Skip to comments.The 3D Printers Are Coming: Dig More Coal? (Will it disrupt Chinese manufacturing?)
Posted on 03/01/2014 1:09:59 AM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
The 3D printers are coming. And fast. The only debate is over how fast.
Velocity matters for stock pickers following the small world of pure-play public 3D printing companies. It is also relevant for business analysts and, perhaps surprisingly, for energy forecasters.
3D printers will as many have observed sometimes a tad too breathlessly disrupt a lot of businesses. They will enable and make more profitable many others, while also creating entirely new classes of businesses. The 3D printing ecosystem will as well accelerate the new trend of rising foreign direct investment into the United States. And 3D printing holds the potential to disrupt China, as I argued two years ago in an earlier Forbes column.
Most importantly, 3D printing is yet another feature in the suite of new technologies promising rising productivity, and thus in due course both wealth and job creation.
And, contrary to the claims of Al Gore among others who believe that 3D printers will cause energy use to decline as a result of the dematerialization trope, energy use, electricity use in particular, will actually rise as the technology goes mainstream....
(Excerpt) Read more at forbes.com ...
3D Printing With Metal: Engineers Create DIY Welding 3D Printer For Under $1,500
I know next to nothing about 3D printers, so, if I may, I would like to ask a question.
Can a 3D printer make large cap magazines? Can any make the spring out of either spring steel or something comparable? And last but by far not the least is, which one could do these things most economically?
I thank you in advance for any help you can offer.
Now that's an explosive market. I can't wait until I can print my very own Cracker Jack's toys without having to go to the store.
That said, the really serious stuff in metal and ceramic is a while away. And GE (with its acquisition of Morris Technology in 2012) is already getting staged to be the dominant player.
DDD and Stratasys will most likely be acquisition candidates at best...or toy makers and hobbyists favorites at worst.
Im retired now, but I was a design engineer for 35 years. I see these little plastic printers as allowing us to create new designs and not have to have a lot of money to see them become reality. I have a printer and am having a lot of fun with it. Friends have their own little projects they want me to print and I put an ad on Craigslist saying I would print their project for $20. I printed up 5 projects with just the one ad that I did just for fun. I advertised that I wouldnt ship a part, but I still had one order from New Zealand and one from Canada.
I dont have to have investors to have tooling, production or machining for just one prototype.
All that stuff was made with a 3D printer? Do you know enough about them to recommend one?
I lose pocket combs right and left. Will those printers print me out a pocket comb?
But the real 3-revolution will come about by how it changes the industrial world.
As an investor, I am wary of getting too worked up about 3D Systems and Stratasys being the next big stocks.
“That said, the really serious stuff in metal and ceramic is a while away”
3D systems makes LASER sintering printers and Arcam makes electron beam melting (EBM) printers.
And that's very impressive.
But when 3D Systems appointed will.i.am as its Chief Creative Officer and Stratsys bought MakerBot, some investors thought they were signaling that these two companies believed the future direction of 3-D was printing toys/action figures/design prototypes and retail.
Furthermore, 3D's heavy acquisition program has obscured their ability to achieve organic growth (i.e. growth from acquisitions might be unsustainable.).
It was 15 or 16 years ago that I worked on a project developing plastic enclosures for a new line of electronic components we were making. The industrial design outfit we hired had one of the original 3-D printers (I'm sure crude by today's standards) and they were able to produce pretty reasonable prototypes of several different designs that allowed us to evaluate them and make changes before we got to the really expensive tooling and mold making phase.
Having that capability sure saved us a lot of time and money.
Yes, mags can be printed. Heck, they’re working on printing whole guns.
No, I dont know the brands well and they are advancing quickly. It took me 9 months to get my printer working, it was a small fix in the software, but I didnt know anyone to ask for help. They arent as easy to use as they look and most of the part files you can download have not been tested for printability yet.
But if you have the time and determination it is fun.
It’s still experimental.
You didn't see my post #1?
3D Printed AK Magazine Released by Defense Distributed
3D Printed AR15 Magazines Offered for Sale
Already been done, in metal, by Solid Concepts.
Prototyping and one off parts = yes
Production = no
Type in “3D Printing” in search here and be amazed.
I figured out where 3D printing might make a big disruptive hit: Printer Ink Cartridges. Instead of one wall, a store has one 3D printer for every cartridge made. People could print them out at home, refillable for practically free. It would kill HP, Lexmark, Epson, all the big printer dudes — they don’t make their margins selling printers, they make it selling cartridges, ink, and paper.
These things are perfect for a small cottage industry.
Thanks to all,
They’re poised to print a real functioning human liver this year and a heart within a few more years. That’s no cottage industry.
Sorry, I didn't mean to suggest that what they were doing is a cottage industry, I was referring to a family business in Maine making high cap magazines and other parts for guns, fishing, etc.
The more I think about it the more I like the things a family could do with a 3D printer, and from what I am seeing online, tehy are not all that expensive.
No, there are already some under $500 units.