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Jan 2007 13

Homebrew Rapid Prototyping

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In the words of a friend.. "Santa clause machines are cool.."

.. and I can't agree more. I want a machine that I can hook up to my computer and have it "output" or "print" a 3d model. The technology is here, and it's here now.. but it still costs around $20k!

I mean it might as well be a million.. At this point, its not quite to the at home market.. its still something that only big companies can afford.. and that's a damn shame.. The market is SO there.. If you made a 3D printer device that could easily kick out objects for even $1000 people would buy it.. I know I would..

I have looked at ways to create such a device myself and in just about every case there is some major barrier.. not the least of which is my lack of knowledge..

And I'd love to lie to you and say that I want this machine for the betterment of man.. but.. uh.. no I just want it to play with..

More specifically I want to be able to create 3d miniatures for some of the table top games I play, like 40k. No more paying Forgeworld $70 for a model that costs them nothing to produce.. I can just kick it out of my handy dandy 3d printer.. Suddenly the market would shift from making real products to making 3d models that you print out yourself.. Think of the possibilities..

There are already a few other sites out there that boast they can do this - like Fab@Home.org and RepRap.org but their abilities are poor at best.. A long way from nothing, but an even longer way from something useful.. And considering its 2007 and we are supposed to have flying cars by now.. I don't think this is too tall of an order.

There must be a way to create some stereolithography or polyjet machine that could do the trick on a home scale.. If Sears can come up with a at home CNC carving machine, then surely someone can come up with an at home fabrication device...

OH well.. for now a pipe dream... and most likely for the forseeable future.. Back to buying my models at over priced stores in the UK that take ages to ship..

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