THE HOT THREE: Top 3D print creations of the week (18th October)

3. The 3D printed pinhole camera

The best 3D print-related Kickstarter campaign of the week was almost certainly the one for the Flyer 6 x 6. From the mind of Texan designer Clint O’Connor, this printable pinhole camera smashed its $1,200 target in less than a day. Right now its total kitty stands at a whooping $6,226, with 23 days left in the campaign.

 

Printed Pinhole CameraPinhole Camera Exploded

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That cash will be used to perfect the design and ensure the final product prints with zero complications. O’Connor promises the Flyer will take 6 x 6 cm square photographs and offer 12 exposures to a roll of 120 film. Plus it will be ready to use within 30 seconds of coming out of the box. Once the campaign is over, the camera will be available either to order directly or print from a downloadable STL file, along with directions.

 

2. 3D printing will make horses go faster

While we’ve seen 3D printing affect industries as diverse as engineering, medicine, architecture, art and retail, one area in which it has not been put to much use is sport. Yet its mixture of customisation and precision surely makes it perfect for creating sports equipment, as you can craft items specifically to each individual athlete and their body shape.

 

3D printed horseshoes

 

Aussie scientists from the Commonwealth Scientific and Individual Research Organisation (CSIRO) certainly seem to agree with that idea. This week they printed a set of four purple titanium shoes for Melbourne racehorse Titanium Prints. While traditional aluminium shoes weigh 1kg, the titanium version is less than half that. In horseracing, where weight is all important, those lost kilograms could allow horses to hit speeds they have never before reached.

The process requires a scan of the horse’s hooves, which is then converted to a CAD file and printed. Four titanium shoes take about a day to fire off and cost $600. That makes them more expensive than the traditional kind but Titainium Prints’ trainer reckons the speed-boost will make it all worthwhile.

 

1. Incredible 6-axis 3D printer

It’s difficult to describe just how fantastic the 6-axis 3D printer built by researchers at the University of California actually is.

We could tell you it has twice the range of motion of nearly every other additive manufacturing device out there. We could tell you that those extra 3 axes mean you can print on curved or angled surfaces. We could tell you this means you don’t need the traditional flat surface and stable ground required by the standard 3-axis 3D printer. We could tell you this will make repairing objects much easier, as you can print a replacement part directly onto even the most strangely shaped item.

We could tell you all those things, but none of them would be as informative or fun as watching the ace video of this machine in action. Enjoy!

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