7 years back a friend of mine bought a 3D printer, which was the first experience I had with a rather old technology that started to be more prominent in the household, largely due to the RepRap project started in 2005. At the time I mostly found it interesting from a technological standpoint. It was new, exciting, and pretty cool.
3D-Printed Ornaments and Drone Parts
This 3D printer ended up being used to make small ornaments, drone parts, and even a new 3D printer, a Delta 3D printer. Fast forward to today, 3D printing continues to improve and is now easily accessible and can produce astounding results. Most schools have a 3D printer available for their students, which they can use to craft quick prototypes or parts. It is an amazing teaching tool and can help develop and visualize ideas that was earlier kept on paper by inaccessibility to machinery and materials. At home, it is a tool with almost unlimited possibilities for tweaking small stuff or creating ornaments such as a Bulbasaur flowerpot or pieces for your favorite board game.
3D-printing allows for rapid prototyping
I mostly use 3D printing in my work at DTU Physics, where I am also currently taking my master’s degree. It gives me an opportunity to quickly design and print parts needed for the setup in the laboratory. Even if the task is unfit for a 3D printed part, it still gives a great opportunity to test dimensions and functions before investing time and money into creating the part by other methods.
3D printing may seem daunting at first with the need to maintain a printer and design parts yourself, but the reliability of new printers is so good that maintenance is a rare issue, especially with all the great resources online. You can also just seek out a place offering to use 3D printers and avoid the maintenance issue all together. It is not even necessary to design parts yourself as places like Thingivers, Grabcad, and many more offers hundreds of thousands designs.
So, no excuses for not learning something new and try it out – it might prove useful in your work-, study-, or homelife.