We’ve begun to see more and more 3D printing-based stores opening up all around the globe. With the increasing awareness of this technology comes a desire by those interested in it to see first hand what makes the future so incredibly bright for design, manufacturing, and rapid prototyping. It seems as though it was only a few months ago that we were discussing when we’d begin to see 3D print-shops open their doors to customers. Within this short amount of time, we have seen dozens of shop owners ‘cut the red tape’ and showcase 3D printing to their communities.
When opening a store, no matter what it sells, any good businessman or woman would look at the potential market, the demand for their products within a given radius of their desired location, and try to determine when the right time to enter the market may be. We have seen many successful 3D printing shops open their doors in the past year, many with plenty of success. However, there are many shops that give it a try but for one reason or another, simply can’t make it work.
For three entrepreneurs, Jerry Spessard, Chris Hill, and Jim Buchanan, now seems to be the perfect time to enter realm of 3D printing, through the opening of a shop and studio called 3-D Print Factory, in Hagerstown, Maryland. These men realize that they must come up with interactive, entertaining, and interesting ways to attract customers to their storefront, in order to succeed in this market.
“We currently have the capability to print with every technology offered by 3D Systems,” Jim Buchanan tells 3DPrint.com. “We are an authorized 3D Systems Reseller, offering custom prototyping services and reverse engineering services. Our current retail location is specializing in custom 3D Christmas ornaments for the holiday season, custom figurines (personalized, sports, etc), and any other printable file.”
The customization aspects of 3D printing are what attract people to this technology and ultimately to stores like 3-D Print Factory, which opened its doors this past Saturday, November 1 at the Valley Mall in Hagerstown, Maryland. This isn’t all for these men though.
“We have partnered with a number of scanning companies around the US and Canada to provide printing services,” says Buchanan.
It will be interesting to see if competition heats up in surrounding areas. We are always on the lookout for newly opened stores. What do you think? Will 3-D Print Factory succeed in helping bring 3D printing technology to mainstream consumers? Discuss in the 3-D Print Factory forum thread on 3DPB.com.