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Geek Tool: Slashdot Video of Award Winning 3D Printer From CES 137

Posted by Roblimo
from the 3D-isn't-as-good-as-4D dept.
The Makerbot Replicator is a personal 3D printer, which can create three-dimensional objects through connecting and layering successive cross sections of material. The new version is bigger, better, and easier to set up than earlier MakerBots. In this video Tim made at CES, MakerBot CEO Bre Pettis shows us how wonderful a device it is, and tells us why every child (and most adults) should have a MakerBot.

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Geek Tool: Slashdot Video of Award Winning 3D Printer From CES

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  • Non biodegradable? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by jythie (914043)
    I wonder if it can also support non-biodegradable materials too. Biodegradable is not always a good thing for durable/non-disposable things.
    • by ZankerH (1401751) on Friday January 13, 2012 @09:58AM (#38685098)
      But it's meant precisely for disposable, non-durable crap that currently only comes in non-biodegradable, chinese-slave made form.
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by jythie (914043)
        Seems kinda limiting. When I look at these machines I see the potential to make all sorts of stuff that normally I would have to contract out to a machine shop (which for 1 or 2 of an item is not very cost effective)... but if the thing is going to start breaking down after a few months or years that kinda limits applications.
        • by lochnessie (1291986) on Friday January 13, 2012 @10:28AM (#38685394)

          Seems kinda limiting. When I look at these machines I see the potential to make all sorts of stuff that normally I would have to contract out to a machine shop (which for 1 or 2 of an item is not very cost effective)... but if the thing is going to start breaking down after a few months or years that kinda limits applications.

          The two standard printing materials for the RepRap family of printers (and their descendants, like the MakerBot) are the biodegradable PLA, and standard petroleum-based ABS. PLA will degrade over time, but only under certain environmental conditions; it's unlikely to fall apart in normal use (most industrial thermophilic composting processes run at pretty high temperatures (60C and up). I guess you probably shouldn't use it to print an industrial composter.

          ABS is ABS, and whatever you make with it will be around forever, so print your PLA composter with this instead.

    • Re: (Score:2, Offtopic)

      by ThosLives (686517)

      This entirely. When a MakerBot can start making things out of engineering materials capable of handing meaningful loads and temperatures (metal and ceramic, perhaps some high-performance plastics) then we have something.

      I'd also like to see a MakerBot that can produce more general consumer goods, such as shoes, clothing, and other tools.

      Of course, if many people have a general-purpose micro factory in their homes, then much of the world economy will be in for a new shock - and commodities prices and raw ma

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Look at these two "extreme" 3D printers:

        D-shape technology:
        http://vimeo.com/29288417 (password is "moon")

        Markus Kayser system:
        http://vimeo.com/25401444

        Cheers,

        Giovanni
         

      • by El Torico (732160) on Friday January 13, 2012 @10:47AM (#38685612)

        There are other devices that use ceramics, metals, or plastics. There are about 30 companies that make some form of additive manufacturing device using different processes like Selective Laser Sintering, Fused Deposition Modeling, and 3D Printing. This is a new industrial revolution that's just getting started. With these devices you can make small production runs cost effective and efficient. Also, these processes produce far less waste, so they use less material and energy.

        As for consumer goods, I haven't seen clothing, but there are a lot of interesting items being designed for everyday use on Shapeways [shapeways.com].

        I've been following Additive Manufacturing since I read the article "Print me a Stradivarius" [economist.com] in the Economist. I expect this to be as significant as the Internet.

        • by Ihmhi (1206036)

          I personally look forward to the trolling.

          First we had black faxes. Then we had spam mail. Now we'll have three-dimensional, biodegradable genitalia.

        • by mounthood (993037)

          I expect this to be as significant as the Internet.

          I disagree. Utility is very low factor in the sale of most items, and something us geeks focus on more then most. For example, the shopping categories from the shapeways.com website is almost all toys and trinkets.

          * Holiday Gift Guide
          * Featured
          * Art
          * Gadgets
          * Home Decor
          * Jewelry
          * Hobby

          Marketing and branding is a major hurdle opposed to the home creation of small items. There's an industry that will marginalize such items as 'cheap' and 'purely utilitarian' (meaning they lack emotion!?) and 'poor qual

          • by El Torico (732160)
            You should read the article that I referred to in my original post since it gives a much better explanation of the subject than I did. I agree that the Shapeways site doesn't have that much by way of utility, but it's just a small part of what's going on in the field.
      • by Kleen13 (1006327) on Friday January 13, 2012 @11:39AM (#38686340)

        When a MakerBot can start making things out of engineering materials capable of handing meaningful loads and temperatures (metal and ceramic, perhaps some high-performance plastics) then we have something.

