We’ve been keeping tabs on all the news coming out of the 3D printing world and we have to say, it’s pretty incredible. This technology has really taken makers by storm and they’re doing amazing things with it. From studies on the health and economic effects of household printers to finding the perfect pair of sunglasses, here are 10 new developments in the world of 3D printing this month! We can’t wait to see what September brings ;)
1. Microfactory: The Microfactory is 3D printer meets milling machine (it has the full functionality of both) that will fit on your desk and cut down on mess and noise. This is basically ultimate tool for makers, and essentially enables you to make a wooden iPhone case at the same time as you make a plastic bracelet. It’s not available for purchase yet, but the team is working on a Kickstarter campaign and we’re waiting with bated breath for updates!
2. 3D Printed Ink Cartidges: This might be the most meta 3D printing moment ever. A printing supplies retailer in the UK successfully 3D printed an ink cartridge for a 2D printer. Our heads hurt a little bit now, but this is kind of awesome and it’s cool to see companies getting involved in the technology.
3. 3D Printers Emit Dangerous Chemicals: All you 3D printing experimenters, be sure you’re working in a ventilated space! Turns out, home 3D printers do emit some potentially toxic substances, including ABS. While this is definitely an important discovery, it’s not enough to imply that 3D printers can’t be used in a home or office, simply that investing in a fan and opening some windows would be wise!
4. 3D Printing Could Save Households $2000 per year: On the bright side, a study from Michigan Technological University confirms that a 3D printer is totally worth the investment. It posits that the technology could save your family about $2000 a year… and with less expensive printers now on the market, they could pay for themselves several times over!
5. 3D Printed Knob Helps You Drive Stick: If you’re struggling to learn how to drive a stick shift, this little gadget might come in handy! Hacked from an Xbox controller and a little 3D printing magic, the device will vibrate when it’s time to shift. It also has an LED screen that will let you know what gear you’re in. Awesome!
6. 3D Print at the Library: Libraries aren’t just for books any more! The MLK Jr. Library in Washington DC is just the latest to get in on the 3D printing craze. They’ve not only got a printer for patrons to use, but they’re also offering classes to help people learn to use the device.
7. Custom Sunglasses: Stop wearing ill-fitting eyewear! A new line of sunglasses, Protos, is 3D printed to match the shape and size of your face. So go ahead and wear your (perfectly tailored) sunglasses at night!
8. Sculpt Software Lets You Easily Create Objects: A new software from 3D Systems, Sculpt, makes designing objects for printing easy enough for most people to manage. It’s fun to use and really does feel like you’re sculpting a piece of clay, bringing the analog vibe to this cool digital technology.
9. 3D Printing Fails: Reminiscent of Cake Wrecks, this Flickr shares images of 3D printing projects gone awry. Not only is it fun to browse, it’s also a great resource on the what-not-to-do’s of this relatively new process, as many users share information on what went wrong with their project.
10. Living Tissues with Sugar: Some of the coolest uses of 3D printing have come from the medical world. This new development comes out of Penn, where researchers have been printing vascular networks with sugar to help improve living tissues. Sounds pretty sweet to us!
Sad Keanu: You can all go home now; 3D printing has reached its zenith. Shapeways now offers an itty bitty sad Keanu Reeves figurine. Seriously, we’re not quite sure that it can get more awesome than this.
Have you experimented with a 3D printer yet? Did we miss a mind-blowing piece of news? Share your thoughts in the comments!