Of course, you want a 3D printer, but these things can cost a great deal of money that you can’t just come up with, especially if you’re eleven years old. And then there’s mom. How can you convince her that it’s a good investment? Tom Hazzard and Tracy Hazzard give some tips on how to convince your mother to look into your proposal and act on it. It’s all about persistence and showing her that you are taking it seriously. Listen and learn more.
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How Do I Get My Mom To Buy Me A 3D Printer?
This is Ask Us Anything segment.
Our question came from our SoCal MakerCon visit. We had a few people stop by our booth and give us their questions. This one came from an 11 or 12-year-old boy who stopped by and said, “I want my mom to buy me a 3D printer. How do I get her to do it?” I thought, “That’s a great question.” That’s exactly what we want to talk about.
It is a good question. There are many ways you could go with this as to, “How do I get mom to buy me a 3D printer?” Kick the educational aspect and say, “Mom, it’s going to help me with my math, science, engineering, and learning.”
How about she read this and let’s talk to mom?
Do you want to do that?
Yeah, let’s try that. What would work with me? What works with me is anything having to do with education. If you can demonstrate its educational value, there’s a good return on investment for that. Mom has to be thinking about that. I certainly would. I’m thinking that if it’s going to give you as a student a better well-rounded education, it’s going to improve your grades in the courses you already have, and/or if it’s going to give you future career, that’s certainly many ways that I would think about that.
There are certainly a ton of emerging careers involving 3D printing, but will your mom believe that? You’re in the industry. You, Tracy, are a part of the 3D converted but what if you’re not?
It’s still a compelling argument. There are many articles out there. There are many pieces of information and data out there. If you came with a little one-pager summary or a PowerPoint presentation, I’d say it’s compelling.
If you are reading this, she’s telling you, students out there, to not only pitch your mom but to write a little report or a one-pager to sell this idea to mom. If my kid came to me with that preparation, it would be impressive.The educational value of a 3D printer is a very good return of investment. Click To Tweet
Make sure you cite where you got your data from because your mom wants to know that it wasn’t from your buddy next door and that it came from the Economist or something like that. Make sure that it’s valid and interesting information or statistic that comes from a reliable source. That speaks a lot to me. The other thing is there’s probably a group doing a presentation in your area. Take mom with you and have mom come.
That’s a good idea. There are a lot of places you can go for free to see a demo. We even went to Barnes & Noble bookstore. We saw that they had a Mini Maker Event. At this event is a demo XYZ da Vinci Jr 3D printer. We were surprised. We went in to take our kids to show it to them. They quickly and happily powered it on and started a demo print. They showed us all how it worked and they were knowledgeable. I was impressed with how knowledgeable they were.
I was expecting it to be maybe one guy in the store knew what he was doing, but almost everybody knew what it was and had generated enough interest during the Mini Maker Faire that everyone in the store became knowledgeable enough in it. That says a lot about both the trading that happened there but also about the power of how interested people are in it.
The employees at Barnes & Noble care about their work. They’re not just there to collect a paycheck. They love books, reading, and education. These people had an interest in 3D printing and in this printer. They knew what they were doing. That’s great. XYZ did a good job picking that retail establishment. Take your mom out and see one.
Your mom is going to drive you. Invite her in and have her hang out and watch it.
You need to do that. She needs to see it.
The last idea is to make her something cool. There are a lot of outsourcing places where you can upload a file. You must have a computer already, go to the library and use one, borrow one from a buddy or your dad or your mom and use their computer to go to do some free software. Make something. Make it on Shapeways or i.materialise and have it shipped to you. Make her a Christmas, holiday, Hanukkah gift or whatever.
Prepare ahead and make her a Mother’s Day gift. Maybe your birthday is soon after that and try and make it a birthday gift.
“Look at all the great things I can make, mom.”
“I want to make it my summer major project or activity. This is what I’m going to do with my summer. If we could get a 3D printer.”
That’s another thing. There are holiday camps. We found out in the area here that there are a lot of Makerspaces who are offering holiday camps for kids your age. There are all summer long teen camps. They start at about age 10 to 11. I’ve discovered from most of them probably because it requires a little bit more skill and focus than your average youth camp, but it starts at about that age and goes on up until 16, 17, 18. I’ve seen them even doing that. That’s a great thing. Ask mom to enroll you in one of these camps. You’re out of her hair for a week doing this. You’re busy. You’re learning something and she sees how interested you are.
The only advice I would give you, I’m not a mom you have to convince, but I had to convince Tracy to allow us to get a 3D printer and that was no easy task. I did and look at where we are now. We have a whole show built around this.
It takes time. Don’t expect it to be overnight.
My advice is persistence pays off. Not to be a broken record and annoy your mom, but continue to express real interest and desire to do these things. As Tracy suggests, go out and use some free resources available. Help engage your mom or your parents in it and show them by doing how much you’re interested in it.
This is another thing to think about. You’ve got to listen to your mom’s objections to it. If her objections are solely because it’s not in the budget now, ask her what would be a budget or, “If you earned half of it, could we buy this?” I’m going to make myself sound geeky but back when I was about 10 or 11, I convinced my dad that if I paid for half of a microscope, we would buy a microscope. Sure enough, I earned it and we bought a microscope.
I was buying my Walkman but you were buying a microscope?
I know. I was geeky but it was what it was. It was the fact that I was willing to chip in half of it that convinced my dad I was serious about it. He would have paid for the whole thing at that point but I committed to it and he let me follow through with it. In that sense, you have to demonstrate that you’re willing to participate in the process with her on that and figure out what the budget is. Seriously comb through and do your research. If she says your budget is $500, find the best printer for $500 and if that means you need to build it yourself, think about it.Persistence pays off. Click To Tweet
Building one is a project I want to do to learn some more about it at some point, but you don’t need to. The da Vinci Jr is $350 and that’s one of the cheapest ones.
There’s also Micro 3D and all those out there that are coming down in cost. They’re great starter printers for you. There are a lot of resources out there to do it within the budget. When you go and show her and know that these printers aren’t all $3,000 or more, here they are. You’ve listened to her objections and shown her otherwise. That says a lot about your interest, persistence and resourcefulness, which is an important characteristic for your mom to say that you’re serious about this. I can’t tell you, with moms, how many instruments, equipment, toys, and things end up broken on the bottom of our closet because you weren’t serious about whatever it is you begged for. Demonstrating that ahead of time goes a long way with mom.
With all the money that a lot of parents, not all parents, but a lot of parents spend on sports equipment for participating in sporting events like lacrosse, hockey, or some of these sports. Parents spend a lot of money on equipment on some of these things. If you’re able to do that, your family might do that for you. Putting a little different emphasis on how you might spend some of your extracurricular time, this could be a worthwhile purchase and may be affordable for a lot of families.
There are affordable options out there. I hope this helps you and if you have any other questions, make sure to ask us anything.
Everywhere at @HazzDesign.
Thanks so much for reading. We’ll look forward to talking to you next time.
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