I've pre-ordered a Cupcake CNC kit from the newly opened Makerbot store. The reprap project is something I've been following for years, and I'm excited to be able to get a no-mess version of the product.
My build experiences are located here.
I've put some troubleshooting experiences here too.
This one is a "Becvan" from Ikea, and cost $100 Australian dollars. It has two legs and two fixed angle wheels, and is surprisingly sturdy.
The laptop is dedicated to the makerbot and can be VNC'd into over WiFi. This allows remote monitoring of the status, but since I can pretty much tell from anywhere in the house where the print is up to from the 'tune' the bot is making, maybe it's not such an added feature.
Adding a powerboard at the back helped neaten up the cables, and keep everything self-contained. For a bit of stability I've used some hot-melt glue to keep the makerbot and laptop power supplies from drifting around. It'll peel off nicely and won't destroy the finish.
Here are some objects I've printed. Most of them are models from Thingiverse.
Although it's very lightweight, the inside is very sturdy. The sparse infill is fantastic to see being laid down.
Unfortunately the ramparts were a little to fiddly and broke off while I was cleaning it up. This may be my fault as I ran SkeinForge on the STL file, rather than trust the GCode file jmne posted. It's possible different slice-and-dice settings in SkeinForge will give better results.
The first time I printed this the raft curled up on one of the sides. It wasn't a problem until about half-way through the print, when the extruder head hit the side of the piece and lost steps. It then started to print the watch face about 15mm off where it should. The second attempt came out pretty nicely. There was still some curling on the edges, but it's pretty good.
I'm still undecided about the best way to remove rafts from the print. Peel them off one by one, or cut the edges and leave them attached? I kind of butchered the base of this model by peeling off more than I should, so I won't show a photo of the bottom of this one.
This came out really nicely. The 2D shapes seem quite easy to print. No overhangs, corners are really clean. I'm quite happy with this.
There's a slight droop on some sections of the overhand, but I don't think it'll majorly affect accuracy.
Also, I think the holes are not quite sized correctly for the top bolts. I'll probably edit the model a little in future.