This week news covers a broad spectrum that includes thoughts about 3D printing’s role in our future, to new services, hardware, materials, and competitions to win a printer and get your business funded. Also, we cover two inspiring medical applications of 3D printing used by people who suffer different conditions. On the business side of things, Trinckle 3D continues to cultivate the business community with new services, Adobe purchased Mixamo, a 3D character design company which it will merge with Photoshop, and a new South African pellet extruder promises to help you avoid some of the limits of printing with filament. We begin with 3D printing’s more certain role in our not so certain future…
Panel Predicts 3D Printing’s Future
This week’s news we didn’t cover begins not with this past week, but with the 3D printed future. A panel of UK experts — including Rhys Morgan, Director of Engineering and Education at the Royal Academy of Engineering in London, urbanist Linda Aitken, and architects Arthur Mamou-Mani and Toby Burgess –recently presented its idea about how off the shelf 3D printed houses, temporary stackable housing pods, and underwater cities will help alleviate overpopulation and inner city housing shortages. The panel also predicted buildings with their own microclimates, cities built in the skies, and generally more vertically built structures with 3D printing playing an important role. While we may not know what the future holds, there will likely be 3D printing involved: it’s what the experts are predicting!
You Can Now Purchase Used 3D Printers on UZATA.com
Since climate change and industrial waste continue to pose environmental hazards, it’s good news that there’s now a new service to help us re-use machines. 3D printing innovation moves fast, as so, people are stuck about what to do with old printers being replaced by newer and newer machines. Worry no more. A new service to make it easier to get rid of used industrial 3D printers has emerged to handle this growing problem. UZATA.com offers a catalog of 3D printers, culled mostly from eBay, offering a user-friendly platform. Developed by Polish entrepreneur, Mirek Jaskulowski, the site compiles 3D printers being sold on the web into one easy and informative website. Prices are included, and all of the other facts you need to know about a printer before purchasing. The site is also being improved although its brand new this week, and the goal is to make it easy to expunge used 3D printers while also recycling machines that are still functional– avoiding more industrial waste in the process.
Student Builds Machine Expressing His Tourette’s Syndrome
3D printing has all kinds of useful, interesting, and even artistic medical-related applications, as you are already well aware. For example, an art project called “Echo of Motion” is not just a machine but a way for someone with Tourette’s Syndrome to express their own experience of the condition artistically. Made from wood dowels, laser-cut plywood, balls, gear motors, cables, nuts and bolts, and, of course, 3D printed components, its creator Andrew Frueh says he made the 3D printed parts on a homemade printer, and he used Inkscape, OpenSCAD and Blender to design everything.
Echo of Motion was part of Ohio State University’s MFA thesis show, “Mirage and the Rainbow” at OSU Urban Art Space in 2014, and as Frueh explained he developed the machine to communicate his experience of his own condition in an artistic and technologically sophisticated manner. This incredible machine is just another example of the amazing ways people use 3D printing to aid self-expression in the Arts!
MatterHacker Customizes Devices for Disabled Customer
Another story about a woman with a disabling condition using 3D printing involves Brandy Lee Scott’s limited use of her hands due to her Duputrens Contracture syndrome. The syndrome causes her hands to ball up into fists, making it challenging to perform daily tasks. Thankfully, Scott met Mara, from Orange County’s MatterHackers, who noted her condition was needing customized objects and decided to introduce her to 3D design and printing so she could help make exactly what she needed — with the MatterHackers expertise guiding her, of course. After designing and printing a very useful cup holder, the next project was a contraption she could use to swipe her credit card at a gas station. Dave, from MatterHackers, decided to use CAD software to make a type of forceps to assist Scott in various situations, and these were then 3D printed. Customization has allowed for her to continue to improve and even decorate these devices, and this story provides yet another great example of 3D printing’s common and extremely useful health-related applications.
Win a 3D Printer With XYZPrinting’s Facebook Video Contest
With all of the great success stories this week about 3D printing’s future applications to alleviate effects of climate change and overpopulation, and its current medical/ health applications helping people design innovative devices and machines to alleviate or artistically express medical conditions, wouldn’t it be great to get more 3D printers near designers at an earlier age? Well, Taiwan’s XYZprinting provides such a chance for some lucky classroom with a contest that allows entrants to win a 3D printer for their school. Simply create a short 30 second – 1 minute long video that describes why your school needs a da Vinci Jr. 1.0. 3D printer. Entrants can also get people to vote for their video, and they also must “Like” the XYZprinting page on Facebook to participate. Easy enough! The more people who get exposed to 3D printing at a young age, the more innovation we will see in this uncertain future that certainly includes 3D printing!
Additive Manufacturing Competition, AMPED, Launched
There’s another competition that yields an award far greater than a 3D printer for a classroom. The Youngstown Business Incubator (YBI) and America Makes (National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute) have launch a $100k technology startup competition (with $50,000 in-kind professional services) for additive manufacturers called AMPED. To participate, you need to be either a student, tech innovator, entrepreneur (or all three) that can bring a successful business idea with technical sophistication to fruition in the marketplace.
Starting July 1, the first round of the competition will be the submission of business concepts. YBI will then invite up to seven finalists to present their ideas to a Youngstown judges’ panel on November 2, 2015. The winners, and there can be more than one winner qualifying for funding, will join YBI to see their ideas implemented. You can find out more on how to participate in the competition here.
Trinkle 3D Develops Platform for Businesses
In more business news, Trinckle 3D is an emerging company with a business plan to go after the business side of the 3D printing industry and it looks as if its succeeding with many news service ideas and products. Trinkle 3D first made product development an easier process that also allowed it to cut the prices of services by about 85%. Then, by focusing primarily on white nylon (PA12) laser sintering, which might be the one commonly used material and process, it created the MeltWerk online service platform to upload models and get them 3D printed. Now it also offers an integrated system so that businesses can use online tools for immediate customization and cloud tools for model handling. Finally: it uses a network of partners to deliver SLS 3D printed items directly to companies and customers, making it highly competitive in the entrepreneurial and business side of the 3D printing tech sector.
Mixamo Acquired by Adobe for New 3D Design Possibilities
In more business news for 3D designers, San Francisco-based Mixamo, who specializes in 3D designed animations and characters, has been bought by Adobe — which will result in integrating Mixamo’s 3D technology into Adobe Photoshop. This merging will allow designers to animate and manipulate 3D content, and there will also be made available thousands of 3D models. Mixamo has a library of stock characters that can be used in projects. This is good news for the growing arena of 3D character design possibilities, while also improving 3D design tools in general for greater and easier use via Adobe’s established technology.
New Pellet Extruder from Fouche3DPrinting
Finally, the South Africa-based company, Fouche3DPrinting, has launched a new Walltruder 8 Pellet Extruder that can be used as an add-on feature for FFF/FDM 3D printers. The extruder’s use of pellets is almost 75% cheaper than filament, which will also expand how many people can get inovolved in 3D printing. Pellets can save money, are more flexible, can avoid breaking like PLA filament often does, reduce stock material and avoid moisture damage — according to the company. Other features, like the interchangeable 8 nozzles on the extruder, can be found on the company website for those interested in furthering their use of pellets as an alternative to more costly, and sometimes cumbersome, filament. You can read about the extruder on Facebook here.
That’s this week’s stories we didn’t cover! Let us know your thoughts on any of them at the 3D Printing News We’ve Missed forum thread on 3DPB.com