• Vol. 01
  • Chapter 02
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The Project

There was a time limit. Students were given a budget, notebook and the access code for the 3D printer. The only rule was not to make something designed to injure life, limb or property.

Hamish began in his first free period. A quiet young man. No one was surprised that he went straight to the library.

In the first week Hamish produced a list. Its heading -Things to borrow (ask for) and things to learn to do.

?Tesla Coil

Exercise bike

Flip chart stand


In the second week Hamish began writing computer code and another list - Things to buy

Gold leaf

Waterproof matting with heating element

Sun Lamp

In the third week Hamish continued to write code.

In the fourth week he wrote more code.

In the fifth week he started wearing a white laboratory coat whenever he wrote code.


The Project

The sixth week was half term. His parents were a little disappointed that he wouldn't holiday with them to Cannes as usual.

On the seventh week he placed a label on his notebook. ADDITIVE PRINTING - THE BEGINNING. He also wrote more code.

On the eighth week worked in the small preparation room. His laboratory coat was still looking new but had a more relaxed, lived in style of its own. He stopped writing code.

In the ninth week Hamish bought a pack of six different coloured highlighter pens. He also began to go to the gym.

Three days before the presentation he collected the things on all his lists. He also collected some basic elements; charcoal sticks, iron fillings, copper filings, dry ice, sterile water and a shallow, rectangular, Pyrex dish.

The order of the presentations were decided by lot. Hamish was on first after lunch.

Hamish spent the hour between 1 and 2 setting up in the lecture hall and giving the chap in charge of lighting some instructions.

It was a respectful audience of students and school staff.

On the flip chart was It Begins inventor H. P. Ripon. The stage was an assembly of lamps and equipment.

The main feature was a glass bath lined with the inert gold leaf on which lay semi-solid, unfired clay with inclusion of fired clay balls with metal filings on their surfaces.


The Project

Hamish said,


He started the 3D printer.

‘building blocks’

Another spotlight and Hamish flicked switch after switch. On went sun lamps.

The 3D printer stopped. Hamish removed the products. They all looked to be Meccano-like constructs.

He placed them into the dish and added dry ice.

He positioned the four small Tesla coils.

Hamish walked over to the exercise bike and began to pedal fast.

In the dish a plant like a peace lily grew.

The audience gasped as the air stung with the lightning. Hamish stopped pedalling when the coils discharged.

Hamish walked to the front of the stage

The audience began to get up.

Hamish had certainly made a beginning. Behind him something was getting a way past that point.