3D Printing

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Well-Known Member
Oct 2, 2009
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When I was a kid (somewhere in the early 1980's), I had a Hot Wheels set that folded into a briefcase and unfolded into a miniature city. On the back of the set were two plastic legs that swung out and supported the upper level of the city.

Now I have two young children (both boys) and they love playing with Hot Wheels cars. Since my Mom threw out my old Hot Wheels city I decided to buy a "vintage" one off Ebay. The et was in fairly good condition but it was missing 1 support leg.

I measure the good support leg, modeled it in Solid Works, and used our Cubex Trio 3D printer to make replacement legs. It took just under an hour per leg.

This was not related to machining but I wonder what other process could have solved this problem that fast. I personally do not care for 3D printing. I have experienced nothing but problems with the printers I have used, they break very often, and are limited to what you can do with finished parts.

However, it was the only process that was able to make a replacement part out of plastic so quickly so I thought that was worth talking about.

I know 3D printers are getting better everyday and I'm looking forward to the day they are used everywhere and in everyone's homes. People thought computers in their homes would never happen!

Take care.



Nice work. That's a great use of 3D printing.

You probably could have done it as quickly if you had a $3 million dollar 27 axis CNC milling machine.

I read somewhere the other day that surgeons were using 3D imaging from MRI machines to duplicate sections of human skulls. Patients from traumatic skull injuries were having new skull sections made from 3D laser sintered metal components using a similar 3D printing technology.
It's spooky when you think about it. I saw on 60-minutes they were 3D printing human ears and with success, attaching them to burn victims.

My 10th grader brought in a 3D printing pen that he got for Christmas. It is a handheld device that looks like an ink pen but it super-heats a thin plastic thread to create instant 3D shapes.

In another 50 years we may be able to 3D print a whole person!

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