TL,DR: “forum.toms3d.org” is being taken offline. It was way too big of a challenge to run and didn’t provide much value.
It’s time. Forum.toms3d.org is going offline. The forum was originally started as a means to sharing thoughts, ideas and helping others, independent from my YouTube channel. At the time, it was looking like the trusted RepRap wiki and forum were not too well maintained and were going to buckle under the load eventually, so I wanted to have a backup at hand, just in case. And hey, maybe some folks would actually find the forum at toms3d.org useful.
A while ago, the forum was migrated from phpbb to Discourse, along with all users, posts etc. This was a massive undertaking. Unfortunately, it meant that time, energy and money was mostly spent on the migration itself instead of on just using the forum as intended. It feels like it mostly sat dormant since the move.
So far, setting up and maintaining the forum has easily cost a couple thousand of Euros, and it would need a lot more work put into it to make it usable at least. You’ve no doubt seen the issues e.g. with the SSL certificate expiring because something in the system wasn’t auto-renewing let’s encrypt properly. Which is just one of the things that would need to be taken care of.
The forum was never intended to be “profitable” in an economic sense. There were no ads, not fees, no way to generate revenue, and that was intentional and good that way. But I never expected it to become such a large project, and ultimately, was not able to run and maintain it the way a forum would deserve it. Plus, it looks like the RepRap forum is already running much better these days than it once did.
So long story short, the only reasonable thing to do is to close down the forum. Thank you to everyone who shared their knowledge, to the mods helping run it, and I hope everyone who used it learned something along the way.
If you’re looking for a functional forum, as always, I’d recommend the RepRap forum.
Thanks for tagging along for the ride, and as always, keep on making!
You can support me without spending a single penny!