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 Post subject: The Future of 3D Printing
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 2:39 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 6:46 pm
Location: Evanston, IL
Hey twisty puzzlers,

You might be interested to read this whitepaper on the future of 3D printing, which a bunch of 3D printing companies such as Shapeways and MakerBot sent to policy-makers in Washington, to attempt to work out the legislative issues that will arise from the predicted widespread use of 3D printing.

I couldn't love the title more. ... crew-it-up


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 Post subject: Re: The Future of 3D Printing
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 6:07 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 15, 2009 12:00 am
Location: Jarrow, England
Interesting read which makes many valid points. However, if history teaches us anything about these issues, it is that the lawmakers, backed or lobbied by rich and powerful "rights holders", will push through ill-conceived laws which only advantage them in the short term, without regard to loss of benefits to society as a whole.

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 Post subject: Re: The Future of 3D Printing
PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2012 5:05 pm 

Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 4:30 pm
The ''conclusion'' of the article really sums up the issue nicely. Being a Makerbot Replicator owner myself I can say that it is not difficult to change things up enough to slip past the letter of the law. As a matter of fact, given the current state of the hobbyist grade 3d machines it's hard to exactly duplicate both form and function together. Primarily do to the nature of layer printing. Yet one can make small changes to help in functionality. But matching the material type and strength resolution of a Shapeway's product is a ways away for a hobby grade machine.

I will say that the build quality of a well tuned machine (bot) and a well sliced item is surprisingly good. I build parts like brackets, gears, levers, etc. every day and it still blows me away hold good it is.

Could I build a replacement cubie for a 3x3? Sure, easy.
Could I print a core for a 3x3? Maybe but I wouldn't trust it structurally.
Could I build a stand for a 3x3, or a case for it with any feature physically feasible? No problem and it would turn out as good or better than a typical commercially made injection molded ABS part.
Could I make lots of money doing production on one bot? Never, printing a coffee mug takes 3-4 hours.
Could design input, (copy then adapt to layer building) obsolete parts and make a little side cash? Sure can and it depends on how good one is with cAD and understand their bot.

I believe we have a long ways to go before parts replacement or disposable use items are made on a turn-key kiosk or home machine. I also believe the title of the article is so true on so many levels and areas it's almost a definition of a Casandra effect on a social level.


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