        I have to say, to be able to quickly prototype a model and get a hands-on form fit and function before going to the machine shop with these is golden, this technology has already saved my company buckets of money.

      • by Niko. (89205) on Friday January 13, 2012 @11:51AM (#38686560)

        i know a couple of people who use 3d printers. when they want to make parts that need to be stronger than the PLA/ABS raw material, they "simply" print the model, use it to make a mold and cast the mold with bronze or copper or what have you.
        it stops being an all-in-one solution but still allows detailed custom shapes with good strength and appearance.

        • by psydeshow (154300)

          when they want to make parts that need to be stronger than the PLA/ABS raw material, they "simply" print the model, use it to make a mold and cast the mold with bronze or copper or what have you.

          This. If you're only looking at the initial printing material you're missing out on how that combines with existing manufacturing processes -- it's now possible to make *anything* using a digital 3D model as a starting point. Which means rapid prototyping, version control, download-distribution, and infinite repeatability.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by montyzooooma (853414)

        such as shoes, clothing

        Seems like overkill for these when you can already create an infinite variety of shoes and clothing with nothing but a bunch of plastic garbage bags and a roll of duct tape.

      • by jank1887 (815982) on Friday January 13, 2012 @12:03PM (#38686820)

        Similar technology, much better materials: www.stratasys.com

        of course, the 'good machines' cost as much as my house. the high precision ABS ones are ~50k or less, though. Build temperature is a big part of it. most of them, the build area is a furnace to keep environmental temperature right for layer-to-layer adhesion. there's only so much you can do with only a heated nozzle. and they have to very carefully control material quality to get the build resolution and accuracy they give, so there are humidity controls, etc. high precision motors and controllers are a big deal, too.

    • by bartoku (922448) on Friday January 13, 2012 @10:06AM (#38685170)
      In the makerbot store [makerbot.com] there are ABS, PLA, and water soluble PVA filament spools.
      I assume ABS is the plastic we are used to seeing everywhere that is fairly durable and water proof and that the water soluble PVA is the corn product he talked about in the video.
      • by Zerth (26112) on Friday January 13, 2012 @10:20AM (#38685304)

        PLA is corn based.

        PVA(polyvinyl alcohol) is made from polyvinyl acetate, which is made from ethylene, which is made from steam cracking petroleum. Not very renewable, but good as a wash-away support material.

        • There's no reason you couldn't get the ethylene somewhere else, of course (for example, it's released by ripening fruit).

          • by Zerth (26112)

            Nope, no reason you couldn't acquire it by several other means. I'll restate: most ethylene used in the production of polyvinyl acetate comes from steam cracking petroleum.

            Indeed, most ethylene used in commercial ripening procedures to forcibly ripen fruit comes from ethanol. But that method isn't significantly used in the commercial production of PVA, to my knowledge.

    • by Sqweegee (968985)

      It can print with non-biodegradable plastics like ABS too, the same stuff used for lego bricks.

      Everyone plugs their bio-friendly products these days, and some designs on these could produce a significant amount of waste.

    • The is no issue of PLA spontaneously biodegrading, you have to compost it fairly carefully. (No idea if this is as green as it sounds, it gives off a lot of CO2, recycling should be preferable but the infrastructure isn't yet in place).

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Have a look at reprap.org

      Printers like this typically print PLA (the biodegradable stuff in the video) or ABS (a more permanent, non-biodegradable) plastic.

    • There is already perfectly good technology for making items out of other materials, like CNC machines. If you couple that with a scrap furnace to remelt all the shavings you get cutting metal, there is very little waste. With wood, toss the shavings back into the forest and it eventually becomes more wood. Concrete can be formed additively, it's called "slip forming" and is used all the time for making things like highway pavement. Some people are working on general purpose 3-D concrete formers that wor

  • Because they kept on overlapping on the right side of the video. If you've got good Karma, disable the ads!

