Earlier this year the designers of the OP-1, Teenage Engineering released the 3D files for accessories for the synthesizer when they could not find an affordable distribution channel for their international community. This was the first time we have seen a manufacturer releasing 3D printable files so that their users could 3D print their accessories, either with a desktop 3D printer or via a 3D printing service such as Shapeways. Now we see Pretty Graffiti may be the first user to carry on the momentum of adding value to the synthesizer, without Teenage Engineering investing in design time or manufacturing.
I am sure this is the very first ripple of a tidal wave of 3D printed products we will see on Shapeways that add value to an existing product with little or no investment by the original manufacturer. When manufacturers do get on board and start making 3D printed parts available we will see the same speed of innovation and product diversity as we already see happening within the Shapeways community.
Who do you think will be the first manufacturers to really take the opportunity and run with it? How can we help them to understand it is in their best interest to start releasing accessories to be 3D printed on demand?
There is little more rewarding then giving a loved one something that you have made especially for them. The value of the item far exceeds the sum of it's parts, as the act of making embeds meaning into the object far beyond a mass produced item, or a unique item you may have chosen from as artist or craftsperson. Your participation in the item adds a level of depth to the story and meaning behind the gift, that simply cannot been bought. The item becomes priceless, not in a Mastercard advertisement kind of way, but the item is embedded with genuine meaning.
Designing a gift using on demand 3D printing with Shapeways may not mean you are hand forging every atom in the item, but the thought and emotion behind your design, the time spent 3D modeling (if you can), along with any post production you do increases the social value of your gift.
There are many beautiful stories in the Shapeways forums of people 3D printing gifts for loved ones. One of the most recent stories to capture our hearts at Shapeways is an age old story:
Boy meets girl
Boy falls in love with girl
Girl mentions she loves a pendant that is no longer for sale (the impossible mission is set)
Boy becomes the hero, locks his mission into his sights and decides he must design, 3D print and assemble the pendant to give to her (in 2012 the hero fabricates the Holy Grail)
Not knowing how to 3D model so well he enlists the help of a designer from the Shapeways forums (cutting the Gordian Knot with a little help from 3D superstar Kevin Wei)
Shapeways 3D prints the design in Sterling Silver and sends it to our hero's door where he then has a crash course in setting jewels as he glues 150 Swarovski Crystals into the pendant
Once complete he packages up the pendant and sends it across the ocean, nervously anticipating how she will receive the gift he has invested with so much time and energy.
Oh well, right now it's being transported...
so I don't know yet whether she likes it. But honestly, when I send it
off... it felt like I was sending a piece of myself... the amount of
work and dedication that goes into making this... really made it the
most special gift I have ever given somebody.
To help you make the most of the current discount on Stainless Steel we wanted to share some of the all time most popular products 3D printed in Stainless Steel. Of course if there is nothing that tickles your fancy you can also (quickly) design your own as long as you get your order in before the December 31st at 04:59 GMT. Enter code jv9dv at checkout where it says "Promo Code" (not "Apply Credit").
3D Printing is not always about the new, sometimes it is about repair the old, like a (very) personal favorite of mine, Repair Part for a Bugaboo.
If you are designing something new to be 3D printed in Stainless Steel, be sure to pay close attention to the design guidelines for stainless steel. A few of the most important things to keep in mind:
Your design must have a minimum thickness of 3mm.
The entire part must be bigger than 3x3x3mm and smaller than 750x381x381mm.
No interlocking or moving parts.
Be sure to follow these rules to avoid the disappointment of having your design rejected due to one of these issues as the discount will not be carried over to reprint or replacements of any rejected parts. The discount does apply to all stainless steel finishes including the Bronze and Gold finishes.
We were happy to have Joshua Harker visit us at the Shapeways HQ in New York City to finally meet after 3D printing SO MANY of his skulls. We took the opportunity to record our part of our conversation about how he used Shapeways 3d printing and Kickstarter to take his career into a new direction, how on demand 3D printing makes it possible for artists and designers to realize their ideas, and how platforms like Shapeways and Kickstarter make it possible to reach a massive audience with no financial investment or risk. In short, 3D printing and the 3rd industrial revolution as celebrated by his latest Kickstarter project, Anatomica di Revolutis.
The full interview runs for around 15 minutes and covers much of Joshua's amazing success over the past 12 months, check it out.
