There’s no doubt about it, kids these days really seem to enjoy 3D printing. Lots of new 3D printers on the market are kid-friendly and pretty easy to use, like the Yeehaw. Some companies, like China-based Qingdao Unique Products, are even making it possible for kids to build their own 3D printers with the help of a kit. 10-year-old Calramon Mabalot built his own 3D printer when he was only eight years old, in just four days, using a Printrbot kit! He is, unofficially, the youngest person in the world to build a 3D printer, and according to his Twitter page, the 3D printing experimenter is “answering questions no one is asking.” This incredible and inspiring kid creator is currently at the Inside 3D Printing San Diego Conference & Expo.
He is visiting the conference on the medical track. Earlier this month, he had the chance to meet Dr. Carberry and Dr. Hedge with San Diego’s Rady Children’s Hospital, and check out their 3D printed heart models, which will be used for both study and planning. They are also at the conference this week, and Calramon was able to meet up with them again.
Calramon and his brother Calexis have their own 3D printing business in San Diego, called Brother Robot. The pair have been 3D printing professionally since 2015, and keep busy filling custom orders for their customers, as well as experimenting with their own new designs. They have completed many jobs for people, who order from their very own 3D Hub. Of course, this is the only 3D Hub owned and operated by a 10-year-old! Some of the things Calramon 3D designs and prints include robot and quadcopter parts, replacement and repair parts, and 3D selfies; you can also find some of his designs on Thingiverse.
One of the other things Calramon is experienced in 3D printing are prosthetics. San Diego teacher Nick Sissakis, who was born without his right hand, took his students to the San Diego Public Library and happened upon its Innovation Lab. He met Calramon there that same day. The young 3D printing whiz 3D scanned both of Sissakis’ arms, and custom fit a Flexy-Hand 2 design for the teacher! He explained that he resized the Flexy Hand 2 to fit Sissakis’ hand, and strung it with prosthetic tendons. The prosthetic hand cost $189, but Calramon gave it to Sissakis free of charge, as part of the e-NABLE network’s “Enabling the Future” movement.
He said, in a Mashable video, “3D printing is not hard, it is art. And art takes a lot of time…a LOT of time!”
He’s sure got that right!
Calramon is busy tweeting up a storm about all sorts of interesting things at Inside 3D Printing San Diego! It looks like he had the opportunity to check out Uformia’s new “The Nature Game,” which is inspired by Alan Turing’s 1950 Turing Test and challenges participants to create objects that are difficult to determine if they were created by natural growth, or by human 3D design. He also attended a presentation from Pasadena-based Metamason. 3DPrint.com also has an exhibit at the conference, as we are a proud media partner of this event. Check here to learn more about the conference, and be sure to follow all of the events on Twitter using #I3DPConf.