first instance, but the principal is sound, if it fails to print do not offer it for sale. Perhaps it would give a focus to these production issues if everyone knew that a failure to print means a 'Not Currently Printable' flag in the shop.


Quote:

Next, I'm told I need to "reach out to the Designer" to see if he can correct the problem. That places the burden of completing the purchase AND getting their problems solved on me -- the Buyer. The schmuck that liked it enough to cough up the money.


This is an unresolved part of the Shapeways set up, and I know different people have different views on this. The question is, when a model is sold to someone who is not the designer who is that purchaser buying the item from? It seems to me that the purchaser is buying the item from Shapeways (who deal with every part of the fulfilment of the order) and paying a license fee (the mark-up) to the designer. Others have expressed on the contrary that they, the designer, are selling to the client and that SW are just a conduit.

Unless the model has been commissioned by the purchaser or there has been some side communication between them and the designer (pm or email etc) this request to contact the designer seems to be a step designed to alienate (prospective) customers. SW is providing the shop, printing the product, shipping it and collecting payment: once a problem occurs the answer should be 'we're really sorry, let us take care of it'. And then behind the scenes SW should contact the designer etc. SW is good with Customer Service for designers - they need to think more about Customer Service to customers..


Quote:

But let's look at the issue from a Buyers perspective.


Someone on another thread said that SW was too focused on 'Makers' and this seems correct to me. For creating models it all works pretty well and I'm thrilled to have SW available to me. BUT the shops and search I feel should move towards being more customer-centric, catering to someone who while browsing the web falls upon the SW site and sees something they like and want to buy. They may not have heard of 3d printing. Maybe they have and they don't care, they just want to buy something. What experience do they have when they come to the site? When they buy something (or try to buy something)? When they try to find other things?

A trivial example is silver objects. I think the silver process is fantastic, the results are great and the price is very competitive with shop-bought items, especially considering that SW models are not mass-produced. The products produced should stack up against anything produced anywhere else very favourably. However, if as a casual customer I have the choice of buying jewellery (spending potentially several hundred dollars or euros) for someone from a shop where I will get a gift box, a chain or earring hooks if appropriate and some kind of indication of the silver nature of the product (hallmark, .925, certificate etc) or a similar product without all of the extras in an (admittedly stylish!) black cardboard tube, which is the better buying experience?



Shapeways is incredible and I am a huge fan, but I think they need to consider their processes and procedures more carefully and also address the question of how they wish to position themselves vis-a-vis the designers and the customers. And decide who their customers are.

Cheers!!!
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63525 is a reply to message #63416 ] Fri, 08 March 2013 04:05 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Roy_Stevens  is currently offline Roy_Stevens
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I agree with the assessment that Shapeways doesn't seem to be able to figure out who its customers are. For instance, I received an email today touting their new API for creating 3D items. I'm not certain why we need a half-baked API while Google and Autodesk give away great software. Sure, it's a great thought to bring 3D printing to the masses, but lets not put the cart before the horse.


Earl Grey, hot.
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63539 is a reply to message #63525 ] Fri, 08 March 2013 07:51 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar AmLachDesigns  is currently offline AmLachDesigns
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Quote:

For instance, I received an email today touting their new API for creating 3D items. I'm not certain why we need a half-baked API while Google and Autodesk give away great software. Sure, it's a great thought to bring 3D printing to the masses, but lets not put the cart before the horse.


I have no experience of the API - a bit advanced for me - but I have no reason to believe it is half-baked.

Re the Google and Autodesk, surely you are not comparing like with like: they are 3d design packages and Shapeways provides a 3d printing service. It is great to bring 3d printing to the masses': I don't really understand your point here.


Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63563 is a reply to message #63539 ] Fri, 08 March 2013 15:12 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar stonysmith  is currently offline stonysmith
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@AmLachDesigns is correct.. the Shapeways API is not for designing new models, but rather for automating the process of getting new models into your shop, and providing a method for external websites to add items directly to the Shapeways cart. Google and Autodesk APIs could not help you with either of those tasks.

Plus, just because one team is spending time on the API, that doesn't mean that another team is not working hard on reducing rejections. They're not related tasks.


