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Kor and his team built the three-wheel, two-passenger vehicle at RedEye, an on-demand 3-D printing facility. The printers he uses create ABS plastic via Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM). The printer sprays molten polymer to build the chassis layer by microscopic layer until it arrives at the complete object. The machines are so automated that the building process they perform is known as “lights out” construction, meaning Kor uploads the design for a bumper, walk away, shut off the lights and leaves. A few hundred hours later, he’s got a bumper. The whole car – which is about 10 feet long – takes about 2,500 hours.
Originally posted by winofiend
Who knows though, it was only 15 years ago that I saw a 3d printer in a cad room at the local tafe.
maybe in 15-20 years time, they'll be as common as lexmark ink jets that you buy and never use.
Our transhumanist overlords will be playing with their atomic scale nanotech printers by then. ABS printers will be a novelty of the past. Again, although this is just the infancy stage, the upside to this tech is enormous.edit on 27-2-2013 by METACOMET because: (no reason given)
Definitely it will not be a one solution for manufacturing. But the principles of it can certainly be applied to certain segments of costly manufacturing processes (provided it becomes cheaper to own and operate a 3D printer in industrial sector). Defense and Aerospace are just two sectors where it can make a significant impact if made viable and economical. Who knows how it will/can impact the Medical industry. Who would have thought that someday privatized space travel rides would become a reality. It has become a reality though expensive at the moment but certainly there are few visionaries (in addition to bored and thrill seeking filthy rich individuals) that will make it happen. Think about Howard Hughes and his expensive prototypes but the Man was a visionary in his own rights.
Originally posted by buddhasystem
There are reasons people use 18 wheelers to haul cargo, and Mini Coopers to do shopping. Theoretically, the roles can be reversed, it's just not going to work very well. So I really doubt that even after considerable progress, the 3D printers will become one solution for every manufacturing problem.
Originally posted by SeekerofTruth101
Today, what you see as 3d printers are merely toys for well heeled hobbyists and corporations, but it is the POSSIBLITIES of marketing the product to the masses that will ensure EVERY human in the least one of such toys
Originally posted by OmegaOwl
Ha, looks like you CAN download a car these days.
Originally posted by maoklein
Not to mention that if we could come up with some even better polymer as the input material, steel could indeed become a thing of the past -- something along the lines of inexpensive carbon fiber...