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  1. #1
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    * 3D Printers - Future "China" Killer?

    3D printer technology is going main stream now. When it evolves to print more materials, we can all have our own desktop "factories" on our homes and offices.

    This could eventually eliminate the need of importing every plastic made items from China.

    Going to buy my son the new Cube 3 from Cubify - www.cubify.com

    You can print shoes, smart phone cases, tablet cases, jewelries, TOYS!!

    Have you used any 3D printers yourself? Which one? Cube, Makerbot, or others?

    Share your creative experience here! Planning to get my kids into 3D design for the future, maybe later on they can print cars and houses. That would be the day!
    Last edited by jrianto; 01-20-2014 at 07:11 PM. Reason: Typos
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  2. #2
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    I think you're spot on, with 3D printing starting a revolution that could have serious ripple effects throughout the current manufacturing industries, especially in China.

    I for one welcome our new 3D printing overlords, not that I understand much about 3D printing.
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  3. #3
    All these kind of posts seem to not really understand what 3d printers are...

    Lets bring an analogy to this.

    If you print a picture of an apple on YOUR printer, can you eat it? Will it change just because it's 3D? The answer is no.

    3D printer can print nothing but types of polymer (plastic for laymen) and it will never be able to print in all kinds of materials. That's just not how materials work... You can't shoot glass pieces and expect it to stick on there. You can't print diamonds unless you can achieve like 3500'C temperates with your printer. You can't create wood.

    The genius of a 3D printer is less about the physical printer but the material it controls. So, if you start the equation with the materials you want rather than trying to figure out what material is possible, you have a completely different problem. It'll be lot easier to cut a piece of wood than it would ever be to print it.

    At the end of it all, even if all this was possible. Chances are, china is cheaper than your printer.
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  4. #4
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    This is the one to watch from this year's CES:
    http://www.the3doodler.com/

    Pretty awesome IMO and if you wanted, you could engineer a box style printer with some plastic stock or wood, some small servo motors, and a stamp board or something like a raspberry pi to control the motors and volia a 3D printer.
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  5. #5
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    I wonder where will this technology be in 20, 50 or 100 years time. Makes you wonder how far off are we from star trek replicator technology, where we could replicate or make something from just pure energy.

    Exciting times ahead, if we don't blow ourselves up before then.
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  6. #6
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    I watched a special on this some months ago. As great as it is, it brings up other issues.....violence.

    There's a guy who can print a gun using a 3D printer. From what I remember.....he could buy the parts of a gun online, but certain gun parts that are illegal to buy (I think the firing mechanism), he would 3D print them and put all the pieces together and have a working gun.

    YouTube might have the interview.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by 48-14 View Post
    I watched a special on this some months ago. As great as it is, it brings up other issues.....violence.

    There's a guy who can print a gun using a 3D printer. From what I remember.....he could buy the parts of a gun online, but certain gun parts that are illegal to buy (I think the firing mechanism), he would 3D print them and put all the pieces together and have a working gun.

    YouTube might have the interview.
    You can make real firearms on a CNC machine that are not a one time use.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by 48-14 View Post
    I watched a special on this some months ago. As great as it is, it brings up other issues.....violence.
    You can print a knife or a screw driver, so does that make a knife or a screw driver violent?
    There's a guy who can print a gun using a 3D printer. From what I remember.....he could buy the parts of a gun online, but certain gun parts that are illegal to buy (I think the firing mechanism), he would 3D print them and put all the pieces together and have a working gun.
    The 3D printing gun industry is pretty big now, but was started (I think) by an "principled" anarchist type chap, Cody, more as a response to people's liberty being threatened under a police state surveillance driven big government controlled by corporate masters.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b8qtJuOFbs4

    His politics is complicated, and he sees releasing downloadable specs on building a 3D printed gun as being more a political act, in defiance of the system, than about building a 3D printed gun.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie Bob View Post
    You can print a knife or a screw driver, so does that make a knife or a screw driver violent?.
    Hahaha. In essence, anything can be a weapon....but as some will say, weapons don't hurt/kill people, people hurt/kill people. I have yet to see a gun walk itself into a situation and hurt people