Patience, Persistance, Politeness - the 3Ps will help us get us to Perfect Printed Products
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63597 is a reply to message #63563 ] Fri, 08 March 2013 19:30 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Roy_Stevens  is currently offline Roy_Stevens
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My point is that there are obvious and long-standing deficiencies in the way Shapeways is handling the designer/customer interaction, yet it seems, at least from this side of the fence, like the resources are allocated elsewhere.


Earl Grey, hot.
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63622 is a reply to message #63597 ] Fri, 08 March 2013 23:44 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar UncleGuy  is currently offline UncleGuy
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Okay. Thanks for all the great input from everyone. At least this forum garners participation!

The final irony was that I asked for a full refund instead of Store Credit.
This gives me time to re-evaluate whether I want to buy from Shapeways any longer.
Still no response from the Designer who was contacted to try and resolve the printing problem -- I wonder, now, if I would even be notified.

Then I receive my notice that my refund was finalized through Paypal.
And they hit me with a $4 fee!
Laughing

You gotta love it!

Add THAT to my List of Frustrations.

How about this...
Why doesn't Shapeways WAIT until they've tested the design before taking my payment?
It would be easy enough to state: "Once the design passes testing for printability, your payment will be assessed and your order will be processed."

It eliminates all the fuss.
Such a concept!!


"The older a man gets, the more clearly he remembers things... that never really happened."
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63623 is a reply to message #63622 ] Fri, 08 March 2013 23:56 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar UncleGuy  is currently offline UncleGuy
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I had another Frustration pop in my head today.

Why doesn't Shapeways have a counter for each design that indicates how many times it was successfully printed?

0 means "You're the Guinea Pig!!" Shocked
10 means "It's probably safe to order." Confused
45 means "It's definitely safe to order." Razz
1,278 means "It's not only safe to order -- but it's really popular!" Surprised
12,769 means "Why are you taking so long to make a decision?!" Rolling Eyes
562,372 means "Yes. It's yet another iPhone skin!!!" Very Happy


"The older a man gets, the more clearly he remembers things... that never really happened."
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63625 is a reply to message #63623 ] Sat, 09 March 2013 00:40 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Roy_Stevens  is currently offline Roy_Stevens
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Your 'times ordered' is a good idea, but flawed. I had one design ordered over 120 times, and then Shapeways rejected it, and wouldn't print it again until I changed it. But at least because it had been popular I was able to get someone to tell me what they wanted from me to prevent future rejections.


Earl Grey, hot.
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63626 is a reply to message #63625 ] Sat, 09 March 2013 00:53 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar UncleGuy  is currently offline UncleGuy
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Uh, I didn't say "times ordered".
I think I said "successfully printed".

I don't care how popular it is, or how many stars it gets, or how many "likes" it gets.
I care about whether it can be successfully printed.
Without being the Guinea Pig every time.


"The older a man gets, the more clearly he remembers things... that never really happened."
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63631 is a reply to message #63626 ] Sat, 09 March 2013 02:19 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Roy_Stevens  is currently offline Roy_Stevens
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By ordered I meant, ordered, printed, and shipped. Sorry for the confusion.


Earl Grey, hot.
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63641 is a reply to message #63626 ] Sat, 09 March 2013 03:50 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar stonysmith  is currently offline stonysmith
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Well.. to be complete.. they need to also include the number of times they ATTEMPTED to print it and it failed because it's a marginal model. (and yes, I'm speaking of my OWN creations)


Patience, Persistance, Politeness - the 3Ps will help us get us to Perfect Printed Products
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63769 is a reply to message #63641 ] Mon, 11 March 2013 01:25 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar dgr2  is currently offline dgr2
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I have a question that isn't quite related but is somehow. And the problem frustrates me.

How do you delete previous versions of the model files you have uploaded that didn't work and clutter up the file history? When you know the file that was uploaded was wrong, and you changed it pretty soon after, and the item was never for sale and was never downloaded (because you looked at the generated image and knew staight away that it was cr*p), why can't we have the option to delete it? I don't want version V74, I want the ones that are relevant.

If there is any information on this, just point me to it.

David


dgr2
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63940 is a reply to message #63769 ] Tue, 12 March 2013 22:39 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar 7777773  is currently offline 7777773
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I'm not seeing the delete button any more - maybe it was mistakenly removed? It most recently was on the models list as a highlight icon over the picture, but that isn't showing up for me.

