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Open Source Ecology

Open Source Ecology is accelerating the growth of the next economy - the Open Source Economy - an economy that optimizes both production and distribution - while promoting environmental regeneration and social justice. We are building the Global Village Construction Set. This is a high-performance, modular, do-it-yourself, low-cost platform - that allows for the easy fabrication of the 50 different industrial machines that it takes - to build a small, sustainable civilization with modern comforts.

Global Village Construction Set

Video overview of Open Source Ecology’s work describing the Global Village Construction Set.

Gvcs All 50

The GVCS in itself consists of many other Construction Sets – as we build not individual machines, but construction sets of machines. As an example, the Fabrication Construction Set component can be used to build any of the other machines. Our goal is lifetime design, and low maintenance so only a few hours of maintenance per year are required to keep any machine alive.

We have built the first machine in 2007 – the Compressed Earth Brick Press. Since then, we have been moving forward steadily, improving the performance and production efficiencies of our machines. We have achieved a landmark One Day production time of the Compressed Earth Brick Press in 2012, and we intend to bring down the production time down to 1 day for each of the other machines. In 2013, we used our tractor, brick press, and soil pulverizer to build a comfortable home – the Microhouse. We continue to dogfood our tools in agriculture, construction, and fabrication – as we build our facility up to a world-class research center for open source, libre technology and decentralized production. In 2014, we will be moving to a replicable workshop model of production – integrating immersion education and production – where we intend to scale by distributing our open enterprise models far and wide. Our goal is to demonstrate how these machines contribute to creating a world beyond artificial material scarcity – by creating an open documentation, development, and production platform – towards the open source economy.

Our metric of completion is demonstrating a replicable, open source, social production model for a given machine. We call this the Learning Factor-e model. The main steps are a proof of concept, first prototype, full documentation, a working prototype, and an open enterprise model.

In 2018, our status of completion for the machines is about 1/3 done:


By using simple, modular, scalable design and open source collaboration, we are breaking cost barriers. Here is a sample comparison of our price point goals – compared to industry standards – for the same productivity performance machine:

