Our newest CORE’nthian, Jesse DePinto of 3D Creations, shares his thoughts on 3D Printing making its way into our everyday lives.
Affordable 3D Printing: Coming to a Desktop Near You
When will 3D printers be used for the home? Short answer: they already are! Desktop 3D printing is a trend that is becoming part of our home lives. 3D printers are machines that can create an infinite number of plastic objects out of thin air. The possibilities for 3D printing at home are endless.
Imagine that you come home from work and your wife says she broke the vacuum cleaner attachment, and she wants your help finding a new one online. You bought the vacuum at a thrift store, and product line was discontinued years ago. Fortunately, the part is easy enough to design using free CAD software, and you whip up a new part within an hour, for free! Now your daughter complains that her older brother broke her doll’s chair. No problem, you find a free 3D model online that you instantly create on your desktop 3D printer. Happy kids, happy wife, happy life.
Early adopters of desktop 3D printers include hobbyists and entrepreneurs. Inventors are using desktop 3D printers to prototype their new design, and even manufacture small batches of their invention. Hobbyists are replicating damaged car parts and creating novel attachments never commercialized before.
This technology is also secretly creeping into our culture:
Obama addressed additive manufacturing in his State of the Union address
Nike created Kobe Bryant in 3D in their shoe commercial
Howard and Raj made action figures of themselves with a 3D printer in Big Bang Theory
In fact, 3 specialty brick-and-mortar shops opened in 2012, where they sell 3D printers and 3D printed objects to consumers and businesses. This may come as a surprise, but Milwaukee is home to the very first 3D printing retail store, my retail store called 3D Creations. We opened in August 2012 in the Grand Avenue Mall, and have since then moved into a co-working space in the fifth ward, near downtown Milwaukee. Along with selling 3D printers under $3,000, our company also offer consulting, training and services to product development companies in Southeastern Wisconsin.
We also organize a local monthly meetup, where we show and tell, build, fix and improve our home-built 3D printers. The group is open to the public, and consists of over 70 local enthusiasts, professionals and evangelists of desktop 3D printing technology. If you’re interested in getting involved and having fun, check out the links below to get started!
Where to learn about 3D printing… www.meetup.com/3dpmke/
Where to buy 3D printed prototypes… http://core-usa.com/rapid-prototyping/