While some of you were stunned by the fact that earlier today it was reported that popular rapper, songwriter, and entrepreneur will.i.am made a comment that he believes eventually human beings will be 3D printed, one man was aiding in the evolution of 3D printing.
For one man named, Theo Jansen, 3D printing has become a way in which he can create creatures which are referred to as ‘Strandbeests’. Strandbeests have been around for a couple years now, and they are actually real moving, living creatures — at least that’s what Jansen will lead you to believe with his cleverly thought out Youtube videos.
We first reported on these ‘creatures’ back in January of 2014, at a time when their were four known species available:
- Animaris Geneticus Gracilis
- Animaris Geneticus Larva
- Animaris Geneticus Ondularis
- Animaris Geneticus Parvus
However, just like in nature, 3D printed creatures tend to evolve as well, at least in the marvelously unique and perhaps borderline insane mind of Theo Jansen. Today sees evidence of this evolution with the birth of yet another Strandbeest, the Animaris Geneticus Bellus.
“The 3D printed Strandbeests continue to evolve and adapt to their environment,” Jansen writes. “The latest generation, Animaris Geneticus Bellus, has grown more elegant and efficient. It features optimized joints and slimmer legs resulting in a smooth walking motion. And thanks to its compact size it thrives in residential environments, walking along tables and flaunting on bookshelves. The mechanism is 3D printed completely assembled, and will work without further assembly right after birth from the printer.”
As for how this new creature gets around, it requires either human touch, or a propulsion propeller (sold separately) which allows for wind to power its movement.
No matter how insane Jansen may seem in some of his videos, in actuality he is quite the brilliant man. His Strandbeests are uniquely designed in such a way that when they are placed on certain surfaces, and pushed gently, their legs move in a fashion quite unique to only themselves.
When the propeller is added, these Strandbeests are able to be powered by wind, thus appearing as though they are crawling along the ground under their own power. The propeller is very easy to add on, and you can see the instructions below.
This new Animaris Geneticus Bellus is now available to purchase from Shapeways for just $121. Printed in ‘White Strong & Flexible’ nylon plastic, it measures 3.795″ w x 3.015″ d x 4.828″ h in dimensions. The propeller is an additional $37.
What do you think about these latest 3D printed creatures. Have you purchased one? Discuss in the Strandbeests forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out the video of the Animaris Geneticus Bellus below.