    So how much is this (and the feedstock)? When will it be available? Actually the second question is probably moot, it's so cool it'll probably be sold out for a long time (at least until it can it self replicate to make more! :)

    • by Simon Brooke (45012) <stillyet@googlemail.com> on Friday January 13, 2012 @10:04AM (#38685152) Homepage Journal

      Read TFL [makerbot.com]. It's available now, it costs $1,749.00, and the feedstock costs about fifty dollars a spool.

      • by Aladrin (926209)

        Yes, but how many Stephen Colbert heads do you get per spool?

        My problem with these 3d techs online is that there's no good way to know exactly how much you can DO with a given amount of raw material. At some point, i'm going to have to break down and purchase things, just to get a baseline on cost.

        He claims in the video that the material is so cheap you can just give things to friends and print more, but... Somehow, I doubt it's that cheap.

        • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 13, 2012 @10:21AM (#38685310)

          Yes, but how many Stephen Colbert heads do you get per spool?

          My problem with these 3d techs online is that there's no good way to know exactly how much you can DO with a given amount of raw material. At some point, i'm going to have to break down and purchase things, just to get a baseline on cost.

          He claims in the video that the material is so cheap you can just give things to friends and print more, but... Somehow, I doubt it's that cheap.

          Learn to calculate volume - the material is consumed based on how much volume goes into your part.

          • Yes, but how many Stephen Colbert heads do you get per spool?

            My problem with these 3d techs online is that there's no good way to know exactly how much you can DO with a given amount of raw material. At some point, i'm going to have to break down and purchase things, just to get a baseline on cost.

            He claims in the video that the material is so cheap you can just give things to friends and print more, but... Somehow, I doubt it's that cheap.

            Learn to calculate volume - the material is consumed based on how much volume goes into your part.

            I think he wants to know how much plastic is in 1 kilo of spool. From what I could find, ABS density is roughly 1.05g/cm^3 and PVA is 1.19-1.31g/cm^3 which means that:

            1000g is roughly 952.380952cm^3 of ABS plastic

            OR

            1000g is roughly 800cm^3 of PVA plastic (with 1.25g/cm^3 density)

            Now your answer applies where depending on how big a Stephen Colbert design is, it takes more or less of the material: a 1cm^3 Colbert would give you 952 ABS heads or 800 PVA heads. Now THAT'S a lot of Colbert!

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by camperdave (969942)

          My problem with these 3d techs online is that there's no good way to know exactly how much you can DO with a given amount of raw material.

          You don't worry about how many bowls of cereal you can get out of a carton of milk, or how many sandwiches you can make from a jar of marmalade, or how many sheets of paper you can print with a toner cartridge. It all depends on how much product you apply per item. Having said that, a 1kilo spool of ABS filament costs about $40, and a good CAD program will tell you the volume of an object. So, how many Lego pieces (ABS plastic) are there in a kilo?

          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            by argStyopa (232550)

            "You don't worry about how many bowls of cereal you can get out of a carton of milk, or how many sandwiches you can make from a jar of marmalade, or how many sheets of paper you can print with a toner cartridge"

            Well, actually, you DO. That's EXACTLY what you do calculate to determine 'value', it's just that the average consumer knows roughly what those values are intutively, or guesses so from the packaging and experience. For printer cartridges, "pages printed" is actually in fact the primary metric of v

            • by Aladrin (926209)

              Actually, the filament is colored. That's how it 'prints in color' and why it takes 2 heads to print in 2 colors.

              I was asking for more details because the last time I looked into 3D printing, the ABS filament seemed to cost enough that printing things for fun, but screwing up, seemed to be a very costly mistake. The video, however, says it's cheap enough that you won't care.

              Obviously, some of my data is wrong, but I don't know which yet.

              And you're right, I do care how many bowls of cereal I get from a mil

          • About 400. [answers.com]
          • So, how many Lego pieces (ABS plastic) are there in a kilo?

            About 400 [answers.com]

        • by Bob-taro (996889)

          Yes, but how many Stephen Colbert heads do you get per spool?

          My problem with these 3d techs online is that there's no good way to know exactly how much you can DO with a given amount of raw material. At some point, i'm going to have to break down and purchase things, just to get a baseline on cost.

          He claims in the video that the material is so cheap you can just give things to friends and print more, but... Somehow, I doubt it's that cheap.

