New Year Brings 3D Printing Opportunities
Like ourselves, you are most likely always searching for new opportunities that will improve your life and the life of people you care about. You may be motivated by the enjoyment of a new opportunity, the monetary benefit, the learning experience, or even more likely, a combination of the three. The personal 3D Printing revolution is rapidly changing communities and businesses. Part of what makes 3D Printing so special is that it can benefit everyone no matter their age or background. Large corporations such as AVIO AERO, a subsidiary of General Electric, are using 3D Printing to improve advanced technology’s and to manufacture critical components faster, better, and cheaper. Small business are improving their communities by offering 3D Printing and supporting services enabling anyone to Prototype of create finished products locally. In our local area Mind Gear Labs has programs for children and adults to learn and bring their imagination to life.
Families are being forever changed and are being made able to afford things that were an incredible cost before. Emma is a little girl who was born without use of her arms. At two years old she still wasn’t able to hold toys, crayons, and other objects that children enjoy. There were already devices available that would help Emma lead a normal life but most insurances do not pay for those types of prosthetic equipment and the one Emma required cost over $80,000 USD! When Emma’s parents found out about 3D Printing they reached out and was connected with the Nemours Hospital For Children who custom-fitted an exoskeleton for Emma using a Stratasys 3D Printer. Nemours created Emma’s custom prosthetic for under $1000 USD! Emma affectionately calls her exoskeleton her “Magic Arms”. You can see more of Emma’s story here.
Everyday the list of schools that are not only adding a 3D Printer to their list of classroom equipment but adding 3D Printing as an actual subject continues to grow. Students benefit greatly from a 3D Printer in the classroom as these devices touch on many subject areas all at once in a very engaging way. Students are able to explore engineering principles, architecture and design, electronics, chemistry, mathematics, robotics, and many other underlying principles for a budding engineer, architect, designer…; the applications are endless. The FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) is now offering an award for innovation in 3D Printing for High School students. You can learn more about the FRC here.
More Affordable Than Ever Before
3D Printing has been in use in most of its forms for about 20 years now. For most of that time only wealthy entrepreneurs and businesses could afford a 3D Printer. Before now most 3D Printers were also not practical for the regular user due to their size, complexity, and cost to maintain. With the rise of the Crowdfunding movement more and more small operations and individuals are able to offer 3D Printers that most can afford. 3D Printing is benefiting greatly from the Open Source Initiative in which technology is freely shared and improved upon by many to make 3D Printers less expensive, higher quality, and easier to use. Where just a few years ago even a basic 3D Printer cost thousands of dollars you can find some now for a few hundred dollars. You can find a list of personal 3D Printers under $500 USD here!
Everyone Has Something To Offer
We’re sure you have had ideas, whether they were a mechanical invention or a fashion item, that you swept to the back of your mind because you think to yourself that you’ll never be able to pursue that idea. There a few worse feelings than a dream forgotten or one never pursued. You may not get the result you were looking for but it’s better than no result at all. 3D Printing gives “the little guy”, the ability to test and manufacture his or her own objects. Things for the home, office, our outdoors; things that are purely creative or things that improve society, whether the one in your home, your community, or the world at large. One of those people is Luc Nikiema. Luc and his team are revolutionizing personal 3D Printer kits by offering the first 3D Printer that simply snaps together rather than requiring soldering (electronics welding), screwing, drilling, and other actions that often discourage those new to 3D Printers from exploring the joys of assembling their own. Find out more about Luc and his innovative SNAP 3D Printer here.
Express Your Creativity
Express your creativity; everyone sees the world in a unique way, especially when it comes to art. There are even 3D Printers that work with metal that are now consumer affordable. Individuals and businesses can test their ideas modeling them out of various metals. Some are even creating ready-to-sell pieces of jewelry. The Mini Metal Maker team provides a 3D Printer that can fashion objects out of Gold, Silver, Copper, and other metals. Instead of $10, 000 you can experiment and create objects out of metal with the Mini Metal Maker which costs $1000 or less! If you are excited by the idea of designing your own jewelry but aren’t sure you would be able to use design software to do so, there are services, such as Makoo Jewels, that make it easy for you. Makoo Jewels software designs unique pieces of jewelry for you using your vocal patterns!