This chat feature probably took me the better part of 2 weeks to build. Chat is deceptively complex. I hope you can be kind minded when approaching it. There are many things it should do that it doesn't do. For example there isn't an email notification for missed messages. Heck, it doesn't even allow multi-line messages. I believe in starting simple and iterating because of necessity.
Try it out
I also believe in focusing on value. So even though spending more time on chat would be a pleasure to me, I want to focus on what it is that you need. So in this sense, I'm asking if you would try starting a project and see how it works for you. If you have any problems, email me.
Today I met with the fine people behind Dive Design. They gave me a ton of feedback and thoughts to consider as I move forward. They also seem very interested in the future of buildapart. I've been mainly approaching this market as 2 sided. The people who need parts, and the part makers. It has come up more than once that there might be a 3rd and 4th spoke to the market. People with ideas and consultants which can facilitate the ideas into parts to be made.
With chat on some level of foundation, I'm going to be uploading parts that I've had made in the past. This way it can serve as an example of what a project might look like. After that I'll be banging my head on a better user experience and reaching out to people to start using buildapart seriously.