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3D printers?

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posted on Feb, 9 2004 @ 07:32 PM
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i just got linked to this site with an animation of a 3D printer at work. this thing quickly manufatures any one peice object, from what i gather. if it works as wlell as they say, it would be welll worth the $40,000 to a wide variety of industries. takes a long time to load, but worth it.

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posted on Feb, 9 2004 @ 07:58 PM
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you know.....it's a great way to lose business when the website in question takes an hour to load.. but.. being a printing manager myself I will persist and report an "experts view" when I get the chance...

Personally I think this is a rich man's toy with not alot of market potential.

Chris



posted on Feb, 9 2004 @ 08:22 PM
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I agree. It can only make simple objects. No electronics or anything. What use would it have in the home but taking up space and costing lots of money wheras you could go the store and buy something cheaper.



posted on Feb, 9 2004 @ 08:25 PM
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Im still loading the preview.................................

Deep



posted on Feb, 9 2004 @ 08:25 PM
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Ok so what I got out of that useless little demo is that it can print moulds for casting....and expensive 3d play toys.

WE have an engraver here that is laser derived. It cuts into wood and stone.... There fore it can do exactly the same thing as this 3d printer BUT for a fraction of the price, and on a huge variety of substrates..The machine costs a fraction of the printer price too ($15k Aus.).

As I said in previous posts....A rich man's play toy with limited market potential.

Chris



posted on Feb, 9 2004 @ 08:29 PM
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yeah, that really is horrible...



posted on Feb, 9 2004 @ 08:46 PM
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sorry. i dont work in any manufaturing field, but it seemed like a useful tool for mass producing pieces of machinery to me. id be like having one machine that could individually produce every non-moving part of a product instead of a different machine for each part.

i guess i dont have a good eye for useful technology

[Edited on 2-9-2004 by dunkleskates]



posted on Feb, 10 2004 @ 08:37 PM
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You want something with Market Potential then you get this.




The JV3 is a wide format digital machine that utilises solvent inkjet technology...

I can print anyhting from posters to banners and stickers...

And it's only 30grand US....

Now that's a printer.

Chris



posted on Feb, 10 2004 @ 10:34 PM
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How the printer works is that there is a small 'sprayer' bar that moves back and forth like your printer cartridge carrier does, but also moves up a bit with each pass. In the box that it moves through there is a substrate material (I believe it is white or a creme color). In each pass it distributes a bit of solvent glue where it should be, kinda like your printer does (print a color page and look really closely... you see all the dots? That is one dot printed by the ink cartridge. These dots are layered to make different colors, or a certain amount of blue dots are layed out, then one red, more blues, another red, etc to achieve the desired color). Once it is done 'printing' you have a big SOLID (glued together) chunk of the substrate material in the shape of whatever you wanted!

The use for these printers aren't for manufacture, but rather for prototyping intricate, or otherwise unmachinable parts fairly quickly. After you print one part or the different parts, you can use these to make a mold. The advantage is that you won't have to machine a new part when it starts losing specific tolerances from continuously making molds off of it. As well, you can take a prototype idea straight from your computer to an actual part for show without having to go through elaborate and costly procedures.

There are other uses, yes... but the substrate is just a form of plastic and is otherwise unuseable as a finished product. When you figure in the cost of having someone take an idea that you have done on your computer, specifically machine it, and everything else, the $40k seems like a penny in a potful. Believe me... these would/are useful in such buisiness as engineering, automotive design, etc.

I remember reading about these printers about 4 or 5 years ago... they are nothing new, but everyone has such high expectations of them that they haven't really caught on. People think it's like Star-Trek or something and think these will make you a metal gear or a freakin edible hotdog. Either way, they are still freakin kewl!



posted on Feb, 10 2004 @ 10:47 PM
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these printers can do stuff that nice laser cutter won't... it can make inside dimensions! I know what you're talking about, and those are such kewl 'toys'! (yes, I mean toys... I am graphic artist... we have a kickass CNC engraver that can do 3D, and I consider it a toy... basically like your Tonka Toys when you were a kid, but a whole helluva lot more expensive, and more fun lol!)

This printer can easily reproduce a skull that has been scanned from inside the ground (can't remember the process they use... ?) so that you have the exact replica without having to disturb anyone's burial. There's another application for you... I'm sure your laser cutter will do the same, but it cannot reproduce the inside of the cranial cavity without having to do multiple pieces.

If I think of any other applications, I will post. I'm willing to bet these things are gonna be almost as invaluable as duct tape in the future.

One more thing... these printers are only about the size of your typical Xerox machine, and are virtually safe, as long as you aren't sniffing the 'glue', whereas your laser cutter... well, I'm sure almost everyone is aware of the radiation hazards of laser systems in general. Just read all the warning stickers on your machine. Also, the material you cut has to be shipped in specific sizes, and the substrate for the 3D printer can simply be shipped in bags and bottles. Not putting your laser down by any means... I really wish I had access to one myself. I think they are by far better than using cutter bits (which lose tolerance as they wear down... by the end of a project, your final cuts can be up to a couple thousandths off simply from cutter wear).



posted on Feb, 11 2004 @ 12:30 PM
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ES is correct -- they're excellent for prototyping and have been featured on several technology tv shows. One use was to prototype a kind of electronic flash diverter (for photographers) to solve some of the lighting problems of professional photographers.



posted on Feb, 11 2004 @ 12:35 PM
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I believe my local college uses these printers, the design students use them to create scale models/prototypes for their design projects etc (the example I saw was of a concept car design being created)

Quite a nice little toy if you can afford it!



posted on Feb, 11 2004 @ 12:38 PM
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I have seen something similiar before. Its useful if you need to do a quick form fit model, and in the medical field, you can also use it as well in developing replacement bones or even hips. Again, it depends how well you can capture what you want done.

For quick protoype modeling yes, I can see a use, product development and the like. For home use? Nope.. don't see it.



posted on Feb, 11 2004 @ 04:38 PM
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Obviously an indespensible product for the right industry. The ability to quickly and accurately prototype objects with little labour cost is of great value to a lot of industries. I can see this device being used for simple integrated circuit design too, which it would be ideal for I think.



posted on Feb, 11 2004 @ 05:04 PM
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these have bin around for a while, the science section of the new york times did bit on them early last year, i think. really nothin special yet, just simple models, like a cup or something, but the technology is young. give it some time, and this could easily speed up the process of building anything, even for household uses, such as school projects. the only problem is the classic 'oh yay we can have a machine buil dour prototypes for half the fee! you! hey you! yeah, you're fired!'

but, we'll cross that bridge when we get there.




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