Typically, small studios and independent designers have only had a couple of choices when it comes to producing performance-quality 3d prints in the process of prototyping—either use a standard desktop 3D printer and expect to do some serious touch-up, or turn to an industrial service bureau where designers work with
People rave about the painting on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, but few discuss the scaffolding used to get Michelangelo up there. Sometimes when you're creating something, whether it's a work of art or an object, you first have to make an absurd amount of supporting jigs, fixtures or
Earlier we wrote up Xometry, the online, on-demand manufacturing platform that gives industrial designers instant quotes. With an existing network of producers equipped with machines that can do Selective Laser Sintering (SLS), Stereolithography (SLA), Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM), Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS), and PolyJet, they've got digital fabrication pretty
There's something charming about creating your own fire pit or fire ring with pre-cut blocks or natural stone: But if you're interested in something more designey, Ben Uyeda shows you how to create your own shapes by injecting some digital fabrication into the process. Uyeda CADs up his desired forms
In recent years desktop CNC milling's barrier to entry has been lowered, thanks to a rash of Chinese-made machines that can be had for a seeming bargain. But as ShopBot Tools founder Ted Hall points out in "All Desktop CNCs Are Not Created Equal," CNC mills are like many other
The days of large-scale American manufacturing, with factories employing thousands of workers, are over. But what's truly sad is that the manufacturing jobs that are available here often can't find properly trained workers. According to Deloitte's "The Skills Gap in U.S. Manufacturing" report, produced in conjunction with the Manufacturing
After much hype and a swarm of pre-orders following CNC router Shaper Origin's introduction to the market in 2016, Shaper's sales team brought their shopping cart to a halt, giving time for them to fulfill pre-orders and produce more units. The Shaper Origin has recently been made available for pre-order
Before buying one, how do you determine if any given FDM (fused deposition modeling) 3D printer will be able to do what you need it to? Shouldn't there be some universal test print, like those printer test pages that you can use to determine if your printer's up to snuff?
Scribit is a vertical plotter that you hang, using wire, from two nails placed in your wall. After telling the device (via smartphone or computer) what the precise distance is between the nails, it can now draw on your wall, from files that you feed it, with accuracy. The thing
When there's a natural disaster and our government is paying attention, we send scores of physically-fit, militarily-trained young men and women to the site to render assistance. This is a logistically massive task. For starters, all of those men and women need a place to sleep in between shifts. Tents
This incredible clip of high-speed laser engraving is gaining steam on Reddit: Of course there's no attribution, so I can't credit the company nor machine. But poking around on YouTube turns up similar videos from another high speed laser engraver, by a company called Z-Tech Lasers, and these
Disney Research has come up with a design/fabrication aid sexily named "Mechanical Characterization of Structured Sheet Materials." What they've done is create a variety of lattices based on different isohedral (i.e. tiled) patterns... ...and observed the differences in each pattern's range of movement when stretched. They then came up with
We started this design series taking a look at iterative design with bikes, and now we're ready to shift gears (hah!) to tackle an increasingly popular and more radical form of transportation: the skateboard. There's a long history of 3D printed skateboards online, from the daredevils at Braille Skateboarding who will skate absolutely anything to the early board designs on Thingiverse, but it wasn't until we joined Frog's skateboard challenge that I committed to designing a functional 3D printed
"The ease of being able to upload a part," says Josh Haldeman, an industrial designer for protective gear company Bullard, "and instantly know what it's going to cost me is phenomenal." Haldeman is referring to the instant online quoting process for Xometry, a company that connects manufacturers and fabricators with
Dremel's forthcoming DigiLab laser cutter, announced at last year's Maker Faire, is scheduled to drop any day now. The release date was slated for Summer 2018, and since it's now summer we just checked their website. They've not updated it with a hard release date, but we do see that
Shapeways, the 3D printing service and marketplace known for their reliable on-demand printing in a variety of materials, recently announced their first in-house line, Spring & Wonder. The collection features a variety of customizable jewelry that leaves customers in charge of the size, shape and message written on their pieces.
To celebrate this year's NYCxDesign, MakerBot hand-picked 17 New York City designers and put them to the test of designing and prototyping an object to improve daily life. The 13 individual designers and 2 design duos were each given a MakerBot Replicator and a few rolls of filament to
When I hear "3D-printed bike from Silicon Valley" I start to roll my eyes, but this company is actually onto something. Arevo is a start-up that has figured out how to simplify and re-size, rather inexpensively, the carbon fiber manufacturing process. Typically, carbon fiber is difficult and expensive to
Sinterit, the first manufacturer to deliver affordable desktop SLS 3D printers, is introducing a new generation of its very successful Lisa printer into the market. Lisa 2 extends the capabilities of its predecessor without losing its main goal of bringing designers, start-ups and industry manufacturers an affordable printing tool with
Design requires, by necessity, a lot of iterations of an object before you get it "right." What do you do with the eleven 3D-printed models you cranked out before settling on design #12? A company called ReDeTec (which stands for Renewable Design Technology), was in attendance at the World's Fair
Anything can be designed in the digital space, but not everything can be 3D printed. When you design a part for 3D printing - whether it's for prototyping or for manufacturing end-use products - certain limitations apply. These limitations have to do with the basic mechanics of each additive manufacturing process (and the laws of physics).
If you want to start using Fusion 360, it can be helpful to have someone walk you through a basic project. In this video, 3D-printing enthusiast Wekster shows you how to model a simple ray gun from the "Earthworm Jim" cartoon. He starts with a 2D hand drawing, then
The gun control debate may be over. In order to understand why, we need to look at the anatomy of the AR-15, the assault rifle that's currently dominating the headlines. One reason that the AR-15 is popular among gun enthusiasts is because it's infinitely customizable. Owners can select from a
3D printing materials and manufacturing processes go together hand-with-hand: often choosing a material, also dictates what 3D printing processes are available to use. But with such a vast selection of 3D printing material options, how can a designer make an informed decision?
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