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AMS Spring 2023

Backface 3D Printing Wins Guinness World Record with Gigantic Replica of Jon Bentley

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UntitledAs the Guinness World Book of Records began to get more and more out there over the years with the business of breaking records, for the average layperson it began to seem as if we might run out of some of the more slightly conventional things to do like dancing until we dropped, 1950s style, or growing the world’s biggest cow on our Midwestern farm.

Never fear though, as in numerous other sectors–3D printing has come to the rescue offering up a whole new lifetime of options for record breaking. This technology is a great example of how a new science garnering mainstream attention can lead to a whole new world of records just waiting to be thought up and then broken, from 3D printed robots solving the Rubik’s cube at lightning speed to incredible new gadgets like GoPro camera holders helping those who are competing to break records—and yes, there’s plenty more all this came from, as you can probably guess.

oneWhat you may not have counted on, however, was a ginormous human statue who really doesn’t have to do much of anything in taking the next record. Created by a 3D printing company headquartered in the UK, Backface, the statue stands 2.05 meters tall, which translates to approximately 6.72 feet. This human ‘specimen’ was 3D scanned using using Backface’s 96 DSLR camera rig. Their subject? The Channel Five Gadget presenter Jon Bentley! This show, already known for being a lot of fun, should indeed be airing a great episode today.

“The record attempt was already a challenge but attempting to print something this size on a full color 3D printer made the achievement even more exciting!” said Tim Milward from Backface.

The statue is actually, no surprise, larger than Jon Bently—by twelve percent. It took the team over an entire month to complete, and was 3D printed using a 3D Systems ProJet 660 printer. The materials used to make the giant human replica are certainly those that most of us don’t consider every day, in the form of British gypsum and CMYK inks. In printing the piece, a whopping 50,000 layers were applied overall, and each one is about the thickness of a human hair. The statue was printed hollow, with a 2.5 – 3mm wall thickness, weighing around 15kg.

The Gadget Show is also no stranger to 3D printing as they previously enjoyed a segment where Amy Williams, 2010 gold medal winner for skeleton racing, had a pair of 3D printed shoes made for her by designer Julian Hakes. This upcoming TV event will be ‘officially adjudicated’ by Guinness World Records, and should certainly be a boon to Backface. The Birmingham-based startup is known for bringing creative ideas to life, but this certainly takes their motto to a whole new level with 3D scanning, printing, and goals in record breaking. How amazing it must have been for them to use this formative new technology and then actually be able to ‘make it one for the history books.’

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I really can’t make up my mind though between gasping at the size and realism of the 3D print or having a giggle at how comical ‘he’ appears, hanging out with the group. Congratulations to all involved for using the tools of the new 3D world for making history with innovation, creativity, and humor. We’ll look forward to checking out the show—and reporting further as someone undoubtedly will see this accomplishment as a record that needs further breaking—putting a 3D printer even further to the test, for sure. Discuss in the 3D Printed Guinness World Replica forum over at 3DPB.com.

[All images supplied to 3DPrint.com from Backface.]

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