***EDIT*** Nevermind, it's right there. Click the X on your model's picture when you're looking at the My Models page.

[Updated on: Tue, 12 March 2013 22:43 UTC]

Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #63948 is a reply to message #63940 ] Wed, 13 March 2013 01:24 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar dgr2  is currently offline dgr2
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No, you missunderstood. I don't want to delete the model, I want to delete the history of useless model uploads from the list of previous attempts to get it right. Yes, I know deleting the model and then re creating it new would do that, but some of the upload history is relevant, and I would lose that too. I want to pick and choose which previous upload file references to delete.

Fussy, aren't I?


dgr2
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66064 is a reply to message #63393 ] Fri, 12 April 2013 13:14 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Brack  is currently offline Brack
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As a designer, I have had models successfully print over 20 times, then suddenly shapewyas tells a customer they are unprintable, with no flexibility on that. There recently seems to have been some unannounced changes in the rules for what shapeways will accept in FUD - My models are well within the nuanced design rules, indeed I have one new model which has copied and pasted detail parts from another model which is currently in production with no issues, but shapeways reject the new file again and again. It seems they're trying to get out of offering anything slightly detailed, but haven't told the designers of these unnanounced rule changes. Currently I'm looking around for other 3D printers, which is a shame, as all I want is the service and level of detail that I got from shapeways last year.

The shop model and ability to market to customers and receive a royalty payment is the best aspect of shapeways, but if the customer service to designers and customers is poor, and the level of detail offered is reducing year on year then Shapeways will lose the loyal customer base they have. Such a shame, as the business model of offerign shops is streets ahead of many of the competitors.


http://www.shapeways.com/shops/brack
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66188 is a reply to message #66064 ] Tue, 16 April 2013 12:49 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Dragoman  is currently offline Dragoman
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I have had the same problem with thin FUD pieces.

Items designed according to the design tips on the materials page get rejected. In discussion with the service team they have agreed that, indeed, the model was following the rules. Checking with the producer, they got the answer that the thin pieces were too likely to break in cleaning or shipping.

I asked whether they would revise the design tips so as not to mislead designers, but they wouldn't make any promises about that Sad

For the moment, we should follow the design specifications at the top of the page, but not the detailed tips.

Though this still leaves some questions. "Walls" can be thinner than "Wires". But when is a small item with an oblong cross-section a wall and when is it a wire?

Greetings
Dragoman


Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66204 is a reply to message #63393 ] Tue, 16 April 2013 15:13 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar aeron203  is currently offline aeron203
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Just to chime in here:
I just had a co-creator order rejected. The product has been available for 3 years and has sold dozens of copies. With a co-creator product, each model is different, so I understand why it has to be inspected each time, and a "has been printed" flag wouldn't help me. There are very subtle rule and measurement changes happening that might apparently invalidate my whole portfolio of products. I now either have the choice of going through and editing my models to have enough margin that they won't be rejected, or I can keep fulfilling orders that are then rejected. Neither solution works for me. Re-working all my products would take a lot of effort, but not re-working my products means that I keep doing all this work customizing, but then the model gets cancelled and I don't get paid! Under this policy, I get nothing, Shapeways gets nothing, and the paying customer gets nothing. That is no way to do business. I request that instead of a cancellation notice, that the designer gets a pending cancellation notice, with 24 hours to make the changes. I will not go through and edit all my models every time production and quality control rules change.






Aaron - 40westdesigns.com/blog
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66208 is a reply to message #66204 ] Tue, 16 April 2013 16:20 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar AmLachDesigns  is currently offline AmLachDesigns
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This thread is basically similar to this one Preventing Rejections.

From both, it seem clear to me that SW have altered the way they operate and their policy on rejections. This does not surprise me as the attitude before seemed perhaps a bit too flexible (I know some will disagree here) and did not relate that closely to the design rules. Perhaps the cost of refunds/credits for misprints was becoming too high.

What does surprise me is that no announcement was made that they were tightening up in this way, which would have just been good policy, I think. I have also noticed that apart from YouKnowWho4Eva being his usual helpful self there has been no input/replies from SW on either of these threads, and certainly none in an official capacity.

