Saturday, May 29, 2010

3D Printers for the Masses

Fab@Home aims to change the way we live by allowing anyone to produce custom 3D objects with a 3D printer developed at Cornell University.  Shown below is Model 2 being developed in the Cornell Computational Synthesis Lab.

You can build your own personal fabricator by following the instructions on the Fab@Home wiki or buy one at the NextFab Store.  The video below shows one in action creating a gear.
Here's another video showing how it can mill foam and wood.

Update: MakerBot is another 3D printer that you can make yourself for less than $1000 (Update: latest model fully assembled is almost $2000).  It creates ABS plastic models using a heated extrusion process.  You can buy a kit and spools of various colors of plastic material to create with at the MakerBot Store.


Paras said...

I wonder which direction home manufacturing will take. 3d milling can be done much faster and the resulting structure will be stronger but tons of material gets wasted. Printing with liquid plastics means waiting for layers to dry before the next layer can be deposited.

Aaron Clarke said...

Paras, I added another video that shows milling. I'm sure it would be cheaper to just support one or the other. It's a good question to consider for more affordable fabricators.