I was born an engineer and pursued engineering as a career from an early age. In high school, I was a member of ham radio Explorer Post 373 which met in the Bay View United Methodist Church, a few blocks from one of the Milwaukee Makerspace locations today. I eventually graduated from UW Milwaukee in 1981 with a degree in electrical engineering and embarked on a career that moved me to Illinois, California, Japan, and Texas. After 22 years at Motorola, Hewlett-Packard, Fujitsu Microelectronics, and Texas Instruments, corporate engineering and I had had enough of each other, and at 46 years old I decided to reinvent myself.
Six years of school followed, and in 2011, at the tender age of 52 years, I graduated from the Arizona School of Dentistry and Oral Health. In 2012 I returned to the Milwaukee area to work in a community health clinic and promptly joined the Milwaukee Makerspace. For the last five years, I have worked at Vivent Health, an organization that cares for HIV patients.
Work always interfered with my home engineering projects, and when I became a dentist, working just four days per week freed up an extra day for projects. My first project at the Makerspace was designing and building a 3D printer that was much larger than the kits that were available at the time. Over the next few years, I designed and built two more printers and managed the 3D printing area at the Makerspace.
I used the knowledge of 3D printing mechanisms and electronics, gained at the Makerspace, to design and build my first sand table, The Spice Must Flow, for display at the 2018 MakerFaire Milwaukee. There were lots of 3D-printed parts in the mechanism. After that initial success, I wanted to reduce the noise, increase speed, and build the mechanism into a piece of furniture I could use in my living room. The Arrakis sand table that can be seen at MakerFaire Milwaukee this year is the result.
You can see a blog post on Arrakis here: https://drmrehorst.blogspot.com/2021/10/arrakis-this-is-part-of-weirding-way.html
And video of Arrakis drawing patterns here:
Come see us at the MakerFaire in the Milwaukee Makerspace booth. I’ll be happy to answer questions about Arrakis, 3D printing, the Makerspace, teeth, and almost any other topic, personal or scientific.