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3D Printing for Prototypes and Instant Manufactured Objects

3D Printing Enables Prototypes and Finished Products to be Quickly and Easily Produced 'On Demand'

There are many applications for 3D printing: jewellery, industrial design, architecture, engineering,, automotive, aerospace, dental and medical industries, to mention a few.

"... To visualize how 3D printing works, consider a coffee cup. If you were to slice the coffee cup into wafer-thin layer like you would meat on a slicing machine at a Deli and save each layer and then re-stack them in order, you would re-create the shape of the original object. 3D printing accomplishes this by deposition of very thin layers on top of each other from sliced 3D models or CAD data within a computer system...."

Direct Digital Manufacturing is An Aspect of 3D Printing Where Instead of Being Just a Prototype, the end result is the Manufactured Object Itself

Direct digital manufacturing "... sometimes called rapid, direct, instant, or on-demand manufacturing, is a manufacturing process which creates physical parts directly from 3D CAD files or data using computer-controlled additive fabrication techniques without human intervention, also called 3D printing or rapid prototyping. When a small low cost device is used it is also called desktop, or personal manufacturing. The primary distinction between the use of other terms to describe 3D printing is that additive freeform fabrication is solely intended to describe a 3D printed part that is to be used as the final product with minimal post-processing. Whereas other terms used to describe rapid prototyping, additive freeform fabrication and the like are simply alternative ways of describing the 3D printing process itself..."


Open Source 3D Printer You Can Build Yourself is an 'open source 3D printer' which makes almost anything up to 4" x 4" x 6". "... Build your own MakerBot and it makes things for you. MakerBots print with ABS plastic. It's your own little factory...."

MakerBot The 3D Printing Robot
"Our goal is to make manufacturing for the masses... for people's desk tops. This is a Guttenberg press for 3D printing."

MakerBot Presentation at Google Tech Talks

Community for Sharing Digital Designs for 3D Printers and Other Digital Manufacturing Equipment

Thingiverse ".... is a place for you to share your digital designs with the world. We believe that just as computing shifted away from the mainframe into the personal computer that you use today, digital fabrication will share the same path. Infact, it is already happening: laser cutters, cnc machines, 3D printers, and even automated paper cutters are all getting cheaper by the day. These machines are useful for a huge variety of things, but you need to supply them with a digital design in order to get anything useful out of them. We're hoping that together we can create a community of people who create and share designs freely, so that all can benefit from them...."


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