          The raw material is plastic wire. It is melted and molded, not really "consumed", so I expect you could easily calculate how much plastic a given print will require. The other main resource is electricity, and I think these things output a fairly constant volume / hour, so again, you just need to know the volume.

          • by dbc (135354) on Friday January 13, 2012 @12:51PM (#38687660)

            Yes, exactly. Even the ancient s/w I am running on my Makerbot Cupcake calculates the cc's of material that will be consumed by a print.

            This looks pretty cool, but I see the build envelope is 225mm x 150mm x 150mm ..... I really want 300mm x 150mm..... oh well......

            These are outstandingly good humor -- my daughter draws up toys and doll house furniture and stuff in SolidWorks and prints them. I do robot parts. Great fun.

            • by Aladrin (926209)

              Is there some software I can use without owning a machine, so I can design a few things and find out what they'd cost?

              • by dbc (135354)

                Yes, Skeinforge is open source. The whole tool chain is open source. But really, the cost of the plastic is minimal. And it is easy to estimate by weight, anyway. Go find a pile of Lego or any other plastic stuff that is about the same volume of plastic as the widget you want to make. Weigh it on a postage scale. Look at the cost of a 5 pound spool of the plastic they sell you. Do the math, it is easy. Also, remember that on most prints there is only a solid shell, and the interior is about 10% fill h

        • by Applekid (993327)

          Yes, but how many Stephen Colbert heads do you get per spool?

          My problem with these 3d techs online is that there's no good way to know exactly how much you can DO with a given amount of raw material.

          Untrue.

          First you have a CAD model, which you can calculate worst-case amount of material. Then the model gets sliced so that the printer knows how to draw each layer. Nobody that prints does so with 100% infill, most cross sections are filled with a web of plastic at about 20% - 40%, sometimes even hollow. I like 30% and it's plenty strong: especially with honeycomb fills instead of just straight lines.

          The slicing process is more than just snapping cross-sections but rather describes an entire toolpath (gco

      • by wisebabo (638845)

        Thanks for the info!

    • by PerlJedi (2406408) Works for Slashdot on Friday January 13, 2012 @10:10AM (#38685196) Homepage Journal
      The original V1 Thing-o-Matic costs around $1,100, but I'm guessing V2 will be more expensive than that, among other reasons, because of the dual-extruder.
      Actually, forget the guess, here are some links: http://store.makerbot.com/thing-o-matic-kit-mk7.html [makerbot.com]
      http://store.makerbot.com/makerbot-pva-1kg-spool.html [makerbot.com]
      http://store.makerbot.com/replicator-404.html [makerbot.com]
      If that is just too much, I would recomend finding a local area maker space (as many of them have these, and cost of joining is similar to that of a gym. Here is the one in Michigan I belong to:
      Maker-Works [maker-works.com]
  • by retroworks (652802) on Friday January 13, 2012 @10:14AM (#38685246) Homepage Journal
    I have enough trouble keeping track of the two-dimensional stuff I print. This is something best left cloud-based.
    • by Scutter (18425)

      I have enough trouble keeping track of the two-dimensional stuff I print. This is something best left cloud-based.

      You could use it to print your own 3D clouds.

  • But wait. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 13, 2012 @10:23AM (#38685338)

    Imagine what damage this will do to the industry. Everybody making their own things, nobody buying toys, nobody buying anything. Heavy copyright lawsuits must kick in to prevent this horrible scenario. Every model copyrighted, every 3D printer with online DRM.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by DrXym (126579)

      Imagine what damage this will do to the industry

      Very little at the moment. Makerbot produced parts look like glorified plastic coil pots, are only available in a handful of materials & colours and are not suitable for applications where they may be put under stress. They're fine for the odd job, e.g. you break some widget and have the time & patience to produce a replacement. It's certainly not going be much use for "pirate" toys or any other goods. Probably cost more to produce the copy than it would the original.

      I would see sites like Shapewa

      • oh really? just wait legos will be pirated very quickly i know that if i had a 3d printer i sure would print them. you could also print plastic versions of Erector Set pieces, those were my favourite toys as a kid. and they would be very easily printed and pirated on these devices.

        • by geekoid (135745)

          I would be surprised. LEGO is very high quality, precise measurements, mass produced and hollow.

          I don't think it will be cheap enough to make to warrant making your own bricks. You're own custom bricks then LEGO doesn't sell? sure.

