Etsy seller Niquegeek made these 3D printed stainless steel dice that resemble the beloved weighted companion cubes from the game Portal. They're hollow, and retail for $29.
This unique die (singular dice) is made layer by layer in a 3D printer and then fired to fuse the metal particles into solid steel.
It is available in a numbered version, a version with just hearts (similar to the pendant I also make) and now a numbered version with a heart for the 1! It makes the perfect gift for the Portal fan in your life!
Each side of the cube measures 9/16" across and it is hollow so it's much lighter than it looks. Each pendant is unique and the finish may vary slightly from the images.
Matthew Borgatti has built an air-powered, 3D-printed robot tentacle that waves in a friendly fashion and lends a helping hand. It is in no way erotic. Nuh-uh, not at all.
So, with a very nice looking tentacle in hand, it was time to start experimenting with robotic air control. I believe I’ve found a system that works in a pretty simple and straightforward way. It still needs some work when it comes to the programming end, but I think the mechanics are well sorted. The idea is to pulse air into the tentacle using a solenoid valve, and have a constant bleed on the line so that flex will entirely be controlled by how long the valve stays on. It’s sort of a low frequency PWM. I’d like to get this working using a visual interface in Processing but, given how little I program, progress has been slow. I’ve got a thread on Adafruit with what I’ve come up with. In the meanwhile, you might like to check a rough video of the trefoil inflating.
The European Space Agency is contemplating 3D printed moon-bases:
By using the Moon’s loose rocks (regolith) as a base for concrete, robots based on Monolite’s D-Shape 3-D printer will be able to build up a structure that uses as many local materials as possible. The idea is that with a shell made of moon rocks to act as a shield against micro-meteors and similar hazards, the living quarters for moon colonists could be inflatable envelopes protected by these shells.
3-D printing concrete in a vacuum is very, very different from printing it on earth. The teams have been experimenting with simulated moon rock material in vacuum chambers to find methods of construction that work. The problem being that concrete relies on applying liquids and unprotected liquids boil away when there’s no atmosphere. They discovered that by inserting the 3-D printer’s nozzle underneath the regolith, capillary forces kept enough liquid in place long enough to set properly.
This is also the premise of a novella I'm writing for Neal Stephenson/Arizona State University's Heiroglyphyics project. Nice to see reality clipping along!
RealAbsurdity's "Modular Snap-Fit Airship" on Thingiverse is a 3D-printable toy whose parts can interchangeably form part of a Saturn V rocket. More snap-fit vehicles are planned.
This is a fully modular snap-fit (no glue required) model of an Airship. It is the vanilla base for a series of absurd mashups that currently includes a Trireme and a Saturn V rocket. Designed for 3D print, it comes in two flavors: solid and shell.
He sez, "As a follow up to It Will Be Awesome if They Don't Screw it Up, What's the Deal with Copyright and 3D Printing? takes a deeper dive into the relationship between copyright and 3D printing. After more than a decade of being trained that every digital thing is protected by copyright, 3D printing gives us an opportunity to step away from our computers and remember that most of the things in the world are not protected by copyright. That means that they are freely available to be build upon, remixed, and improved without permission. With this paper we are trying to make sure people understand what is, and what isn't, protected by copyright so they can build more cool things."
Makies are the custom, 3D printed dolls that come from MakieLab, the company my wife Alice founded. The first couple revs of the doll were all bone white, due to limitations of the high-wearing, kid-safe plastics. But after a lot of R&D, the Makies have figured out how to do color, starting from today:
Fantastic: four! We present to you: Ice Frosting, Strawberry Milk, Cocoa Bean and Pale Pistachio. You can now order hand dip-dyed Makies, and the results are this delicious body-blush of colour. Note the variation, the “organic” effect, and the unique finish: your hand-dyed Makie won’t look like a uniform-plastic doll, but a feisty little piece of art.
Brian sez, "At CES, someone told me that there are something like 15 consumer 3D printers on the market. Turns out that was a low-ball. Kits included, there are 24 in this roundup -- and that's not including some that didn't make the cut for a variety of reasons..."
