There’s nothing more satisfying for a true sports fan than seeing your favorite athlete or team succeed. Rewatching game-changing plays can help you relive that thrilling, adrenaline-infused, buzzer-beating final play when fate stepped in and handed your team a victory or even a championship. For fans of cricket — the sport that the British took to the far reaches of the empire and which remains extremely popular in Britain, of course, but also Australia, Southern Africa, the West Indies, and on the Indian subcontinent — preserving those memorable moments is now going to be as simple as clicking a mouse a few times.
Singapore-based start-up iPlay4Keeps has created Cricket Miniatures, 3D printed action figures that cricket fans can purchase through the company’s website. iPlay4Keeps launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund their fledgling business. The miniatures, which are 90 to 100 mm (3 ½” to just under 4”) tall, are digitally modeled using SketchUp, with each figure in a sports-action pose:
- Batsman: Maxima, Straight Drive, Pull, Square Cut, Hook, Cover Drive, Runner
- Bowler: Fast Bowler, Spinner Action, Howz-That, Malinga-Style
- Wicket Keeper: Standard Pose, Catch, Run Out Action
The figurines are available in a variety of colors, so regardless of your team loyalties, iPlay4Keeps will have the capacity to fill your order. Because of copyright prohibitions, specific teams and logos cannot be represented — but team colors can. Customers can elect to received white plastic or full-color sandstone figurines. The white miniatures are 3D printed, says the iPlay4Keeps creative team, “with an SLS (selective laser sintering) process that uses a laser to fuse together nylon powder.” As a result, the material is strong and flexible. The color miniatures, produced on 3D Systems’ Z-Corp 3D printers, explains the creative team, are the result of a process where binding material and colored ink are applied “layer-by-layer into a bed of gypsum-based powder.” Colors and textures are uploaded along with the file of the model.
The company suggests using the 3D printed figures as World Cup souvenirs, tournament trophies, or even simply as collectibles — or all of the above. For those fans who prefer to do the 3D printing and embellishing of the individual, mini-statues themselves, there’s the “DIY digital file” option to download the .stl files for a fee.
Contributors to iPlay4Keeps’ fundraising campaign have the option of donating at various levels to receive rewards. For a $10 AUD backing, you can receive a “fully editable 3D printable .stl file,” which you can print at home or upload to an online 3D printing service. Continuing up the scale, more generous funders can choose from the solid white or full-colored figures and get the following: a single player collectible ($50 AUD), a rival playoff collectible ($75 AUD — created by combining two different players from opposing teams), or, at the top of the funding reward list (at $125 AUD), a custom miniature trophy.
The company plans to use the money they raise to develop new poses, cover the cost of 3D printing, coloring and texturing, and shipping costs. The Kickstarter campaign is in its early days, with 25 more to go to get to the $1,000 AUD mark before the campaign ends on March 15th.
They also aspire to create an app that allows buyers to customize and preview the 3D models before ordering — that’s at their stretch goal, if funding rises to $5,000 AUD.
Let us know if cricket strikes your fancy in the 3D Printed Miniatures for Cricket Fans forum thread over at 3DPB.com.
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