Apple products have a great friend in 3D printing. Whenever a new Apple product is released 3D designers are right there, making accessories to augment or complement the product. Examples of these kinds of designs can be found on many of the 3D model marketplace sites, including i.materialise. And for this reason alone, hosting an Apple Accessory 3D Printing Challenge, and partnering with Rhino design software to do it, sounds like a really good idea.
Mounts, covers, docks, and stands for your iPad, iPod, iPhone, Apple Watches or Mac Books, is what we are talking about here. And as far as the contest rules go for submissions, the sky’s the limit. You can submit either functional or decorative items, so long as you follow contest rules. First, the winner will be selected according to uploaded 3D renders. Designers, either amateurs or professionals, have until December 20, 2015, to submit entries. i.materialise asks that all participants take a look at this Polyamide page to learn about designing with nylon plastic.
Other details to keep in mind as you plan your incredible designs is that 3D models can only have a “maximum bounding box volume of 450cm³ or 450,000mm³.” You also have to explain what special color and finish your model would have. Is it be polished/unpolished? It can be dyed in 7 colors or have a velvet finish in 8 colors — see here for more details.
There is no limit on the number of submissions you can enter. In order to enter, all you have to do is upload your designs, provide descriptions of them in the description box, and make sure you include quality screenshots of your design. You submissions will be disqualified if you forget to include screenshots.
Many 3D designers are usually in it for the sake of good design, but there are some excellent prizes you can win here by participating. 3rd place will receive a €50 voucher from i.materialise, 2nd place is a €100 voucher. And if you are the lucky 1st place winner you will receive a €200 voucher. All winners will also receive a complimentary print of their gadgets.
Doesn’t sound so tough, does it? In just a brief perusal of the 3D models for Apple on the i.materialise site, I found iPhone cases in Voronoi and Tree of Life patterns, and bumpers and docks too. For the iPad, I found an iPad smart case holder. I can only imagine what I would find if I looked at other 3D model websites. The point is the ideas are already out there and there are already people designing nifty upgrading gadgets for Apple products, so why not take your chances and come up with some new designs?
Again, you have until December 20, 2015 at 10:59:59 PM UTC to submit your designs on the i.materialise challenge page. Will you be taking part in this competition? Let us know in the Apple 3D Printing Challenge forum thread on 3DPB.com.