          • The guy who staged out the Bible in Legos would have had an easier time of it for sure:

            http://thebricktestament.com [thebricktestament.com]

            He clearly needed to hax0r a bunch of Legos to tell many of the stories...

          • by dbc (135354)

            Yes. I have a MakerBot Cupcake, and also do injection molding. Lego is extremely precise injection molding. Much more so than typical molded parts, and their molds are very expensive because of that. Super tight tolerance machining and hand polished. There is a reason Lego is expensive. It is the jewelry of injection molding. Now, the new machine MakerBot is talking about here has about 1/2 the layer height of a CupCake, so lets say 8 voxels to each 1 voxel in a CupCake. The resolution is much better

        • by MattskEE (925706)

          just wait legos will be pirated very quickly i know that if i had a 3d printer i sure would print them.

          In order to make lego bricks which both hold together firmly and can be easily pried apart requires precision injection molding http://entertainment.howstuffworks.com/lego1.htm [howstuffworks.com], http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lego#Manufacture [wikipedia.org]. 3D printers don't have the tolerance, material strength, nor finish quality required for producing strong tight-tolerance pieces like this. Printing is just a fundamentally different

      • by dubbreak (623656)
        Shapesways is definitely interesting. A mech friend of mine introduced me to it. He created a hdd sled so you can take your hard drive from your old xbox 360 and drop it in the new gen machine (http://www.shapeways.com/model/402108/ [shapeways.com]). It's priced ~$11. Yes, it could probably be produced in mass quantities for $1 each, but that's after a $8K mold. This type of thing is great for long tail type products, but will kill the profitability in doing it traditionally.
    • Someone did imagine ; The Diamond Age includes this scenario - all the replicators ("matter compilers") are linked to a network and under heavy DRM. The most successful economic groups control the matter supply (ink cartridges / 3D printer spools / tiny nano-legos). The major plot arc surrounds an attempt to obtain a small scale, self-replicating (on the macro-scale, no grey goo) matter processing technology, in preference to the vast, centralised, proprietary matter processors owned by a few powerful group

    • by WhyCause (179039)

      Read "The Diamond Age" by Neal Stephenson for one imagining of this scenario.

    • by tlhIngan (30335)

      Imagine what damage this will do to the industry. Everybody making their own things, nobody buying toys, nobody buying anything. Heavy copyright lawsuits must kick in to prevent this horrible scenario. Every model copyrighted, every 3D printer with online DRM.

      It's already started happening. The DMCA has been used to take down 3D models [arstechnica.com].

      As with music and movie industries, we're going to see this continue to 3D printing as well. It's only just started, since 3D printing is still a relative novelty for most pe

    • by Solandri (704621)

      Heavy copyright lawsuits must kick in to prevent this horrible scenario. Every model copyrighted, every 3D printer with online DRM.

      That's what I've been saying [slashdot.org]. People think all the ruckus about IP laws and copyrights is about books, music, movies, and software. Those are relatively minor compared to what's coming down the road. In the future, when everyone can basically own a fab shop in a box, it's going to be about whether all the physical objects in your house can be created for the cost of material

    • The nice thing about 3D printing technology is that you can now build 3D printers with it. See reprap.org

  • by ackthpt (218170)

    Managed to not tell me anything I'd like to know, availability, how big is it, how much does it cost, what materials and so on. Just hype.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Simon Brooke (45012)

      Managed to not tell me anything I'd like to know, availability, how big is it, how much does it cost, what materials and so on. Just hype.

      This newly fangled Interweb thing has curious devices called 'links [makerbot.com]'. These are often represented by words distinctively coloured or otherwise marked. Your computational engine is most likely provided with a small carriage vulgarly known as a 'mouse'. If you trundle this carriage across the surface of your writing desk, a representation of a hand or arrow or similar pointing device is automatically and synchronously moved across your information display. If you manoeuvre your 'mouse' until this pointer appe

    • by thejaq (2495514)
      It's available (several different models/companies, in kit or prebuilt), they are all on the order of 1 - 1.5 ft^3, cost about $1100, print from corn based PLA, or oil based ABS, and a guy on kick starter just successfully raised close to a million bucks to build a comparable (possibly superior) model for $~500.

      These machines are laying the ground work of distributed manufacturing. Get everyone building trinkets in their home will 1) get people used to the idea 2) build lots of expertise leading to bett
      • Right. The general population barely has the technical ability to turn off their cell phone.

