Most DIY project authors skip what’s the minimum requirements to do the project. I give one example. The author of $30 High-Speed PCB Drill Press claims he spent only $30 for it. That’s only expenses for necessary parts at the time of construction of the machine.
To build the drill press, one needs to have a welder, grinder, basic hand tools, and safe workshop. To operate the drill press, one must have an air pump.
I’ve spent at least $1,000 to buy tools and machines for doing basic wood work. I have enough equipment to build a house but for machine construction that requires high precision process and electronic work, I will have to invest unknown amount of money whenever I find a missing tool.
Also one must consider maintenance cost of decent indoor workshop: electricity, rental fee or property tax, initial cost of workshop set up.
A quality workbench can be $500 to $600 easy. You need a desk, a chair, storage container, toolbox, lights, fire extinguisher, office stuff, fan, a desktop/laptop, printer, and internet communication. What else do I miss?
I consider whether it’s a simple tool or sophisticated machine that exceeds commercial products in the market, building something that is used everyday or for certain task is rewarding experiences. While at starter level, most projects are replication of others inventions or works. There is hardly any creativity but that’s part of learning process.
Safety will come into play later on when the interest moves to powerful or heavy duty machines especially metallic object. Entry level grinder can be dangerous. A little mistake without proper protective gears might trigger loosing one of body parts.
It is challenging experiences to become a creator of stuff. I realized there is huge difference between academic education and practical knowledge . When I look back twenty two years of my education, I could say 95% of it is useless. Public education system is slavery manufacturing factory in macro scale. I can prove it to anybody.