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3D printing growing as we speak

3D Printer 3D printing

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#61 BluePopsicle

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 01:05 AM

Oh I'm so going to enjoy watching this build.  I just learned about 3d printers a couple days ago and it's really impressive!  You're off to a great start!



#62 Deano

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 01:32 AM

This is from whence it came :  http://www.scalemoto...n-flathead.html

 

And that thread is almost a year old and, as far as I can tell, the flathead is still not available (at least not from tdr).

 

edit:  Available in sub assemblies on the Shapeways website.


Edited by Deano, 22 October 2013 - 01:40 AM.


#63 Skydime

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 03:46 AM

This is the evolutionary step that will forever get rid of mold lines.  No more sanding and filling.  That's a step forward in itself right there.



#64 raildogg

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 04:05 AM

If you have $1500.00 checkout Radio Shacks entry for a turnkey desktop model. Still not in styrene though.



#65 Casey

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 04:06 AM

This is the evolutionary step that will forever get rid of mold lines. 

 

What about the layer lines/"steps"? Show me a 3D printed part which has a perfectly flat, smooth surface. You can't. 3D printing by it's very nature does not allow for the same type of parts as one finds in an injection molded kit.

 

We've been discussing 3D printing here on the forum for at least three years, and despite claims of it being  "already here, who here has the ability to print anything via a 3D printer in their home?



#66 Skydime

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 04:09 AM

 

What about the layer lines/"steps"? Show me a 3D printed part which has a perfectly flat, smooth surface. You can't. 3D printing by it's very nature does not allow for the same type of parts as one finds in an injection molded kit.


 

 

 

I'm sure that's something that will be worked out very soon as quickly as this technology advances.  Seems like in the past few months, the applications have been growing in leaps and bounds.  It wouldn't surprise me one bit if 3d printing issues were all resolved within the next six months to year.


Edited by Skydime, 22 October 2013 - 04:34 AM.


#67 Casey

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 04:29 AM

I'm sure that's something that will be worked out very soon as quickly as this technology advances.

 

I'm not so sure. Every time the topic is brought up, we get the people who say "it's here, NOW!", and other who continue to say "it's almost here", but you can keep saying that for years. Eventually, you'll probably be right, but that doesn't mean it's available to the average consumer at an affordable price right now. What's affordable? I guess that varies for each of use, but let's say $250 for the printer and $60 for the print media, so roughly $300 for the printer related stuff, and I haven't even mentioned the program, downloadable files, etc.

 

It's not here yet for the average consumer, and I don't think it will be for another five years at least. I don't think it'll ever replace nor even dominate traditional injection molding, either.



#68 Harry P.

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 04:36 AM

 I don't think it'll ever replace nor even dominate traditional injection molding, either.

 

Wanna bet?  

 

You sound like the blacksmith who's watching one of those newfangled "horseless carriages" sputter past his shop, while he's thinking "that contraption will never replace a good horse!"  ;)



#69 Casey

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 04:36 AM

It wouldn't surprise me one bit if 3d printing issues were all resolved within the next six months to year.

 

That's my point- the technology isn't progressing as quickly as some would have you believe. I bet I can find a thread on the forum from two years ago which contained the same prediction. Nobody can put a hard date on when the technology will be available and affordable to the average consumer, I understand that, but anyone can keep saying "it's almost" here year after year, and eventually you'll probably be right...but it still isn't available and affordable to the mass consumer now.



#70 Casey

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 04:40 AM

 

Wanna bet?  

 

You sound like the blacksmith who's watching one of those newfangled "horseless carriages" sputter past his shop, while he's thinking "that contraption will never replace a good horse!"  ;)

 

No, I'm not denying it's going to have a major effect, but I see it as more of a companion to rather than a replacement for injection molding. Plus, I don't see it happening as quickly as you. I'd love to be proven wrong, and it doesn't matter to me personally if my feelings are right or wrong, because it's pretty clear 3D printing will benefit us all....whenever it finally gets here.  :P  :lol:  ;)



#71 Harry P.

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 04:41 AM

...but it still isn't available and affordable to the mass consumer now.