What's up?
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66214 is a reply to message #66208 ] Tue, 16 April 2013 17:42 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Roy_Stevens  is currently offline Roy_Stevens
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1) ... offered for purchase which can then NOT be printed?

There is an initial automated check. That used to be enough.

2) ... continue to list them as selectable for purchase. ...notify the designer that their item has now been tagged as "Not Printable".

This used to be the case, but the code seems to be a bit random now. And in fact I've had some designs completely dropped from the 'My Models' page which is supposed to list everything, not just those that are printable.

3) (multiple pieces)

I've asked Shapeways to automatically cancel all items of an order that has a rejected item due to this issue, and I've asked my customers to do the same. If they continue to reject things willie-nillie maybe once they stop getting orders they will fix the problem.

4) ... shouldn't the designer be required to purchase at least one print of their own design before posting it for sale?

I agree - for the most part. Sometimes a design is a variant of an existing design. But the problem is that even if the designer gets it printed doesn't mean that his customers will be so lucky. I've had numous items rejected that have a nice finished photo of the item on the page.


Earl Grey, hot.
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66223 is a reply to message #66208 ] Tue, 16 April 2013 20:32 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar mkroeker  is currently offline mkroeker
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I suspect it might be simply collateral damage from the recent aggressive growth, rather than a change in company policy -
which would explain why there is/was no official announcement of any changes to the rules.
At least at the NY site, there are now lots of new printers to calibrate, and many new, certainly motivated but unavoidably
inexperienced workers doing the checking, printing and cleaning of our orders. Perhaps the young ones balk at walls and
wires that never bothered the old dutch masters ?
Another possibilty would be that the elusive "has been printed" flag was actually implemented somehow in the old software
system, mitigating operator bias, and then lost during the great transition to InShape 2.0.
In either case, damage control may still be going on, with nobody confident to explain the still changing situation in the kind
of marketing-speak expected from a successful startup. Confused
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66231 is a reply to message #66223 ] Wed, 17 April 2013 00:48 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar stonysmith  is currently offline stonysmith
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I just love your term "the old dutch masters" - that's priceless.

You have to understand that in the case of the Eindhoven facility, the production team(s) are largely sub-contractors. So the "vendor" could have tightened up on the rules without Shapeways being notified. I can't speak for the NYC facility - that may well be due to inexperienced operators. I know that these mystery rejects are just as frustrating to Shapeways... it hurts their bottom line (in lost labor) as much or more than it hurts my pocket.

The recent rash of rejects started significantly after InShape 2 was made public. This is some new problem.

As to the "Printed Before" flag, I am still a major proponent of such a flag. It is possible to query the database of purchases and see that some model has printed XX times, but that doesn't provide a "handshake" between the designer and the production team. For some reason, the production team is still re-checking each model (effectively by hand) and that seems to me to be an bit of labor that they shouldn't have to do.

====
As to the subject of "force the designer to buy a copy", please, !no!... I have many models in my shop that are bespoke models. I have carefully crafted the items so as to try to maximize detail but stay within the design rules. (okay, i'll admit, bend them where I can Smile ) Rather than charging some hourly rate for custom design services, my buyers are aware that they get a cheaper price overall by allowing me to sell the item to the open public, and along with that goes a (small) amount of risk that some item might get rejected. It's part of the whole risk/reward/price formula that has worked well for me so far.

As to publishing photos of the finished items ... the trouble is .... StonyCan'tPaint Smile and photographing raw FUD is next to impossible. Every time that I can, I ask my buyers to send me photos of the items after they finish painting them, but you can see that this doesn't happen very often.


Patience, Persistance, Politeness - the 3Ps will help us get us to Perfect Printed Products
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66238 is a reply to message #66231 ] Wed, 17 April 2013 03:47 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Roy_Stevens  is currently offline Roy_Stevens
Messages: 143
Registered: November 2009
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The 'vendors' can't change the rules. I talked with one such today, and if you think the NDA for Apple is rough, the Shapeways NDA and legal agreement is worse. I think the biggest problem recently is with the excessive use of Netfab, which is notoriously buggy. They recently rejected one of my models for a wire being too thin and sent me a netfab grab showing it, with the measurement to some arbitrary place in the center of the wire. Solidworks came up with a much different result for the thickness of that feature.


