The Shapeways Blog: 3D Printing News & Innovation

Shapeways Blog


Searching for Superman or Superwoman to Lead the "Factory of the Future"


Comments

Display comments as (Linear | Threaded)

Hiya,

Re: 'How do we produce, sort, and ship thousands of unique items in different materials to customers all over the world on a daily basis?'

Simple extension of what you already do:

- Print your own envelopes (small items)
- Make and print your own boxes to the item size (larger items)
- Vaccum form the wrapper over the item and drop into package (alternately: Print the 'wrapper' as an extension of the item, cocoon-like)
- Pour in printed styrofoam
- Barcode ID for addressee/destination, linked to delivery service to print appropriate postage

Cheers,

Luis.
#1 Luis on 2012-02-09 14:28 (Reply)
Packaging definitely needs to be improved, especially when multiple fragile items are shipped together:

http://www.shapeways.com/forum/index.php?t=msg&th=7484&start=0&

I don't think 3D printed shipping materials can compete price-wise with traditional materials (today;-).
#2 GWMT on 2012-02-09 18:00 (Reply)
Hiya,

That's why I was wondering if a cocoon-like layer, printed at the same time would cope with this. Although that might be an issue depending on the material, it could just be printed in the cheapest plastic, regardless of what the original print was in. This would then become the 'box' that gets posted out.
The nice thing is that, if the digital (multi-material) printers were used, then this would automagically generate a cheap 'packaging' box AND print the address label at the same time... :-)

If not, and they went into a traditional box, then printing thin 'bubbles' could make the printed packaging materials cheaper (on a material/volume basis) in time... ;-)
Just have a cheap/older printer churning out bubbles that pour out onto the conveyor with open boxes...

Cheers,

Luis.
#2.1 Luis on 2012-02-10 11:30 (Reply)
My (rejected) idea is to put mushroom spores into each box that grow to protect the parts during transit.

AND you could eat them
or use as compost.
#3 Duann on 2012-02-10 18:47 (Reply)
Interesting!

Maybe a sturdier solution would be to use the fast growing Bamboo you see in many home decor shops. Have these grown to the shape of a box...

Cheers,

Luis.
#4 Luis on 2012-02-13 15:05 (Reply)

Add Comment



Enclosing asterisks marks text as bold (*word*), underscore are made via _word_.
Standard emoticons like :-) and ;-) are converted to images.

To prevent automated Bots from commentspamming, please enter the string you see in the image below in the appropriate input box. Your comment will only be submitted if the strings match. Please ensure that your browser supports and accepts cookies, or your comment cannot be verified correctly.
CAPTCHA

  
  
The Shapeways Blog: 3D Printing News & Innovation

Learn More »