AMS Spring 2023

High School Student Creates a 3D Printable (Barack) Obama-Llama

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obamallamafeatured‘House’ rhymes with ‘mouse’, ‘car’ rhymes with ‘bar’, and ‘Obama’ rhymes with ‘llama’. That’s right, and actually I’m not the first person in the world to realize this. In fact, the word “ObamaLlama” is in the Urban Dictionary, and reads as follows:

“Someone who is inordinately emotionally affected by every word spoken by the ‘Obamessiah’. A derivation on the popular term ‘sheeple’, meaining one who blindly follows a political hero.”

While, the inventor of this term probably is not a supporter of President Barack Obama, the term has been used by others who are significant backers of the current President of the United States. A website, called…. you guessed it… ObamaLlama.org, is an organization which sells stuffed ObamaLlama animals for $19.95.

Birchard's Obama Llama

Birchard’s Obama Llama

The name calling and the stuffed animal really aren’t anything new when it comes to politics.  Mockery and creative campaigning have forever been a part of the political system.   For one high school student named Nate Birchard though, he has designed his very own “Obama Llama”, and the best part is that he had previously never heard of the term before. Birchard’s design isn’t a stuffed animal, nor is it a pseudo-derogatory name aimed at insulting followers of the president. Instead his design is for a 3D printable one-of-a-kind creature, also called the ‘Obama Llama’.

“The idea came to me while I was going though a stint of making 3D puns on the names of various presidents and world leaders,” Birchard tells 3DPrint.com. “I had made ones based on Romney and Lenin, and Barack’s last name lends itself well to wordplay — I have a terrible penchant for puns.”

Using models of both a llama and President Barack Obama that he found on Thingiverse, he set out to create his very own Obama Llama. The end results, as Birchard sums it up, is a creation with the following characteristics:

“A medium-sized mammal native to Peru, the Obama Llama subsists on a herbivorous diet, climbing high mountain slopes to graze on fresh Barackoli plants.”

obamallama2In order to make this unique design, Birchard used Meshmixer, which is a free Autodesk program. He cut the neck and shoulders off of the Obama model, and the face off of the llama. He then pasted the two together and sculpted the new model in order to ensure that it was smooth enough for 3D printing.

“My model was received fairly well on Thingiverse,” Birchard tells us. “User anode505 even suggested that I add a bell to make it and ‘Obama Llama Ding-Dong’!”

Birchard, who is a Junior in high school, also happens to be the lead designer for his school’s FIRST Robotics team. His team, SWAG 4060, won the Engineering Inspiration award for the Pacific Northwest region and recently had the opportunity to compete at the world championships. He first became interested in 3D printing when his school got a Makergear M2 3D printer from a grant they received last year.

As for whether or not Birchard is a supporter of Barack Obama, he tells us that even though he can’t yet vote, he usually favors the Democratic ticket.

What do you think about the 3D printable Obama Llama? Discuss in the Obama Llama forum thread on 3DPB.com.

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