Has anyone explored using a RepRap to carve things instead of print things? I am thinking that it could be useful to carve signs or templates, mostly 2d structures, in addition to printing 3d structures. I would think that added flexibility would make RepRaps a much more desirable tool for the masses.
So maybe I missed it, but could you replace the extruder head with a Dremel tool for example?
A cartesian robot is not suited for carving, for that you are likely to need a 5 axis CNC or a robot arm
The robot arm is a good proposition but it would need to sit on a turntable or the the work to be on a turntable to access areas to carve
I've got a plan to use a reprap to build the parts for a robotic arm like that, but smaller of course. It'll allow for more complex shapes, different kinds of fabrication (like friction welding), and in general really shake things up.
You could do simple 3d subtractive carving if you stick a router or router-equivalent toolhead on the reprap.
My little central coast thing is working on that. But, of course, it'll take a while. You could also just stick a really strong dremel in there, turn it on, and start carving. I'd imagine you could make a model like now, but reverse it (stick model and subtract it from a digital brick).