 

New technology is usually expensive when it first comes out. VCRs were very expensive at first, but by the time DVR technology came along, a VCR could be had for less than $100. Flat-screen TVs were very expensive at first, now they sell for mainstream prices.

 

3-D printing is at that initial stage... it's here. It exists. It's being used in business and industry. But the prices haven't dropped to "friendly consumer levels" yet. But it will, it's inevitable. Once a new technology is developed and it works, it's only a matter of time before it filters down to the mass market.

 

You're correct that nobody can accurately give us a specific date... but it's coming, no doubt. My guess is within the next 10 years a 3-D printer will be as common in the average home as a microwave oven.



#72 Greg Myers

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 04:47 AM

 

I'm not so sure. Every time the topic is brought up, we get the people who say "it's here, NOW!", and other who continue to say "it's almost here", but you can keep saying that for years. Eventually, you'll probably be right, but that doesn't mean it's available to the average consumer at an affordable price right now. What's affordable? I guess that varies for each of use, but let's say $250 for the printer and $60 for the print media, so roughly $300 for the printer related stuff, and I haven't even mentioned the program, downloadable files, etc.

 

It's not here yet for the average consumer, and I don't think it will be for another five years at least. I don't think it'll ever replace nor even dominate traditional injection molding, either.

Flathead.jpg



#73 Skydime

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 05:05 AM

 

I'm not so sure. Every time the topic is brought up, we get the people who say "it's here, NOW!", and other who continue to say "it's almost here", but you can keep saying that for years. Eventually, you'll probably be right, but that doesn't mean it's available to the average consumer at an affordable price right now. What's affordable? I guess that varies for each of use, but let's say $250 for the printer and $60 for the print media, so roughly $300 for the printer related stuff, and I haven't even mentioned the program, downloadable files, etc.

 

It's not here yet for the average consumer, and I don't think it will be for another five years at least. I don't think it'll ever replace nor even dominate traditional injection molding, either.

Yeah, I agree with affordability being an issue.  But like most technology, the price will eventually come down.  It may take quite a while but, it will.  And let's be honest here, everyone doesn't exactly have the required knowledge to use the technology either.

 

  But there are, however, strategic people and companies that are interested in the industry who can make things happen.  It just honestly amazes me when I see organizations like NASA embracing the technology and the benefits it can provide.  The acceptance and interest in the technology is what makes me think that someone will soon be able to resolve the issues with the quality.

 

Wil they soon or ever "replace" injection molded kits?  Probably not.  But once it becomes more "commonplace"  I do see people designing prototypes, "printing" them off, smoothing them out, and using them for resin casting semi frequently.


Edited by Skydime, 22 October 2013 - 05:27 AM.


#74 sjordan2

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 06:06 AM

Even though an affordable home printer may be just around the corner, I think it will take much longer than might be assumed for meaningful mass market penetration. Demand will drive what happens, and I don't see this tool as important to consumers as a microwave oven, or like the evolution of home computer systems.

There's still the challenge of software availability and price, plus the learning curve to master creating your own designs. I know Shapeways offers certain free programs, but I wonder how many hobbyists are even using those now. Scanners will also have to get much cheaper (don't some printers come with built-in 3D scanners?).

I just see the market for a home version as specialized and narrow, which will probably appeal mostly to some types of businesses, certain hobbyists and those who have well-equipped home workshops, and not as a mass market product. This product will never achieve "must-have" importance for everyday consumers any more than a lathe or CNC router.

Edited by sjordan2, 22 October 2013 - 11:11 AM.


#75 Russell C

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 07:03 AM

I'd argue that 3D printing is "here" and available for general use among hobbyists in no different manner than destop publishing is here. Destop publishing will never replace mass-publishing by traditional printing presses, but the average citizen with a computer can print up rudimentary "lost pet" flyers with photos and clipart graphics, or they can go full tilt and publish a model car magazine like Roy Sorenson does. Or they can design their own decals from scratch, perfectly replicate old sheets and resize them as needed, or do artwork for photoetch parts.

 

But the barriers are learning the software, and finding service providers to complete the work, and having the money for all of that. It's all a matter of how involved each person wants to get. In the case of both publishing and 3D printing, the technologies were totally out of the reach of the average citizen.

