Hello everyone. I’m Chris Fornof, the newest member of Factor e Farm.

We’ve been busy with the May production run. I’m writing to you from inside the Cordwood Hut. The day is young, but there’s so much amazing stuff going down here, that I needed to blog some of it. A lot of you may be wondering “What is life like at Factor E Farm?”

Well, here was my first 4 days.

Day 1:

  • Designed the conceptual plan of a CEB housing unit for 8 people.

  • Fabbed tractor parts.
Day 2:
  • Drilled holes in Lifetrac beams with annular cutters on a magnetic drill – a very useful device, and soon to be open-sourced.

  • Learned to cut Rebar

  • Planned out the month Calendar (on Google Calendar, likely public soon)

Day 3:

  • Prototyped a Rebar Cutting machine.
    • (Decreased cut time from 10 minutes to 10 seconds, 6000% improvement!)
  • Sketched a design for a materials handling production line.

  • Sketched CAD of Powercube III (will clean up later)
Day 4:

  • Cutting frenzy!

I could rant on and on about how amazing this place is. How moving out here to work is one of the most satisfying things I’ve ever done. I could write about the epic-ness of everything that is happening here. The projects, the people, the contacts, the inspiration, the vision, the hope that of what this project represents. But you really have to see it for yourself.

This project is at a weird inflexion point, it’s reached critical mass and is now starting to just explode. So much is happening right now its hard to keep track of. TED really did give us that final jumpstart, everything around us is coming online.

We’re about to take off.

Join us!

Become a True Fan! Come by for a visit! Better yet, help us build something!

Seriously though, our True Fans are greatly appreciated. They are our champions. The people that truly help us build a better world. Through the power of Open Hardware, GVCS development is being carried out in, garages, basements, workshops, and fab labs across the country. From this little farm in the middle of nowhere, we’re coordinating research and prototyping projects across the country. For the price of scrap metal, we’ve built assembly lines, heavy machinery, workshops, and housing from scratch.

Orders for CEB Liberators and LifeTrac Tractors are piling up. There are talks of governments funding fab shop creation in villages half-way across the world. We’re having to fend off media so we can focus on getting some work done. New batches of talented engineers, architects, machinists, and designers are arriving every month. All armed with crazy skills and united in a vision to build a better world (and some fairly freaking awesome tools and buildings as well!)

Something mindblowing is going on down here. If you’re able to come, I’d highly recommend it..

So with that, I’ll go ahead and wrap, Time to get to WORK!

By this afternoon, we should have all the pieces cut, machined, torched, and printed. All nice and ready to assemble and weld for a production run of 3 LifeTrac tractors and 4 CEB presses, 1 Pulverizer, and 5 Power Cubes. The assembly line is coming online!

This is gonna be fun.


EDIT: This post was delayed a few days, much awesomeness has transpired since. Expect more updates soon!


  1. LucasG

    One True Fan speaking here.

    Thanks for the show, glad we can help from the distances.

    How many people on the farm right now? How many expected through the Summer? Show the place around with simple video, a la Vinay/Akvo/Everyone-else?

    Again, thanks.

    1. Marcin

      5 people here now, expecting to build up to 8-12 full-time on-site people by end of the year.

  2. Devin

    This is an amazing post. Please read this post into a camera and add a few pictures (the ones included in this post are awesome). Then we’ll have a great fundraising video.

    Very excited to come out to the farm in September.

    Keep up the great work! People around the world are relying on OSE to create the tools they need to make the things they want.

    1. Marcin

      We’ve got gigs upon gigs of footage, we just need to find the time to annotate and upload for distributed video editing.

  3. Anon

    Thanks for the update Chris 🙂

  4. Nick Goodenough

    Appreciate the updates. Please keep these coming.

  5. Lorin

    Man o man how I envy you!
    Just learned about OSE and the GVCS a couple of weeks ago and am counting down the days until I can pack up, head out and lend a hand!
    truly inspiring, good for you!

    1. Marcin

      Please fill out a Dedicated Project Visit preliminary application and we’ll take it from there.

  6. Evan

    Nice! Looks like you’ve had a great lil work visit to FeF. My one constructive criticism… that 8 person habitat looks a little monastic, needs more aesthetic consideration. While all you science-types may shun considerations of form over function, it is crucial to a positive community space, productive environment and welcoming group.

    I suggest reading or brushing up on A Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander. Has some great design principles, for both communities and individual buildings.

  7. Mike

    This is great stuff – please keep the updates coming!

  8. Bob Waldrop

    Sounds great, I’m a true fan, and it’s always good to hear how things are going and that progress is being made.

  9. Daniel

    Correct me if I am wrong, but I see new square metal tubing and rebar in the photos. While metal stock like that is fairly cheap, it is not scrap prices unless you found a very well supplied scrap yard.

  10. Matt

    Why not use a non-electric rebar cutter? Something like this

    It’s fast and doesn’t take much effort (just weight).

  11. Ted

    Really wishing I could be there!…looks fab…ulous!

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