Despite how it sounds, 3D printing babies is not a euphemism, but something that you can actually do now. Granted, your 3D printed baby won’t be able to grow up or talk or eventually resettle you into a poorly run retirement community, but you also won’t have to change 3D printed diapers.
3D designer and artist Jasmine Robinson likes tiny, articulated babies (I’m not judging) and has been creating them for years,as Christmas ornaments, as gifts for baby showers, or as warnings for amorous teenagers. I may have made that last one up, but I think it’s a viable idea. Robinson also created Charlie, the 3D printed articulated dog we covered recently.
Robinson initially sculpted her tiny tots out of polymer clay, which tended to be prohibitively time consuming. But after getting her first 3D printer last year she knew that she would start 3D printing her hyper realistic jointed figures. Not only would it be significantly less labor intensive, but she would be able to easily make and sell copies of her sculpts.
After searching for 3D printable jointed baby models online she decided that she would need to make the model herself. She taught herself how to 3D model, and also hired experienced 3D modelers to work on her design. By combining their designs and her own tweaks, she came up with Jasper.
Here is some video of Jasper’s range of movement:
“I have had mixed reactions to my babies. Some Ooooo and Awwwweee. They love the detail and want to hold it. Others have told me that they are worried it may stab them with a sewing needle and maybe it would be less disturbing if I made some clothes for it,” said Robinson.
The first Jasper, Jasper 1.0 if you will, is a fully articulated miniature baby doll that consists of 22 individually 3D printed parts. The parts are strung together with a thin cord fed through each piece, and once assembled he will be about 4.5 inches tall. After experimenting for months with designing a new version of Jasper that could print in a single piece, she eventually ended up with Jasper 2.0.
The new Jasper is completely articulated with movable, print-in-place ball socket joints and will 3D print as a single piece with the exception of the head. Jasper’s head is removable, so you can switch him from his happy face, to his sad face, to his crying like a baby face. Robinson even created a sleeping face, so you can taunt your friends who have real babies with your child that never cries. And then you can toss your 3D printed baby back in your purse for the rest of the night and ignore it, because that’s why you have fake babies instead of real babies.
Both versions of Jasper took Robinson about 5 hours to print, however there is naturally going to be quite a bit of post processing needed on a model like this. The baby will require support structures, and depending on your 3D printer you may have to smooth Jasper out with sandpaper or a Dremel. And as if little Jasper staring at you with his dead, lifeless eyes wasn’t creepy enough, now picture taking a Dremel to him and then try and get yourself a good night’s sleep tonight.
The second Jasper model is in the final stages of prototyping, but he has printed successfully for Robinson on her home UP! 3D printer and she is simply waiting to get her final prototype print back before she uploads the STL files to Shapeways. She is also working on reducing the amount of infill in the swappable baby heads to reduce the use of filament and the cost of having them printed.
If you decide to 3D print yourself a few Jasper babies to fool around with, make sure that you keep track of your baby parts. Robinson warns that there is no better way to scare off a date that leaving a bucket of 3D printed baby parts laying around. Where would you hide your bucket of baby parts? Tell us all about it over on the 3D Printed Articulated Miniature Baby forum on 3DPB.com.