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World’s First 3D-Printed Car

The body for the Urbee 2 prototype from Ecologic is printed using “Fused Deposition Modeling” formed by thin layers of strong plastic sprayed one at a time for 2,500 hours.

3D Printing in Space

In October of 2014 NASA will deliver a 3D printer to the International Space Station so that replacement parts can be printed out as needed. The European Space Agency is working on plans for a 3D-printed moonbase that would feed lunar dust into a printer that fuses it into structural components.

Military Marches Ahead with 3D Printing

The U.S. military is already using 3D printing to let soldiers in the field modify pretty much anything as needed.

Boy Gets 3D-Printed Hand

On the medical front, a 3D printer has been used to produce a $150 prosthetic hand for a boy that would cost $10,000 through traditional means.

Surgeons Practice with 3D-Printed Bones

Data from CAT scans fed into 3D printers produce exact models of patients’ bones so their doctors can practice complex surgical procedures before wheeling them into the operating rooms.

3D-Printed Bone Replacements

A woman in the Netherlands was outfitted with a ceramic jaw in 2012, and researchers in Washington state are printing out the next best thing to bone: a scaffolding that can be attached to damaged bone to allow the body to regrow and repair bones.

Solidoodle Puts 3D Printing Within Reach

The Solidoodle 2 3D printer earned a rare Geekbeat Editor’s Choice Award. This 3D printer starts at $499, putting it within the budget of just about anyone. During our tests we were able to easily replace a lost mounting joint for one of our camera rigs. You can find the full review at Geekbeat.TV/solidoodle.

Turning Recyclables into 3D Printing Material

Researchers at Michigan Tech have created a plastic extruder called the Filabot that turns home recyclables into usable spools of filament for your 3D printer. The first model is going into production now and is expected to sell in the under-$400 range.

A Cool Hack for Smoothing 3D-Printed Creations

For those of you already tinkering with 3D printing, here’s a cool hack for smoothing out your 3D printed creations using home appliances and fingernail polish remover.

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About The Author

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John P. is CEO of Livid Lobster and co-host of Geek Beat TV. You can also find him on Twitter and Google+.

3 Responses

  1. Ron M

    John,
    Your tip about shining plastic parts by heating in acetone is just plain DUMB. Acetone is very volatile, low boiling point, & highly flammable! Worse yet, you show someone retrieving a part from the acetone using bare hands. When someone follows your tip & gets 3rd degree burns or burns down their house, you’d better have a good lawyer!

    • Avatar of John P.
      John P.

      Hey Ron,

      First of all, I hope you realize I’m only reporting on something someone else is doing. It wasn’t me doing it or recommending it. In fact, it may be dangerous, and so are many other things I report on people doing – but that doesn’t mean I’m advocating it.

      Having said that, I don’t think its quite as dangerous as you might think. Acetone is used in fingernail polish remover, and women all over the planet stick their hands in this stuff every day. They even sell 100% versions at WalMart:
      http://www.walmart.com/ip/Onyx-Professional-Nail-Polish-Remover-Maximum-Strength-100-Pure-Acetone-16-fl-oz/11047134

      With regards to flammability:
      “Acetone has, however very high ignition initiation energy point, so accidental ignition is rare. Even pouring or spraying acetone over red-glowing coal will not ignite it, due to the high concentration of vapour and the cooling effect of evaporation of the liquid.”

      No doubt it is dangerous, and flammable, but it would probably take someone trying to light it on fire to actually burn the place down.

      Cheers,

      John P.