I have been really excited to be getting deeper in the Maker movement. Recently I asked on Twitter who were 3D printing their own 3D printed ornaments this year and received several responses. It was amazing to see what people were creating.
Look at these great 3D printed ornaments Z Corporation has been creating from their high-end professional 3D printers and posting to Twitter @zcorporation as well as their Flickr photo stream. http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/with/6506716133/
Beau Turner (@beauturner) has used his consumer model MakerBot 3D printer to create everything from a headphone organizer, boat curtain hangers, to Christmas ornaments. If there are levels from 1 to 10 for a Maker, Beau is rapidly approaching level eleven.Beau said he has become active in a local Hackerspace which are popping up all over the place (http://hackerspaces.org/wiki/Hackerspaces).
I have been doing a large amount of work with my local hackerspace ( www.757labs.org) and for anyone with interest in getting started or doing more these are a great resource to seek out and find individuals with various levels of knowledge and high levels of enthusiasm that are passionate about sharing this with others. My last couple projects could not have been completed without the talents of individuals involved and the willingness to share that knowledge. From software, hardware, fabrication and sewing to everything in between hackerspaces offer a great environment to learn and expand your own skill levels.
Beau told me about a boat he was restoring and the need for some curtain clips he could no longer find commercially available, so he designed and printed his own in ABS plastic. Imagine having a part list of appliances or other consumer products and being able to print some of the replacement parts without all the time waiting and the transportation energy and costs from the factory around the world.
Here is Beau proudly showing his own designed and 3D printed headphone storage organizer. The 3D printer makes you a mini manufacturing plant.
I too would be 3D printing holiday ornaments and other cool stuff like a abominable snowman or backcountry.com goat cookie cutters, iPhone case, and more but it was not meant to be. I had ordered a MakerBot from RobotShop assembled to be delivered yesterday.
What I received a day late was only a few parts like a wrench, consumable ABS, a circuit board, and no instructions at all. There are not even enough parts to build a MakerBot. On the bright side I get to spend more time with my family on my holiday week off instead of hiding in the office designing and 3D printing things.
Not everyone needs a 3D printer to create 3D ornaments, creations, or sculptures.
You can use the free Autodesk 123D Make to create patterns in cardboard, wood or plastic that can be assembled into a 3D sculpture.
We took our 3D models created using 123D Catch of fossilized hominid skulls into 3D models then using 123D Make create a cardboard 3D sculpture. The 3D skulls were created by photographing the skulls in Kenya by world renowned paleontologist Louise Leakey (@louiseleakey). The skulls were used to create a a 3D animated video walkthrough of a digital laboratory and start an online educational site http://africanfossils.org/. Not everyone can get to Kenya to see the real million year old skulls but sharing them and their research online provides most everyone access.
A life sized 6’3” 3D cardboard sculpture of Autodesk CEO Carl Bass affectionately named “Carl’board”.
Autodesk also created a 123D holiday ornament kit for kids to assemble at a holiday party and they also sent a couple kits to me for my 10 year old daughter to assemble.
The cardboard with the printed pattern all numbered so you know how to assemble it. 123D Make can also provide an animated assembly view so you know how to assemble it.
The Maker movement where anyone can design and create real things is gaining momentum and a real game changing event in design, innovation, manufacturing, creativity, and personalization. By taking powerful software and tools and placing it within reach of almost anyone worldwide it really does change everything. The person with a great idea no longer needs to get a pile of money and find a company or factory to prototype their idea, they can do it themselves and even build a business as many have on http://www.kickstarter.com/. This is really amazing and I knew it was going to be big when I attended MakerFaire last year as did almost a half million other people.
I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas or the holiday you celebrate as we speed towards the new year 2012. Be safe as I want all my readers to be there in the new year.
Ho Ho Ho, Have a Very Merry 3D Christmas Everyone!