 

Check out this short tutorial on what looks like a simplistic drawing program, and you get an idea of how a person can create a part that injection molders will never be able to justify making, due to their own barriers of low-volume / niche market problems. Then rummage around in YouTube for other tutorials on how to draw 3D cars and the parts on them. I can hardly wait 'til the time I can take the total plunge into this myself.

 



#76 sjordan2

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 11:39 AM

One question: If you were an average guy and didn't build plastic car models, what would you use it for on a regular basis?

#77 Chuck Most

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 11:54 AM

This is the evolutionary step that will forever get rid of mold lines.  No more sanding and filling.  That's a step forward in itself right there.

Well, in that particular case "We're not there yet, folks." B) I have a few 3D printed parts in my possession (and a few more resin cast pieces mastered from printed parts), and all of them have pretty rough surface textures. Maybe that'll change in the future, but for now you're just trading mold lines, flash, sink marks, and the like for an overall rough surface.



#78 raildogg

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 11:55 AM

I may be wrong here but it seems that most people get the wrong impression about 3D printing.

The best definition is done by fused deposition method and not currently available  to the hobbyist.

This uses a powdered medium which is cured by UV light and uses a printer like head to spray a binder on the powder, and then cured using the lights

The so called home table top models such as, Makerbot, and the Mendel Prusa  use a spool of ABS, or PVA filament to melt by layers the part you want. This is the reason for the layer marks. I find that there is a lot of profit built in to the price. They are made of mostly inexpensive hardware items readily available at Home Depot or your local hardware store. The really important parts are the heated extruder and the heated build table which are very reasonable priced from the suppliers. The real trick is the design software. It must by done as a 3D model and most CAD software have a semi steep to very steep learning curve. It is not as easy as it looks boys. I have my parts made by Shapeways, where I can chose a material for my build. I have the luxury of having a desktop CNC gantry router, and a mini mill and lathe in my shop. I  am also, a certified Auto CAD 2000 Operator and have a Degree in Machine Design with a Minor in Solid Works CAD Modeling. So, take it from me it'll be a long time before FDM 3D Printing comes to your living room. The really good stuff will stay industrial for a good long time.



#79 Chief Joseph

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 12:40 PM

One question: If you were an average guy and didn't build plastic car models, what would you use it for on a regular basis?

The jewelry-making crowd is going bananas over 3D printing.  It helps cut their production costs and time, which is the basic value of the technology for just about everyone who uses it.  If you browse around the Shapeways marketplace, there are all sorts of things people are making for unique applications.  Like this:

http://www.shapeways...up&materialId=6

 

or this:

http://www.shapeways...up&materialId=6



#80 bbowser

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 12:44 PM

I may be wrong here but it seems that most people get the wrong impression about 3D printing.

The best definition is done by fused deposition method and not currently available  to the hobbyist.

This uses a powdered medium which is cured by UV light and uses a printer like head to spray a binder on the powder, and then cured using the lights

The so called home table top models such as, Makerbot, and the Mendel Prusa  use a spool of ABS, or PVA filament to melt by layers the part you want. This is the reason for the layer marks. I find that there is a lot of profit built in to the price. They are made of mostly inexpensive hardware items readily available at Home Depot or your local hardware store. The really important parts are the heated extruder and the heated build table which are very reasonable priced from the suppliers. The real trick is the design software. It must by done as a 3D model and most CAD software have a semi steep to very steep learning curve. It is not as easy as it looks boys. I have my parts made by Shapeways, where I can chose a material for my build. I have the luxury of having a desktop CNC gantry router, and a mini mill and lathe in my shop. I  am also, a certified Auto CAD 2000 Operator and have a Degree in Machine Design with a Minor in Solid Works CAD Modeling. So, take it from me it'll be a long time before FDM 3D Printing comes to your living room. The really good stuff will stay industrial for a good long time.

That's all well and good.  We shouldn't expect to be making our own kits at home of that '53 Nash you've always wanted.  I'm thinking of talented guys like you, Richard, with the know how applying their skills to expand a cottage industry to include stuff the majors can't or won't.  I look at it as an expansion of the resin industry, making things easier/faster/more economically.  Eventually the technology may make it to the home but probably in ways we haven't even thought of.