today is Sep 28, 2022

Maker Spotlight: Aurora and Helios of Aurora Tech

Name:

Aurora Lung

Where are you located? 

California

What is your day job? 

Student

Website | Youtube Channel

What kinds of stuff do you make? 

We started out making videos solely on 3D printers, but gradually branched out to cover a broader range of topics including CNC machines and Fusion 360 CAD and CAM. Overall, we make product reviews, comparisons, upgrades, mods and tutorial videos.

How did you get started making stuff? 

Working with 3D printers in particular started out as just a hobby. A lot of what we know now comes from experimenting and playing around with these machines, but we also learned a great deal from other online creators when we were just starting out ourselves. After seeing how these people were creating quality and educational content that genuinely helped us and others out, we thought that it would be pretty cool if we could do the same. We first decided to begin a channel of our own in around February of 2021.

What is something that you’ve made that you’re really proud of? 

Something that we’ve made that we’re really proud of is our video on doing a DIY CoreXY linear rail upgrade on the Ender-5 Pro. A lot of work got put into that particular video, and although it wasn’t easy, the challenge only made it all the more fun.

What is next on your project list? 

We also enjoyed making our more recent videos on conveyor belt printing, as it was a very unique and cool approach to 3D printing that was slightly different from what we’d gotten used to.

what is something you’d like to work with but you haven’t yet? 

We want to make a low-cost steel structure CNC machine with a powerful spindle that can easily cut aluminumu and steel.

Wow you’re thorough. How long does it take you to produce a video from beginning to end? For product reviews, assembling the machine itself generally won’t take longer than an hour, but testing it out and such may take several days. The time for filming, editing, and scriptwriting for a typical 15-20 minute video usually takes around 20-40 hours. It takes even longer for advanced 3D printer upgrade videos, like the Ender-5 CoreXY and linear rail upgrade. Since we design everything from scratch in Fusion 360, building prototypes and testing out all the parts requires a few weeks. So, we plan 2-3 months ahead for what kind of videos we want to do, which helps us to stay organized.

How do your parents feel about this activity?

Our parents are happy to see we keep working on something we like. They have been supportive of this activity since the beginning. At first, the main kind of support that we’ve received was financial, but after our channel grew slightly bigger, we’ve been able to earn some revenue from YouTube Ads on our videos to help with providing the necessary funds.

At the depth to which you look into these machines, you’re accumulating a very deep and wide knowledge of 3D printers in the hobby/home market. What would you like to see come out? What features are you excited about?

We would like to see a real consumer grade 3D object fabricating machine that beginners with no prior experience can use. It would be very amazing to see a machine where you could simply sketch something in Fusion 360, upload the file, and the machine could take care of everything else. You wouldn’t need to know anything like bed leveling, first layer nozzle height, layer height, printing temperature, retraction speed, distance, or adding support materials. The machine can handle all these parameters just like when you use an inkjet printer. You never need to know what the distance between the nozzle and the paper is, what type of ink is used, how to mix the colors together, or what settings you need to adjust to make the printer print a nice and clean document.

Any advice for people reading this? 

The best advice that we can think of is really just to never give up. When you’re working with something like a 3D printer, things can become pretty frustrating, especially for a beginner. However, the more time you spend practicing and gaining experience, the smoother the entire process will eventually get. It’s mostly about practicing over and over again and improving over time.

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I get ridiculously excited seeing people make things. I just want to revel in the creativity I see in makers. My favorite thing in the world is sharing a maker's story. You can find me on twitter at @calebkraft

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