Extreme Manufacturing Coopetition

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AKA Open Source Microfactory Challenge (Coopetition)

It is well proven that contests stimulate innovation. Examples: FIRST Robotics, SkillsUSA Championships, etc.

OSE is interested in collaborative innovation.

The OSE Extreme Manufacturing Coopetition is proposed as a way to provide a public build workshop followed by a contest - in 6 simulataneous events around the country. OSE Fellows organize these events.

Basic Guidelines

  • Event runs over a weekend starting Friday after school - 3-8 pm.
  • First day involves a build of the small microfactory tools - 3D printer, laser cutter, CNC circuit mill, plastic grinder, and filament maker. Some or all of these can be built in a single day from well-defined kits. Finished machines will also be brought to the event.
  • The second and third day are design-build sessions where contestants assemble working products - aerial drones, robotic arms, cameras, microscopes, cordless drills, or other products.
  • Documenters post the information online in the form of instructionals and videos.
  • Web guy makes a product website.
  • Final product is a product that one can buy on a website. Design and code is all open source, so it serves as a public product development enterprise.
  • Each event builds upon an existing product. Development session begins with assessing the needs for development, and the team competes to make these improvements.
  • All parts are documented to allow even novices to participate.
  • Prize is live-crowdfunded via a simple crowdfund button.
  • On-demand prinable build book is part of the product.
  • All teams are encouraged to share information to make their designs better.
  • Key to success: decent quality products are made. Many different activities happen at the same time. Modules and building blocks are used. There is learning time for learning basic skills. It's a well-structured event. And prize is significant monetarily for winning team - aiming for $1k or more. Prize comes from participation fee.
  • Good contest would be 3D printing filament - designing different 3D printing filament based on various compositions of scrap plastic.


  • Amount of time it takes for printing to occur.
  • Product must be selected so that it is significant, yet easy to build.
  • This could include things like metal powders for metal 3D printing with sintering
  • Good 1-2 day events can be based on scale prototyping of machines where everyone works together, or making body panels for certain machines like the MicroTrac or LifeTrac or Car.