Yes, in many product development arenas, using 3D printing to make quick prototypes is quite common. This is especially effective on concurrent engineering teams where quick feedback and multiple design iterations can be used to rapidly get to market.
Very cool mrdon - I just put your book on "the list" for our family to get in the near future. Isn't it great to work with your spouse on projects?! When things aren't working I always blame the HW and Phil always blames the SW LOL. Off topic for this forum but relates to our discussion since we are both authors - I am literally just putting the finishing touches on this website for a book I have written: www.love2christ.com I couldn't have done it without the support of my husband. Best wishes on your book sales and future projects!
Very good point. Software can be tricky and I never take it for granted that its easy to use.If you do run into a challenge with a 3D printer project, I believe the support from the Maker Community and Makerbot will alleviate some of the stress.
Its nice you and your husband work on tech projects together. The DIY electronics tech books I've written and are writing today my wife provides editing and tech support on assembly of the electronic projects. Here's my latest book for building cool electronic gadgets using the Arduino.
Not to be skeptical mrdon, but every time my husband tries to rope me in on a project (we sometimes do projects together - he does most of the HW and I do most of the SW) he always comes in with the idea that the programming won't be difficult for the same reasons you mentioned. I guess what is "difficult" is all in your perspective!
I agree. The article was very interesting. The solutions that 3D printers are solving are mind boggling and shows the spirit of human innovation at its finest. The video of the 3D printed rocket engine was very impressive. I believe using a 3D printer is not difficult because of the machine's ease of use, the online support from folks like Makerbot, and the free CAD software and files being shared by the online community of Makers. Nice article Cabe!
Fascinating article, Cabe - thanks for the peek at some amazing technology. Both applications are so exciting and the possibilities are mind boggling. How cool it would be to prototype designs digitally - just print it out! I see a lot of articles about 3D printing on here but have never seen a 3D printer myself - how accessible is it becoming for the average engineer and what skill sets are needed to utilize one?
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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