The Challenge of Production
First off, I want to introduce myself as the newest employee of Prevolve. Oliver decided to on board me this September 2017, turning his little one-man show into a two-man operation. I graduated very recently from the University of Washington in Seattle back in June 2017 and decided to begin my career here. I've always been a creative, self-driven type. Oliver and I work well together in that regard.
My major was for community development, but my background has covered much more: sales, marketing, hospitality, transportation, urban planning, and engineering. The last of these has been the most relevant unexpected skill I've used at Prevolve recently, as the two of us work diligently to scale up our production capabilities from four printers to 12 printers. It turns out that setting up eight new printers is a little hard, especially when we're trying to keep fixing the original four and complete 14 orders all at the same time.
Fortunately, Oliver knows a lot about 3D printing. He's been doing this kind of tinkering for about a decade. I've been soaking in as much information as I can. I'm pretty pleased with all of the 3D printing prowess I've developed, and I finally feel like I can talk about these things (somewhat) intelligently. Getting to the point where I can assemble my own machine, adjust the print settings, diagnose common fixes to our prints... it feels pretty satisfying. I love this tech.
This week, we finally got one of our new printers producing a quality shoe. It's the first quality shoe we've gotten out of these ones and it took a pretty intense modification called a Flexion assembly. So we ordered seven Flexions. (Seven Flexions will be the name of a band I start someday, I'm sure.)
The new print we made today looks SO good, it feels much more durable than our other prints, and takes less time on top of all that. Win-win-win. The fun part about 3D printing technology is that we can improve the shoe so quickly, it's almost like we have a better product each and every week.
Within two weeks, we should have our production running at full capacity. We'll be able to test out some new shoes a lot faster, so keep your eyes out for a never-before-seen model very soon!