GVCS Cost Comparison : Industry Standards

MachinePrototype: Materials + LaborPrototype: Materials OnlyRetail ModelRetail PricePrice DifferenceSavings - Labor + MaterialsSavings - Materials Only
3D Printer$1,765.20$1,000.00BFB 3000 3D CAD Printer$4,449.00$2,683.8060.32%77.52%
3D Scanner$4,030.40$2,500.00Artec M 3D Scanner$14,086.00$10,055.6071.39%82.25%
Aluminum Extractor from Clay$53,060.80$50,000.00(N/A)
Backhoe$4,530.40$3,000.00John Deere BH11$12,692.00$8,161.6064.31%76.36%
Bakery Oven$5,030.40$3,500.00Blodgett ZEPHAIREGPLUSBAS NG$5,725.00$694.6012.13%38.86%
Baler$6,295.60$4,000.00John Deere 328 Twine Baler$19,708.00$13,412.4068.06%79.70%
Bioplastic Extruder$15,060.80$12,000.00Plastic Pipe Extruder - MSZS51$31,000.00$15,939.2051.42%61.29%
Bulldozer$23,060.80$20,000.00John Deere 650J Crawler Dozer$137,772.00$114,711.2083.26%85.48%
CEB Press$5,530.40$4,000.00Powell & Sons PGA-600-12$52,500.00$46,969.6089.47%92.38%
Cement Mixer$1,765.20$1,000.00Monolithic Portable Concrete Mixer$6,695.00$4,929.8073.63%85.06%
Chipper / Hammermill$1,765.20$1,000.00Buskirk Hammermill 20HP 3-Phase$5,250.00$3,484.8066.38%80.95%
CNC Circuit Mill$1,765.20$1,000.00LPKF ProtoMat E33 $8,200.00$6,434.8078.47%87.80%
CNC Torch Table$5,530.40$4,000.00Torchmate 3$16,881.00$11,350.6067.24%76.30%
Dairy Milker$3,530.40$2,000.00Mobile Milking Trolley$4,999.00$1,468.6029.38%59.99%
Dimensional Sawmill$7,295.60$5,000.00Mobile Manufacturing Mobile Dimensional Saw$34,250.00$26,954.4078.70%85.40%
Electrical Motor / Generator$4,530.40$3,000.00200hp 1785RPM 460 Volts Leeson Electric Motor$5,603.00$1,072.6019.14%46.46%
Gasifier Burner$2,530.40$1,000.00GEK Tower of Total Thermal Integration$5,585.00$3,054.6054.69%82.09%
Hay Cutter$2,765.20$2,000.00John Deere SB31$4,962.00$2,196.8044.27%59.69%
Hay Rake$1,765.20$1,000.00John Deere WR54 Wheel Rake$23,263.00$21,497.8092.41%95.70%
Hydraulic Motor$2,530.40$1,000.00Eaton Hydraulic Motor 22.6 cu. in.$484.50-$2,045.90-422.27No value assigned
Induction Furnace$18,060.80$15,000.00Amelt 200kw AM MF 900/200$110,500.00$92,439.2083.66%86.43%
Industrial Robot$7,295.60$5,000.00Kuka KR 1000 Titan
Ironworker$6,295.60$4,000.00Edwards EDWIW120-02$20,926.00$14,630.4069.91%80.89%
Laser Cutter$4,530.40$3,000.00Amada Quattro 2000w$294,000.00$289,469.6098.46%98.98%
Metal Roller$11,060.80$8,000.00
Microcombine$11,060.80$8,000.00John Deere S550 Combine$294,495.00$283,434.2096.24%97.28%
Microtractor$5,530.40$4,000.00BCS Rear Tine Tiller 340CC - 26 Inch$3,499.80-$2,030.60-58.02No value assigned
Modern Steam Engine$3,530.40$2,000.00Green Steam Engine$2,000.00-$1,530.40-76.52%0.00%
Multimachine$5,295.60$3,000.00Jet 690913 JTM-1050EVS/230 Milling Machine$34,010.00$28,714.4084.43%91.18%
Nickel-Iron Battery$1,765.20$1,000.00Nickel-Iron Batteries 20kWhr$20,000.00$18,234.8091.17%95.00%
Open Source Car$11,060.80$8,000.00Toyota Camry 2012$23,000.00$11,939.2051.91%65.22%
Open Source Truck$11,060.80$8,000.00Ford F150 2012$22,990.00$11,929.2051.89%65.20%
Pelletizer$5,530.40$4,000.00Buskirk Model PM1230 Pellet Mill$16,550.00$11,019.6066.58%75.83%
Plasma Cutter$6,530.40$5,000.00Miller 875 Air Plasma Cutter$3,618.00-$2,912.40-80.50No value assigned
Power Cube$1,565.20$800.00Greenlee Hydraulic Power Unit 13hp$6,269.00$4,703.8075.03%87.24%
Press Forge$9,060.80$6,000.00
Rod and Wire Mill$13,060.80$10,000.00
Rototiller$1,765.20$1,000.00John Deere RT52 Rotary Tiller$4,804.00$3,038.8063.26%79.18%
Solar Concentrator$5,530.40$4,000.00Solartron Solarbeam$41,000.00$35,469.6086.51%90.24%
Spader$3,530.40$2,000.00Imants 47S Rotary Spader$56,140.00$52,609.6093.71%96.44%
Steam Generator$1,765.20$1,000.00
Tractor$9,060.80$6,000.00John Deere 5075M Utility Tractor$44,487.00$35,426.2079.63%86.51%
Trencher$5,530.40$4,000.00John Deere TR60B Trencher$7,740.00$2,209.6028.55%48.32%
Universal Power Supply$4,030.40$2,500.003600W, 48V, OutBack Power Inverter $4,999.00$968.6019.38%49.99%
Universal Rotor$1,765.20$1,000.00(N/A)
Universal Seeder$4,530.40$3,000.00John Deere 1700 Planter$19,365.00$14,834.6076.61%84.51%
Universal Welder$4,030.40$2,500.00Miller Pipeworx$13,890.00$9,859.6070.98%82.00%
Well-Drilling Rig$6,030.40$4,500.00BoreMaster Hydraulic Rig$16,464.00$10,433.6063.37%72.67%
Wind Turbine$9,060.80$6,000.00FSW 50kw Wind Turbine Generator and Inverter$162,397.00$153,336.2094.42%96.31%


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See Also