Earl Grey, hot.
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66245 is a reply to message #66238 ] Wed, 17 April 2013 07:54 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Dragoman  is currently offline Dragoman
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Roy_Stevens wrote on Wed, 17 April 2013 03:47

I think the biggest problem recently is with the excessive use of Netfab, which is notoriously buggy. They recently rejected one of my models for a wire being too thin and sent me a netfab grab showing it, with the measurement to some arbitrary place in the center of the wire.


This can't be the only reason. The thin pieces in my rejections were properly measured.

Greetings
Dragoman
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66509 is a reply to message #66231 ] Sat, 20 April 2013 11:45 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar dcyale  is currently offline dcyale
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Registered: February 2013
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>"Stony Can't Paint".......

I hear you brother! Even with the optivisor with the LEDs on my head my paintied models are only so-so. Any the photos always seem to show some place my hand wasn't as steady as I thought with the paint brush.

As for photgraphing FUD I have started using no flassh and a strong sidelight. I think it helps.

As for this thread- It seems that sometimes SW will print my model, but when a customer tries it gets rejected. That is a potential customer unlikely to come back and it's agrevating. I'm not trying to make a living with my models, only trying to get some of the cost of things I make for myself back, but this type of thing makes it impossible.
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66514 is a reply to message #66509 ] Sat, 20 April 2013 13:39 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar UncleGuy  is currently offline UncleGuy
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Registered: August 2012
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And the biggest point I want to make is this...
I'm just a fan.

My decision to purchase at Shapeways was based purely on a desire to share, in some way, in this evolving technology. Let me correct that -- to ATTEMPT to purchase at Shapeways -- which hasn't been successful, yet.

I think this new technology is really great! But I'm not a 3D designer, nor an artist, nor a sculptor or engineer. I stumbled upon a few articles on 3D printing -- couldn't believe what I was reading, and became an instant fan eager to do more research.

I've been the only proponent of its potential amongst my family, friends and co-workers for nearly two years now. So much so, that I've become "That crazy 3D Printing Evangelist!" with them -- "Shut up, already! None of it's true, Guy. You're just playing practical jokes on us."

On a recent business trip to Vegas this came full circle. I spent several moments at breakfast and dinner speaking about 3D printing to my employer and suggesting how our company could benefit from it -- only to be gently corrected by both him and a nearby designer who does a lot of work for us twith comments like: "No, Guy. You must be mistaken. They really cannot print in metal or ceramic. Not really. They cannot print anything fully-assembled, as you claim. Those gear sets you are talking about were ASSEMBLED by someone. It's all a bunch of malarkey!"

And now I find myself a few weeks later with my e-ticket in hand to take the train to New York for the 3D Printing Conference and Expo.

So, the really frustrating thing for me with my first experiences with Shapeways is that my inability to purchase the items depicted there only feeds the fire of the non-believers.

Maybe it really is "all a bunch of malarkey"!


"The older a man gets, the more clearly he remembers things... that never really happened."
Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66651 is a reply to message #66514 ] Mon, 22 April 2013 17:59 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar MikeP  is currently offline MikeP
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Speaking of rejects;

Here's an absolute deal breaker for me with shapeways when printing a model with multiple parts.

I have had an order with multiple parts be accepted for printing then part of the order is later rejected and part printed with no opportunity for me to cancel the remaining order.

Which means an added $6.50 postage. I've had this happen twice and had to pay over $19 for postage that should have cost $6.50


Re: Things That Frustrate Me About Shapeways [message #66672 is a reply to message #66651 ] Tue, 23 April 2013 00:23 UTC Go to previous message
avatar Roy_Stevens  is currently offline Roy_Stevens
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This situation is not uncommon. I have always insisted that they refund my postage, and they always have. Despite Shapeways constantly moving and random rules and rejections I have nothing but praise for their customer service. I designed some L-girder 'wires' with the two legs well within the current (as of 4/22) rules for FUD wires which have been successfully printed dozens of times, but now they want to measure to some arbitrary point within the feature and call them unsuitable. Note the two sides are of identical thickness yet one of them measured different.
index.php?t=getfile&id=31010&private=0

  • Attachment: WireL.JPG
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Earl Grey, hot.

 
   
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