    I do get your point and there's a lot of positives in 3D printing. The same positive and negative mindset could be used towards the advancements of robotics and the robotic company that Google invested in. Even in their current development stage, any military with a fleet of these robots could defeat humans. Enter Optimus Prime


    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie Bob View Post
    The 3D printing gun industry is pretty big now, but was started (I think) by an "principled" anarchist type chap, Cody, more as a response to people's liberty being threatened under a police state surveillance driven big government controlled by corporate masters.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b8qtJuOFbs4

    His politics is complicated, and he sees releasing downloadable specs on building a 3D printed gun as being more a political act, in defiance of the system, than about building a 3D printed gun.

    I will watch it again tonight. I'm still worried.
    Last edited by WPCYCLE; 01-21-2014 at 06:51 PM.

  10. #10
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    The 3d printers are really neat but I don't think they will ever replace mass production from China. The cost to produce a million of the same toy from China is pennies compared to what it would cost you to print "1" yourself.

    When the price of the 3d printers come down, I do foresee toy companies selling "files" to print the toys yourself for hobbyists, similar to what iTunes did to CD's, but I still think that will be a very long time from now and still would never replace mass production.
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  11. #11
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    3D printers threatening China's industry? I doubt it. Where do you think the cheap 3D printers will be manufactured? ;-)

  12. #12
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    Yeah, I have to agree. I do not think 3D printing at this point is going to do anything to China. 3D printers are not affordable for everyone and do take a while to produce things. I think China has it in the bag for production.
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  13. #13
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    The 3D printers were extremely expensive 10 years ago. Now, it is still expensive around $1,299+

    This sounds familiar right? I bought an HP printer for $20 at Walmart for the kids a year ago.

    This 3D printer cost will go down to maybe $500 or so, then $200 or so.

    Then the plastic to print the object with will eventually come down as the competition arise.

    Any of you guys plays with Tamiya toys? We can now design our own Tamiya toys then print it, then build it, then paint it.

    It will boost kids creativity to the next level, my 10 year old is super excited about this. He enjoys coding, and now with this 3D printer, his creativity can manifest into real world objects.
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  14. #14
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  15. #15
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    I am pretty sure this is going to be the future.

    3D printing body parts: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9RMx31GnNXY

    3D metal printing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i6Px6RSL9Ac

    3D printing gives man a new face: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5SWw_qM6_8I

    The possibilities are endless.
    Just imagine the future. You need a replacement cart part. Just go online and download the blueprint, and print it!
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by ans_steve View Post
    3D printing gives man a new face: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5SWw_qM6_8I
    Wow! Never seen that one before!
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  17. #17
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    3D printers, curved screen, bit coin: all will be flops.

    Let's dig up this thread in 5 years time.

  18. #18
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    If anything, this will help production of products overseas. Making prototypes and molds are still very expensive, these 3D printers should help lower the cost to entry.

    Let's be real here, no ones going to mass produce any type of product using any of these new "3D Printers". The manufacturing business overseas have been doing this a lot longer, they are 10 steps ahead of 3D Printers.
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  19. #19
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    What is going to threaten china, is that they are advancing in education and willpower much moreso than the 'Western' world and will in relative terms 'soon' we able to be our masters, with us being their manufacturing to drive their mass consumerism and vast materialism. All because we are getting far to apathetic to care how far we are dropping as a society, we will go in circles of life and time and have to be the peons/ants/slaves to another before we relearn to appreciate our education and inventive spirit that is dying among the masses.

    If you want to disagree, I highly recommend you go spend at least 2 weeks working in your local public high school and evaluate fully what you see afterwards.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by hellind2 View Post
    3D printers, curved screen, bit coin: all will be flops.

    Let's dig up this thread in 5 years time.
    Some bold predictions there. Care to put a wager on that?
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  21. #21
    I look forward to seeing this become a reality.
    But mass adoption is 5-10 years off.
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  22. #22
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    Welcome to 3D printer. Its a new step in the enhancement of technology. Just imagine that where will we stand after 10 years.

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