CES 2013 proved to be something of a coming out party for consumer-facing 3D printers. Sure MakerBot earned a fair amount of attention at last year's show with the announcement of the Replicator, which snagged its share of awards from various press outlets. This year, however, saw a relative deluge in 3D-printing representation, with strong showings from 3D Systems, FormLabs, MakerBot and the cloud-based 3D printer, Sculpteo. Even with so many companies rising to prominence, the dream of truly mainstream 3D printing still feels a ways off -- if that is indeed where we're inevitably heading.
A Dutch architecture firm plans on using a D-Shape 3D printer to output a house in the shape of a Mobius strip, a project they estimate will take 18 months:
Dutch architecture studio Universe Architecture is planning to construct a house with a 3D printer for the first time.
The Landscape House will be printed in sections using the giant D-Shape printer, which can produce sections of up to 6 x 9 metres using a mixture of sand and a binding agent.
Architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars of Universe Architecture will collaborate with Italian inventor Enrico Dini, who developed the D-Shape printer, to build the house, which has a looping form based on a Möbius strip.
As previously mentioned, I have committed to recreating a funny face made by John Scalzi, then getting my head 3D scanned while pulling said face, and releasing the scan as a CC-BY download on Thingiverse. It's all part of this most worthy fundraiser to help with the treatment and expenses from Jay Lake's cancer.
Scalzi has produced an array of astounding googie faces, and now there is a poll to pick the one I am to recreate in 3D-scanned glory. Vote away!
Last week, I blogged about the fundraiser to help sf writer Jay Lake with his cancer therapy (he's hoping to have his genome sequenced and to find some new avenues for treatment) and expenses. The fundraiser involves sf writers and friends doing "public acts of whimsy" as progressively higher sums were raised.
The fundraiser is going great guns, and I've thrown in my own "act of whimsy," which was unlocked overnight: because the fundraiser has crossed the $35K mark, I will "release a a CC-BY scan of my head while recreating any funny expression that John 'Rubberface' Scalzi can photograph himself making."
There are still more whimsical acts to be unlocked, all the way up to $100K ("Jay! The Musical!").
Filabot, "The Personal Filament Maker" is an ongoing open-source hardware kit project that aims to perfect a plastic grinder/melter that you can use to turn scrap plastic (including failed 3D printouts) into filament that can be fed into 3D printers. It's a promising step towards the blunderbussification of 3D printers, turning them into devices that can use any random junk as ammo for useful work:
The Filabot Reclaimer, is our flagship system, that allows for the already innovative 3D printing movement, to become more self sufficient, experiment with new materials, and recycle bad prints.
The Filabot Reclaimer includes the grinding, extruding, and spooling systems. The Grinder will tear up bottles and can handle up to a good 3in by 3in chunk of plastic. Material from the grinder can either be stockpiled or fed directly into the extruder. From there the extruder will melt and pressurize the molten plastic to push it thought the interchangeable dies. There are two dies included with the Filabot Reclaimer, a 3mm and 1.75mm, depending on the filament size needed. The spool system will automatically roll the filament onto a spool after cooling and sizing.
Kristin sez, "Based in Loveland, Colorado, LulzBot designs, builds, and sells desktop 3D printers, parts, and plastics for entrepreneurs, inventors, engineers, and experimenters.
They've just launched their AO-101 3D printer a high-quality, cost-effective solution that embodies the philosophy of "Libre Hardware," allowing people to learn from, share, and improve the hardware and software they use."
(MSOE staff member Jordan Weston shows the finished rapid-prototyped piece constructed of sintered nylon.)
The face vessels made by African-Americans 150 years ago in Edgefield, South Carolina, might have been small, but they told big stories -- stories of cultural movement, human survival, spiritualism and technological prowess, according to Jon Prown, director for the Chipstone Foundation.
(The original 19th-century face jug from Edgefield, South Carolina. Courtesy of the Chipstone Foundation.)
The exhibit, which originated at the Milwaukee Art Museum and was also on display at the Columbia Museum of Art in South Carolina, has a modern story to tell as well -- one that demonstrates the power of 3D technology to eliminate geographical barriers and preserve culture for future generations.