Project Spotlight: F-F-Fiddle electronic violin makes 3D printed music

The F-F-Fiddle is an FFF 3D printable electric violin. The BOM cost is roughly $250 as designed and is licensed as Creative Commons Share Alike Attribution. Modify, distribute, and sell the design, but keep your source files open and credit OpenFab PDX, LLC. We give you a sneak peak into the project and its creator, GrabCADr David Perry.

FFFiddle creator David Perry plays his open source design

What is your background?

I graduated from Cornell University in 2008 with a BS and Masters of Engineering in mechanical engineering. From there I worked at a couple engineering and design consultancies. I got into open source hardware about two years ago after reading Daniel Pink's book, Drive. Open source hardware then introduced me to a world of 3D printing, sharing, and co-creation where people were motivated not solely by a paycheck but by an intrinsic desire to create.

What are you working on at the moment?

At the moment I'm putting a lot of energy into developing a sustainable business that helps people understand the opportunities and overcome the boundaries they face in creating things with digital tools. I'm focusing on both directly providing digital design and fabrication services and also offering different types of services -- like 3D printer themed birthday parties and other youth engagement activities.

Why did you start using GrabCAD?

I stumbled on GrabCAD a while back when I needed CAD for a bicycle brake lever. I quickly saw that GrabCAD was more than an online CAD model repository. The engaged community, interesting challenges, and new tools have kept me around.

What CAD tools do you need to get things done?

I need tools that allow me to work with CAD from anywhere and let me share CAD with anyone. My clients also need easy ways to view and comment on models. Additionally, it's very important that I have a platform on which I can build community around projects like the F-F-Fiddle.

What tips would you give to your peers?

The world of work is changing, and it's changing for the better. It's important to have an open mind about how we support ourselves financially and express ourselves creatively. Every day more people have access to advanced tools and the necessary resources to learn how to use them. If there's something that you want to do, just go do it! If you aren't sure where to start, find people like myself or a multitude of others on sites like GrabCAD and ask for help.

F-F-Fiddle - David at Printer   F-F-Fiddle - R5

F-F-Fiddle - 3D Printer   F-F-Fiddle - First Print Result   

F-F-Fiddle - Ideation Phase   F-F-Fiddle - R6

What extra info should we know about your team and F-F-Fiddle?

The F-F-Fiddle started as a collaboration between friends, and I'm very excited to watch the collaborative group grow. Already there's a couple in Omaha, Nebraska working on adding LEDs to the instrument, an industrial designer in Atlanta that plans to build one and go her own direction with the design, and here in Portland, OR, we're working on implementing all of the feedback that we've received to make the instrument more affordable, more beautiful, and better to play. I initiated the project to learn how to make collaboration like this happen, and I'm thrilled by the response. I want to encourage everyone to collaborate with others on something. Not just this project, but any project! Go make something, and leverage someone else's work to do it.

Thank you, David, for offering up your project and insights! You can message David on GrabCAD to get involved or just check out the F-F-Fiddle files in their 3D glory in his projects.


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