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back to article Steve Bong's 3D printing special Xmas showcase

2012 has been the year of 3D printing. It's what happens "when DIY meets Web 2.0", says Chris Anderson - and it's going to be the next industrial revolution - the biggest disruption since the last big disruption, only bigger. We're as amazed as you are by the quality of today's additive printing technologies. So here's a …

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Fimo

Fimo/Sculpy for Geeks?

Industrial quality 3D printing is useful for prototypes. It can be useful at home maybe for the sort of person that has a computer controlled Mill.

I think Steve is right, that the "impact" is somewhat hyped. I have seen good 3D printed stuff.

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Re: Fimo

looks like some left over uncooked pastry from someone mince pies to me...

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Re: Fimo

>Industrial quality 3D printing is useful for prototypes

And sometimes for end-use parts, too. Choosing between any manufacturing processes usually depends on how many you want to make.

Generally, aerospace and some high-end motorsport parts aren't made in large quantities, so are a candidate for 'additive manufacturing'. With processes such as Selective Laser Sintering (for materials including titanium), you can make parts with 'property gradients', should you choose.

I agree though- there is a lot of hype. How many people do you know own a 'Dremel' -like tool? A few, maybe, but not household. I can't think of a 'killer application' that would require everyone to own a 3D printer, though the wider availability of 3D scanning (or its pseudo cousin: clever software tricks on a series of 2D photos) by 'Kinect'-like devices might open it up to a wider group of people.

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Re: Fimo

Andrew, the last time I came across some uncooked pastry, it was trimmings from a pie my brother was making.

I managed to form the letters T, N, C and U, and arrange them creatively on the surface of said pie.

To say he was impressed when he removed it from the oven would be an understatement.

Steven R

(I would supply a pic of said pie, but I suspect it would fall foul of the house rules)

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Re: Fimo

Dave 126: "How many people do you know own a 'Dremel' -like tool?"

I found your post sensible, but I don't think this is a valid comparison. I know dozens of people who own rotary tools (Dremel or other brands) - I have three of them myself. They're cheap and useful in a wide range of applications, in construction and machining and craft-making. 3D printers are considerably more expensive and, I'd argue, actually more limited in the breadth of household activities they lend themselves to.

In many kinds of craft-making, for example, much of the interest is in taking found materials and/or purchased components and working them to figure out how they can be assembled. Making parts to order removes the element of discovery and the pleasure of working under the constraints of the components.

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They look like 3D printings of original models that were playdough, chewed by a four year old, then swallowed, then regurgitated, then stamped into submission by a really angry two year old during a tantrum.

If you're going to make a 3D duplicate, the original should be made of Plasticine, it's a little more oily, and so holds up better after being thrown up. It doesn't taste as nice, but in this case, modelling capability is more important.

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WTF?

Either that or just eat more bran, this white turds would have more figure that way.

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Until it can print a Dominos order I'm not interested.

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I'd rather eat a polylactide replica of a pizza.

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Anonymous Coward

Of course it can print an embossed or even braille Dominos order. I'd question why you would want one though, given the difficulty in getting a slab of plastic to Dominos and the simplicity of ordering online.

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Pint

Do you mean the email confirmation of your Dominos pizza order, or the cold, inedible, circular piece of shit in a box someone turns up at your front door with 2-hours later?

Beer, because you'd have to be pissed to even consider ordering a Dominos pizza.

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Trollface

lol <insert alternate pizza delivery franchise here> fanboi

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Coat

As soon as it can print one Domino to order it can also print the other twenty seven (it should be fairly trivial to write software to handle the dot combinations). The printer won't be arrange them in a neat line ready for toppling, however you can easily build your own Lego robot to do that.

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I can oly assume

that "Bong" was what he used before publishing this!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I can oly assume

The quality of 3D printing demonstrated here certainly looks like it's been modelled or viewed after doing a few bongs.

I've seen miles better 3D models from a home built printer.

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Facepalm

Tap, tap... Er hello?

This is late December and not (very) early April isn't it?

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Paris Hilton

Re: Tap, tap... Er hello?

Who knows nowadays?

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Re: Tap, tap... Er hello?

How can we tell, we're beyond the end of the Mayan calendar. It could well be yesterday tomorrow.

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Facepalm

Re: Tap, tap... Er hello?

Oh please no! One Christmas Day is quite enough.

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Pint

3D printer - cool

Connect a meat blender to it and I could make really good burgers! Does it work like that? Merry xmas etc

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A narrow escape for us all!

That wingnut shows all too clearly the peril awaiting us! If you look closely you'll see it is conventionally threaded, but as we all know the right-hand-slap rule for magnetic fields shows that reverse threading is required to avoid your tokomak spontaneously dismantling. With his refreshing enthusiasm for the future Mr Bong sees a people empowered to make things but here I can only see their imperillificationness to make mistakes!

I can think of no reasonable alternative for the gummint but the immediate formation of HM Printer Inspectorate. They'll need to be added to the RIPA snoop list immediately, even if that means delaying access for traffic wardens. Because the UK is a peace-loving society tasers should suffice, but that aspect should really be left to ministerial discretion: the defense of democracy is far too important to be left in the hands of parliament! Though I hesitate to usurp the prerogatives of the new Minister for Goodprint (Theresa May) might I hope that her first act is to commission a suitable mission statement from Bong! Ventures?