I haven't been able
to find any in stores, and it seems mind-numbingly obvious that this is
what people really want on their tree. A limited time offer, this model
is available THIS YEAR ONLY. A perfect, unique gift for zombie and tech
Digitally sculpted from scratch, this is not a modification of any
Chopper automatically partitions a given 3D model into parts that are small enough to be 3D printed and assembled into the original model.
A recent paper by Linjie Luo, Ilya Baran, Szymon Rusinkiewicz, Wojciech Matusik of Princeton University presented at SIGGRAPH outlined software designed to partition large 3D models into smaller 3D printable ones. Check out the video of the 3D printed parts being assembled, fairly seamless.
3D printing technology is rapidly maturing and becoming ubiquitous. One of the remaining obstacles to wide-scale adoption is that the object to be printed must fit into the working volume of the 3D printer. We propose a framework, called Chopper, to decompose a large 3D object into smaller parts so that each part fits into the printing volume. These parts can then be assembled to form the original object. We formulate a number of desirable criteria for the partition, including assemblability, having few components, unobtrusiveness of the seams, and structural soundness. Chopper optimizes these criteria and generates a partition either automatically or with user guidance. Our prototype outputs the final decomposed parts with customized connectors on the interfaces. We demonstrate the effectiveness of Chopper on a variety of non-trivial real-world objects.
This is a great step forward for desktop 3D printers that sometimes have a relatively small build area. We do not see too many projects that are too large to be printed in Shapeways 3D printers other than the occasional architectural model.
Would you use this tool if it were made available?
As 2012 comes to a close it is time to look forward to 2013 and what exciting new things we can do at Shapeways. One thing we really love is to experiment with 3D printing new materials and post processing. What would YOU like to see us introduce next year?
Should we look at new colors or new finishes, new metals or new ceramics, different plastics or something completely new like 3D printing wax? We have a few ideas and have been experimenting behind the scenes but would love to know what you would like to see next and why. We will read EVERY comment and investigate what is possible. So, what is it going to be???
This weeks Designer Spotlight focuses on Justin Howlett, an animator who uses the 3D modeling skills he learned through animation to create steampunk inspired rings.
Tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? Where are you located?
Hi my name is Justin Howlett, I am 24 years old and I have lived in London for about a year. I studied animation at Bournemouth University where I used my computer model making skills to make 3D sets and props for animation productions that we would put on as students. After leaving university and now working as a freelancer I continue to develop my practice.
What's the story behind your designs? What inspires you?
I've been working on my ring project for the last few months. Much like the steampunk aesthetic, I really like to imagine my rings as something someone from the future might wear or something you might find that was once lost in the ground centuries ago. I have always been interested in ancient Egypt and especially the pyramids and I often have this in mind when I start a design. I like to use triangles or other simple forms as a starting point for the shapes in my designs. Sometimes me and my girlfriend Jess brainstorm ideas together which can lead to interesting results!
What brought you to 3D printing with Shapeways?
I was asked to design some 1/24th scale props for a stop motion short film, and we chose to 3D print them. Shapeways stood out as the most feasible and convenient place to produce them. Shapeways has plenty of materials and a boasts a good detail resolution which appealed to us as the props would be viewed close up and a good level of detail was very important. When I discovered people's Shapeways shops and their designs I decided to give it a go myself. Holding my computer designed models, as real objects in the real world felt amazing, and now I'm hooked!
How did you learn how to design in 3D?
When I was 12 I bought a game and it came with an editor which lets you create maps for the game. Later on taught myself to use 3D modeling programs like Maya and 3D Max.
How do you promote your work?
I have recently used Pinterest and Twitter to get more exposure for my shop. My website is where I keep my portfolio of work and a link to my Shapeways shop, but I am new to this and I'm still figuring out the best way to do it.
Who are your favorite designers or artists?
I love the graphic design work of chrislabrooy it's amazing that his pictures aren't real! HR Giger and MC Escher have always inspired me too.
Who in the Shapeways community has served as an inspiration to you?
I love the skull rings hdrop has made, his designs are fantastic. I like the dark nature of them and how the skulls form seamlessly into the ring shape . I especially like the 'masked skull ring'. Other designers that I admire are: kacheric, sbruins, jeff. I also love the impossible triangle pendants by SB3D, Eragatory and The Museum of Small Things.
If you weren't limited by current technologies, what would you want to make using 3D printing?
I can't wait until I can print larger 3D printed interlocking parts in metal and silver.