Most of the world is very excited about learning how to 3D print. With the enormous and far-reaching benefits being offered through this technology, there are an infinite number of reasons why so many people around the world would want to try their hand at it. But whether you are just opening the box to that shiny new 3D printer in your living room, or are a teacher unpacking one or multiple machines in your lab, it might be a little more complicated than you think if you aren’t educated up front.
While there are many hackers and tinkerers out there who can build their own 3D printers from top to bottom without any directions or advice (and maybe they were involved in the design for yours!), most of us need some guidance. Up until now, there has not been a lot of education on the subject and it’s been a stumbling block for many in the home and in school. Often it is a process of the blind leading the blind, learning by trial and error–and experiencing some frustration along the way.
i3D Club is changing that process, and their free video series, 3D Crash Course, meant to offer a primer in 3D printing, may very well become the ‘go to’ for learning how to get started in digital design and 3D printing.
Developed with Pinshape, 3D Hubs and The WTFFF Podcast, the ‘crash course’ is presented in a visual format, offering concise information for beginners, and it’s so entertaining, in whiteboard animation style, that you may want to watch even if you don’t have a 3D printer–or as a review even if you aren’t a novice.
“Our goal at i3D Club is to create the most effective learning experience possible when getting started with 3D design and 3D printing,” says John Bokla, CEO of i3D Club. “The collaborative efforts between Pinshape, WTFFF Podcast and 3D Hubs bringing this platform to life has been a great experience. The result is a roadmap for people new to 3D printing outlining the crucial components they need to know when getting started. All of it will be released for free to anyone, anywhere, forever.”
In addition to the overview, the four videos cover:
- Exactly What is 3D Printing?
- Three Crucial Steps to 3D Printing
- Future Influence of 3D Printing
- Designing Your First 3D Print
The overview lets you in on what you can expect in the four videos to get you started on 3D printing and makes sure new users know that even if they don’t have a 3D printer, they can learn how to download files and use a 3D printing service bureau and have desired models shipped right to the doorstep.
“With so many new people exploring 3D printing, we need to ensure that everyone has access to content that makes 3D Printing as easy as possible,” said CEO of Pinshape, Lucas Matheson. “Pinshape is a very collaborative community, and we’re excited to share these videos and help foster a culture of learning.”
As the videos progress, users basically learn the elementary ropes from A to Z, and are given an opportunity to understand the comprehensive definition of 3D printing. An entire family can learn together–or a whole classroom can–regarding what the 3D printer is and how we actually make it work, getting involved and progressing seamlessly–to learning about areas like the software which opens up the world of digital design. The videos are put together in a smart and engaging fashion, inviting involvement from the user who is able to experience fun from the beginning in passing through the novice phase of 3D printing.
“We learned from listeners of the WTFFF?! Podcast that learning 3D design is one of the most difficult areas to navigate when diving into 3D Printing,” said Tracy Hazzard, co-host of the WTFFF?! 3D Printing Podcast. “Programs need to be age appropriate and still comprehensive. i3D Club has all of that, plus it’s fun. We started our six-year old on the beta program and she keeps begging us to let her spend more time on it.”
While a user-friendly platform is offered for all ages, it’s also important to note that the series gives a full education on the history of 3D printing, the current state of the industry as well as price levels for printers, trends, materials, and more. Understanding how the process works from FDM to SLA is key to a beginning education, as well as understanding all the basic parts of the different types of hardware from the gantry system to the extruder and build plate.
They offer the basic steps from information on digital design to the initial 3D file and getting it printed by whichever process you may choose. Users can also look forward to information on what to expect in terms of prices for printers, filament and more, along with how to get started in experimentation with 3D printing before you even go to buy a printer.
Overall, this free educational system offers one of the greatest examples of how the 3D printing community works together in sharing so that everyone can learn to innovate, improve on one another’s open-source designs, and enjoy all the benefits that this amazing technology offers from expanded creativity to customization, and from self-sustainability to affordability. Have you tried out 3DCC yet? Let us know your thoughts in the 3D Crash Course forum thread on 3DPB.com.