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Made me giggle

Not exactly hard hitting journalism but made me giggle, thank you. This is why theregister is where I go for technical news, it has a wild and teasing side, not one big love in from non technical journalists who can't appraise the news objectively with an eye to making you smile and question.

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Windows

Me thinks short bread dough.....

And a little extra work with a butter knife to indent the lines etc....

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Happy

New!

HP Skips Printer- from BongFoods

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Anonymous Coward

Hold the Front Page!

Kids drawings are shite. Kids 3D models are shite too —shocker

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Trollface

Bastards!

I pissed myself laughing. I'm glad someone is showing the true promise of this great advancement in our western technological prowess and demonstrating how it is sure to liberate the common man from the slavery of purchasing unbaked bread products.

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Genuine photographs?

Agreed, there's a lot of hype, but are these really genuine photographs from the publications mentioned?

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No it's Bong

Bong! is so trendy, he doesn't need to copy newspaper, they copy him. He's not just a trend-setter, he's the !Trendkreator!

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Anonymous Coward

Home manufacturing is a solution to a problem which doesn't exist

With millions of goods and component manufacturers on the planet, global availabilty thro international procurement and shipping everything is already available to everyone. Goods cost pennies from China, shipping en masse is affordable - what's the solution home-printing goods is supposed to solve?

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Re: Home manufacturing is a solution to a problem which doesn't exist

a) The cost of shipping stuff is likely to rise.

b) We already have a shortage of some very specific things which would be easy to print. One example are spare parts. Others are custom mechanical parts, for example mobile device cases.

We are at the very start of something. It's like the home computer scene in the early 1970s. We now have early pre-made printers. They are still absolute shit, but so were home computers of that time. You couldn't write a letter on a Kenbak-1. It'll need time, probably at least a decade, then those printers will suddenly become useful.

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Re: Home manufacturing is a solution to a problem which doesn't exist

The cost of shipping stuff is likely to rise.

If shipping costs rise substantially faster than inflation, we'll have far more interesting problems than whether we can print spare parts with our home 3D printers. 3D printing (and other computer-controlled small-scale manufacturing technologies) may eventually be useful for things like producing spare parts, but only if something like the current regime of global trade remains, including the relative cost of shipping (in constant terms).

I agree that, barring calamities, we're likely to see more practical use of 3D printing; that the technology will continue to improve, making it feasible for more applications; and that while it's currently overhyped by professional hype artists like Chris "Long Tail" Anderson, that doesn't mean it's a passing fad. Even Wired editors can't always be completely wrong. But the shipping-costs argument isn't persuasive.

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Mock ye not

You really shouldn't be mocking these enthusiastic kids - you might be stifling the next Edsel or Sinclair C5 <cue muffled snort, tea coming painfully down nostrils>

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Is it me or...

do they all look delicious?

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Rocket?

I hope this article is a send-up, if not why would anyone want a model of the underside of a dead rat?

PG

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Holmes

Re: Rocket?

Er...yeah. The Bongster is so full of irony that his shit sticks to magnets.

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Not currently a big deal

So the samples shown aren't by any means representative of what the tech can do. Haha.

But moving beyond that, it has a ways to go to be a truly disruptive technology. It needs to be much faster than it currently is. It needs to do fairly large parts: think breadbox. It needs to be equipped with a rock solid 3d scanner. Finally it needs to ability to download new designs without depending upon the owner to know CAD.

With those problems solved you can then start imagining the reasons to have one. Need a new shaving razor? Print it up. Want a new hot wheel for your child? Print it. Need some eating utensils? What about a phone case?

The disruption will be to those industries that depend upon us buying massive amounts of small items that can be easily replaced. Printing shaving kit alone would cause large problems for Gillette. Doing small toys would impact Mattell, their chinese suppliers and toy stores.

The final items would be cost and reliability. It has to be sub $800US and just simply work without tinkering. At that point you will see middle income households buying it. Which would be a revolution.

There are so many things we buy whose manufacturing cost is orders of magnitude lower than the purchase price.. This type of technology would change the face of that. To survive those companies would have to focus on items that printers couldn't do; which I'm sure would be a constant game of cat and mouse.

Of course, IP rights to designs will also become much more important. And I certainly see a market arising similar to app stores for phones where designers publish their designs and people pay a few bucks to be able to print unlimited quantities of them. I, for one, am excited about having my own replicator.

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This was funny ...

... but if anyone thinks 3D printing is hype, watch this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQ-aWFYT_SU&noredirect=1

If you don't think the action at 3:00 minutes is magic, you don't belong here :-)

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Anonymous Coward

Can they print in body-safe silicon?

The next generation of "virtual" enlargement. You thought photoshopping models to be skinny was bad, wait until you see the "send your date a 'lifesize' replica" craze.

"Oops, I've just got to pop out to the chemist for a condom (rubber for our American friends)"

"No need, I have a bedside printer"

Where will it end?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Can they print in body-safe silicon?

> Where will it end?

In a pool of, er, tears.

I can see a downside to sending a "lifesize" replica. Finding it is left as an exercise for the reader.

What we need is a laser scanner to go with this. Then you can replicate all your "OO" gauge men for your crowd scene. Also, while manufacture and shipping may be cheap, Lego may not be so impressed if you start printing your own pieces. There's a fairly hefty premium on those bits of plastic.

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