        You're asking them to make something?

      • Except that powdered metal can be used to produce incendiaries and explosives, and so Homeland Security will step right in to save us.

  • This strikes me as the type of development that is better suited for a Hardware store or retail outlet. Why should I make the individual investment when I can just go to Menards with an AutoCAD or Unigraphics file and say, "print me a plastic part" for $2.99 and I'll stop by when its done? That's why you rent tools from the hardware store instead of buying them and letting a bunch of them just take up space. A million individual 3D printers doesn't really make sense.

    • And while I'm thinking about it... The hardware store would probably have to post the "no dildos" rule pretty quick. But I think it is still a valid business strategy.

      • And while I'm thinking about it... The hardware store would probably have to post the "no dildos" rule pretty quick. But I think it is still a valid business strategy.

        And no Steve Jobs dolls, and no naked chick dolls and no Jurassic Park toys and no Happy Meal thingies....

        Get my drift?

    • by Naso540 (2304414)
      I was think this as well - like the key cutting station at all the hardware stores!
    • by WillAdams (45638)

      I'd be glad to have one nearby --- the nearest ``maker'' type shop is over an hour's drive from me.

      Even more interesting would be for the shop to have a 3D scanner which would allow them to scan broken parts, then assemble them on-screen / fill in missing bits and fabricate a replacement on the spot.

    • by OnceWas (187243)

      Why should I make the individual investment when I can just go to Menards with an AutoCAD or Unigraphics file and say, "print me a plastic part" for $2.99 and I'll stop by when its done?

      Few people thought they needed home laser printers at first either. And you can bet that there will be a Kinko's model coming around the bend quite quickly.

  • For me, the technology will be sufficiently advanced when I can use a Makerbot to print the pieces necessary to build a Makerbot.
    • by phooky (645)

      It's been done. [thingiverse.com]

      • it only prints the mechanical parts and none of the electronic parts needed to make a makerbot work ...
      • by Anonymous Coward

        Well, minus the belts, the electronics. the motors, the bearings, the rails, the print head, the fuseor the... Ok; it was able to build the plastic frame, which is still awesome, but still leagues away from actually making the peices required to build itself.

        For that you would need a printer that:

        Can use multiple materials with different properties :
        Ridged and conductive
        ridged and non-conductive
        flexible and elastic
        Extremely ridged and strong
        FPGAs

        It would then either need motors/stepper motors as one of it'

        • I wasn't trying to dampen the mood (much); it just seems to me that every incremental improvement in the technology gets a news post, while for it to be actually useful, it needs to do more than print Legos. I'm saying "Let me know when it can print Mindstorms."
    • While it might not make these things, it can make the jigs or tools to do so if you really want to. My guess is you don't really want to that much :) However, in some parts of the world people will.

  • Embedded Video (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Catskul (323619)

    The front page story style gave no hint that the video was to embedded and that users need to click through to see the video. I checked all three links assuming one of them would link to the video and figured that the posting editor had accidentally omitted it. It was only when I clicked through to see if anyone else was as confused as I was that I saw it was an embedded video.

    The front page style should be changed to allow viewing embedded video from the front page, or at the very least the fact that there

  • I know I saw a news story about this at least a year ago -- thing-o-matic's 3d printer is definitely not a new thing.. Even the idea of it being an affordable option for prototyping has already been in articles for at least a year.
  • It would have been nice to see a close up of the actual printer in the video instead of some guy in the foreground with the printer way in the background!
  • ...is now just a scan away. Anybody have the markup for that?
  • Cubify (Score:5, Informative)

    by TheSync (5291) on Friday January 13, 2012 @02:41PM (#38689420) Journal

    The big story at CES is the debut of Cubify [cubify.com], a $1299 MSRP 3D printer that uses technology similar to the Makerbot, but it is a bit more professionally assembled. It will launch with accepting a USB drive with STL files on it, and may later have WiFi with an open API.

  • I reckon the group most affected by this will be patternmakers. This is already a dying art, now designers can print a pattern directly from their desktop, with shrinkage rates and draft calculated by software. I've worked a bit in a foundry - our guys were more mouldmakers than patternmakers, and the amount of work it takes to make a mould that allows a clean finished part is phenomenal. This technology could take most of their work away - except for the most tedious final polishing.

    We are still a lon

I've got a bad feeling about this.

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