It’s really amazing how 3D printing is becoming a technology that is used across all fields of research and all forms of manufacturing, and by hobbyists from all walks of life. We’ve seen the technology used to create things as big as a house, to objects that can only be seen under a microscope. Each and every day we discover new uses for this up-and-coming technology that just a few years ago only a small percentage of people had heard of.
In the past couple years alone, 3D printing has begun to make its way into the aerospace industry. Boeing, as well as other companies, is using the technology to build airplane parts, and within a few years we may even see the first entirely 3D printed airplane fuselage go to use.
One company is using 3D printing to create airplane parts of another kind. Alex Breitkreutz, and his company, IFlyTailies.com, have been in the business of selling parts for RC airplanes for quite some time now. Recently, however, Breitkreutz decided to begin utilizing some of his design skills, in combination with 3D printers, to create custom, one-of-a-kind RC airplane parts.
“I offer scale accessories for RC model airplanes and helicopters,” Breitkreutz tells 3DPrint.com. “Unless the products are individual items, I mostly offer products that require a mix of manufacturing techniques. 3D printing has helped me [in] creating a lot more detail in a much shorter time. As a basic rule, you can say that most of the items that stand up from the panel, [that we offer], have been 3D printed.”
3D printing gives Breitkreutz the ability to create parts on a one-to-one basis if he wants, as well as to completely customize pieces for individual customers. Of the photos you see in this article, Breitkreutz tells us that all of the switches, knobs, levers, buttons, imitation lights, control sticks, seat frames, and ignition switches have been 3D printed. 3D printing allows for him to create “almost any cockpit accessory with stunning detail.”
IFlyTailies currently offers 3D printing of objects smaller than or equal to 12″ X 12″ X 18″(H), and their services are offered individually or as a complete package. The company also ships their products worldwide.
We have really begun to see 3D printing become quite popular for RC hobbyists. We’ve seen projects such as the OpenRC Project and OpenRailway Project take hold, allowing for 3D printed RC cars and model trains to be created through this relatively new method of fabrication. Now with more and more hobbyists within the RC airplane market taking note, and companies like Breitkreutz’s beginning to utilize 3D printing, it should be interesting to see how much of an influx into the RC Airplane market 3D printing will make in 2015.
What do you think about these incredibly detailed scaled down cockpit models that Breitkreutz offers, thanks to 3D printing? Discuss in the 3D Printed RC Airplane Parts forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out some more photos below.