It is pretty amazing how widespread the talk is now around 3D printing, especially when they really have toiled away in relative obscurity in the past. I think your comments around the pricey ink bring up a real issue (and potential problem) with 3D printing becoming more accessible. The materials to "print" parts or prototype products is expensive and the actual maintenance and upkeep of these printers is actually pretty involved. It's not like an office printer that you can pretty much put on auto pilot with semi-regular upkeep. These printers involve a lot more care and tending, particularly if they're used to products parts and products that require any kind of realistic tolerances.
Ann, I've done that, going to the store multiple times..but I usually keep everything I get thinking I'll need it eventually. I like the idea of making what you need right at home with NO trip to the store. I'm kinda in the boonies as well. 10 bucks in gas or in ink? least for the ink you get exactly what you want, maybe even something that isn't made....yet
My inventory is always growing. It's an entire room of my house now. I can't seem to get myself to throw anything away. Plus, I like to have a large inventory of parts to choose from. It's always nice when I am working on something and I'm like...oh I need a "whatever" and I can just go grab one off the shelf! I'm always afraid that if I throw something out that eventually I'll be...oh yeah, I had a bunch of those, but I threw them away! argh!
I also found that to be very very funny. I've been talking about those 3D printers for the last month or so and they seem to be almost everywhere now, but I never thought I would see that. I mean, I just never imagined it would show up in my life like that. I also don't really understand why they would have sold that ink in the first place. It is possible that someone was picking things up for auction and they just thought it was regular ink by mistake and threw it in. It was labeled as "ink", well sort-of. It was labeled "solid-ink". Afterall, my friend thought it was just "ink"...lol
I have a friend I go to for many of my pc needs. He gets bulk hardware from this auction house. Well, the other day I went over to pick up a "new" laptop for myself and he was showing me some of his recent buys. He resells most of his stuff on ebay. Anyways, he was amazed that he was selling this "ink" for so much money. So I inquired as to what kind of ink this was. It turned out to be for 3d printers. He had no idea what that even was! :) Too bad he didn't have a printer to go with the ink. I would have bought that for sure!
That reminds me, we have to reorganize all that extra hardware in the garage this summer, an annual project. Once in awhile we find a use for an odd part, but it does seem like the inventory just keeps growing.
A lot of trips and a lot of extra hardware hanging around the house that you never end up returning and then have to eat the cost. Small dollars, but they can add up. 3D printed parts would be much kinder on the household repair budget.
Or when you or your husband have to go to the hardware store multiple times to get the right part, because you have to bring it home, try it out and see if it works or not, and if not bring it back and repeat the cycle. If you live out in the boonies like I do, that's a lot of trips. I like Chuck's idea, too, for car parts at the local garage.
Definitely Cadman-LT. Automotive, simple household hardware items, boat parts, appliances, the list is endless. How annoying is it when the appliance guy comes to the house (sorry Made by Monkeys readers who fix stuff on their own) and they just need one simple part for your fix and they don't have it. One, sometimes two visits later (because they got the wrong part), your appliance is fixed, but you've been without it for weeks. Imagine if they could download a simple CAD part file and print the part right in their repair truck. Beautiful!
I agree. I could see rather than having everything in stock you would only need to have the CAD/CAM programs from the manufacturer and make as needed. That could extend to so many other industries as well.
Altair has released an update of its HyperWorks computer-aided engineering simulation suite that includes new features focusing on four key areas of product design: performance optimization, lightweight design, lead-time reduction, and new technologies.
At IMTS last week, Stratasys introduced two new multi-materials PolyJet 3D printers, plus a new UV-resistant material for its FDM production 3D printers. They can be used in making jigs and fixtures, as well as prototypes and small runs of production parts.
In a line of ultra-futuristic projects, DARPA is developing a brain microchip that will help heal the bodies and minds of soldiers. A final product is far off, but preliminary chips are already being tested.
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