Hello and Welcome Everyone!
I'm Finn, the Designer/Maker and Managing Director behind Ashcroft Makers, located in Scotland.
I work from my small studio workshop, where I design and make bespoke 3D Printed Circular Sock Machines for the socknitting community, choosing Quality over Quantity.
Ashcroft Makers began 2 years ago, when I decided that making hats had to more than just a hobby. In October 2019, at the Loch Ness Knit Fest, I had an idea of making a Circular Hat Machine on my 3D printer. I don't need to tell you what happened next, because everyone in the socknitting community knows about it already.
I soon realised that there were no 3D CSM's available anywhere that actually worked, without needing 4 pairs of hands. As an X Financial Trader and Analyst with an interest in Engineering and IT, I was determined to solve these problems and so I designed my own machine from First Principles.
In January 2020 a prototype showcasing simulators and our use of 3D Printing technology to create products, such as sock machines, was presented at a STEM event held on the North East coast of Scotland.
These STEM events are primarily to assist young students to choose careers in STEM subjects. STEM Ambassaors travel to these events to highlight and share knowledge about a wide range of STEM careers available. These interactive activities allow engagement with students and their teachers, to encourage them to take up STEM subjects, which lead to a well paid and fulfilling careers.
The Ashcroft Circular Sock Machine was launched in February 2020, with a rotating cylinder and a dual tension cam system.
But I wasn't ready for what was about to happen. The Ashcroft CSM proved to be extremely popular in a matter of weeks and I received thousand of visitors to the website.
In April 2020 I quickly set about designing and developing knitting patterns for the ©Ashcroftmakers 3D Printed CSM, specific to this type of machine, as no other patterns existed. This was confirmed by my existing customers at the time, through an exchange of emails and social media.
This included the first 3D CSM published Toe up Sock pattern of its kind, followed shortly by patterns for Hats, Gloves, Cushion Covers and a Cast on Bonnet. Any published 3D sock patterns that exist today are derivatives of Ashcroft's copyrighted works.
The ©ashcroftmakers Toe up Sock Pattern was first published on 24th July 2020.
Owning and operating a successful business during a global pandemic, with no idea of what impact the lockdowns would have, has been an education in itself. Our production levels were impacted by global issues beyond our control.
I have now expanded the business with release dates for the ©Ashcroftmakers 3D CSM Kits to be announced shortly.
The one benefit of being a 3D sock machine manufacturer, is that you can adapt the business to meet your requirements easily, without having to retool. Soon you will be able to print your own circular sock machine without waiting.
Since our debut last year, there has been a huge amount of interest and activity in the industry.
As Coco Chanel once said "if you want to be original, be ready to be copied"