When it comes to 3D printing, many people still rely on printing objects which have been designed by others. Let’s face it, not all of us have the skill level or talent needed to create our own 3D printable products from scratch. This is why websites such as Thingiverse, MyMiniFactory, 3DShare, Pinshape and YouMagine have become so popular. However, while these sites are great for individuals who are looking to print designs created by others, it has been exceptionally difficult for designers of these products to actually earn revenue for the time they spend modeling their designs.
That is why Andrew Karas has launched a new type of 3D printing design repository, called Trinpy, aimed at appeasing both individuals looking to download unique high-quality designs, and the designers who create them.
Earlier this month, we reported on Karas, and his unique stop motion video that he created featuring a 3D printed mountain bike. That bike is one of the many unique objects available at launch on his new website.
Trinpy differs from the other 3D printing repositories in one major way: they pay royalties to designers. The way the system works is that anyone can register for free, and download up to 4 designs per month. However, subscriptions are also available for individuals who would like to download more than this amount. There is a $39.99/3 month option (special price of $19.99 for the month of July) to have permission to download 12 designs per month or an unlimited plan for just $119.99/year ($39.99 special price for July).
Of this revenue generated by Trinpy, royalties are accrued and paid out to designers who have their designs downloaded. Anyone can become a designer on the service and upload their own models. Royalties are then paid depending on the popularity of the models they uploaded. For example, if there has been $4,000 in revenue generated by Trinpy for a given period, and one designer has had their designs account for 10% of the total downloads on the site, they would be entitled to royalties of $200-$400 plus an additional “quality bonus.” At the same time, designers always maintain 100% rights to their designs, and those downloading the designs only have the right to print them for their own use, not distribute, modify or resell the design or printed objects.
“I came up with the idea for this website because there were some really great models out there on other websites, but I either could only buy the physical object or pay a high cost to download the design,” Andrew Karas, founder of Trinpy, tells 3DPrint.com. “So I thought that there must be a better way to get great models cheaper and reward the designer more. With this model, if everyone pays a small amount (at the moment it is less than a roll of filament), then the designers who produce the best and most popular designs will get more reward for their work and will be encouraged to keep uploading their best designs. So the best designers get great rewards and the community wins because we have great quality models to download and print for free or at a low cost.”
For those designers out there, this is the perfect time to start uploading your models, as Trinpy is offering 100% of revenue plus an additional $2,000 in royalties for designs downloaded between July 1 and the end of August. This is when the first royalty payments will commence, and then they will be made every two months thereafter.
“Our mission is to enable designers to be able to make enough money from designing for 3D printing that they can quit their day jobs and provide great quality models at a low cost to people with 3D printers,” Karas explained.
It seems as though Trinpy has a very unique and potentially prosperous business plan, one which benefits the 3D printing community as a whole. What do you think of their method of paying royalties for designs? Is this a business model that will work? Discuss in the Trinpy forum thread on 3DPB.com.