3D Printing: Make Anything You Want

The power of digital arts has never failed to amaze us as it takes its steps from a simple 2D animation to a 3D, reality-like environment that could make you feel like you’re part of the scene. Well, how about we take those digitals out from the screens and make it tangible? No, this is not a hologram gentleman, its 3D printing- the art of turning your ideas into reality.

“This better be good!” are the words from Chuck Hull’s wife as he woke her from her sleep at the night of 1983 to show her a really tiny object. And for over 31 years, he refined his creations. By his innovation and success, more and more people have become fascinated with this technology that they have also found ways to stabilize the use of 3D printing.

The Products of 3D printing

Yoshimuto Imura, 27-year-old Japanese who made 5 guns using 3D printing with 2 of these actually capable to fire real bullets was arrested in Kyodo after posting a video of his creations. His house was raided since gun possession is strictly prohibited in the country.

Scratch that! Let’s get to the good piece.


Are you a fan of geography and biology? Then you’ve probably read some of National Geography’s magazines. But, have you seen the Guinness Book of World Record title holder as the tiniest magazine cover that can’t be read without an electron microscope? 2,000 copies of these covers could fit in a grain of salt! And this was done with IBM’s microscopic 3D printer.

But the real agenda is to make it a perfect tool for rapid prototyping. In the near future, this tool might be able to work out the pathways for future processors. Read the full article about IBM printing the smallest magazine by Lance Ulanoff here.


*Photo Credits: www.mashable.com

The medical field is also indulging into 3d printing. A man who had a hole in his face from the left of his eye down to the cheek caused by the surgery of removing the tumor from his left eye found a new life with his new face. A doctor have scanned his skull and printed a mask to cover up the hole using a 3D printer and his face was almost back to normal.


Jose Delgado Jr., a man born without a left hand obtained it after 53 years of waiting. It was a gamble with Simon- a 39 year-old entrepreneur who saw the potential of 3D printing. Using Jorge Zuniga’s design, Simon was able to print a 3D prosthesis for Jose that could sense the muscle movement to open or close, to grip or let go. This $50 3D printed hand can also move five fingers compared to his previous $42,000 myoelectric hand that could only move the first three fingers.


Using a patient’s cells, doctors could 3D print small body parts such as the ears and nose. Not only that, some doctors are testing the production of 3D organs for transplant. Yes, I’m referring to kidneys and such; “… instead of printing sheets of papers with ink, you’re actually printing tissues with cells”, said Dr. Anthony Atala- leader of Bioprinting.


How does it work?

You make an object using any animator software and connect it with the 3D printer. The 3D printer now gets the data and prints the object layer by layer. In 3D printing, you have syringes filled with liquid consistencies. It can be plastic, rubber, some could even use metal and as said on the previous, it’s possible with construction wastes mixed with fast-drying cement. A 3D printer could cost about half a million bucks but companies are starting to find ways to make it more common to the public that it could cost to only around $1,000. (CNN Explains 3D printing).

But if you’re 3D printing food, it works on a different way. It prints from the top by spreading a fine layer of a substrate such as sugar. And on top of that, it is painted with water on the bottom-most cross-section of the layer through an inkjet head. This 3D food printer could cost around $5,000. See the interview about ChefJet 3D printer here.

3D printing may have a limited scope as of now but, who knows? We might be able to run a 3D printed car, Store foods on a 3D printed refrigerator or even dress up in 3D printed clothes? Bicycle parts can be produced with 3D printing now. Sunglasses and shoes have already been 3D printed, too! And 3D printing organs may just make a huge breakthrough as these organs may become compatible for transplanting. Though 3D printing has already been here since the 80’s, it was until now that it has unleashed its great potential. But what will happen if anyone could just print what they want?

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