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Last year, Staples entered the 3D printing market through a partnership with Ireland-based Mcor Technologies. Staples created a new service called Staples Easy 3D which would first launch in Europe, bringing 3D printing to retail.
Related: Watch a video about Staples Easy 3D
What’s different about Mcor‘s process is that it’s machines print on a stock of paper rather than extrude plastic. Each layer, therefore, is the resolution of a single piece of paper and can be any color.
“The models should be specially made for MCor Iris True Color 3D printer,” said CGTrader. “This amazing printer uses standard copy paper to print 3D models – it prints 3D object layer by layer on paper sheets. Colored ink is being deposited on both sides of the paper sheet in the printing process – forget about the single color, you can use more than 1 million of them in your design.”
“The best models will be made available for buyers in Staples MyEasy3D store,” added CGTrader. Maybe something like this photo-realistic orange.
Competition entrants can check a model’s printability via Staples My Easy 3D by creating a free store. Uploading your models for printability review is required to participate.
Sam Abbott Wins 3D Printing Design Competition, Then 3D Prints Skateboard
Soon after, Sam took a more ambitious project, designing and producing the world’s first 3D printed twin tip skateboard.
“There were published more than 250 3D models prepared for 3D printing from the May through June 2013,” CGTrader said in an interview with On 3D Printing. “Sam’s models are various and easy printable. From phone covers, jewelery to statues and other objects. Sam was the winner of 3D Printable Portfolio – that means he had to upload more models than others and the quality very important. He met these two requirements and won his Ultimaker.”
3D Printing a Skateboard
Sam’s next project was a 3D printed skateboard. Here’s a video of his 3D printing and assembly process.
We also caught up with the designer himself, Sam Abbott, in an exclusive interview.
On 3D Printing: How did you come up with the idea for a 3D printed skateboard?
Sam Abbott: I created the Skateboard design out of curiosity after designing many small items for 3d printing things like phone covers, jewelery, light shades etc. I was interested in print costs, print time functionality of the materials for a large design in 3d printing. Also I always loved to skate and so it was just an obvious choice to me to do a skateboard file. The form and aesthetics of the design were inspired from my memories of graffiti and street art from a recent visit to Gent, Belgium. Its 3D Geometry constructed in a way to add grip for grabs and less surface contact for grinds/slides.
On 3D Printing: Tell us about your experience of entering, and winning, the CGTrader competition?
Sam Abbott: Entering any competition is exciting as its a great way to see what others are doing and producing! It has the excitement of a lottery especially when the prizes are as awesome as what was awarded in this one. It has been an unbelievable experience to win the competition held by CGTrader. The competition the members of staff the platform to sell my files from has just been awesome and extremely helpful!
On 3D Printing: What do you plan to do with your Ultimaker 3D printer?
Sam Abbott: I am trained in SLS printing that is my expertise and so there is lots of learning, experiments and fine tuning to be done with the Ultimaker, as it build’s a 3d file in a different method requiring a different design approach. However I have successfully printed many of my rings, a phone cover, some vases, some technical parts for the printer itself and a mini version of my skateboard the size of a usb stick. I am currently working on a design to say thank you to everyone at CGTrader!
We can’t wait to see the next design from Sam.
3D Printing Design Competition Will Award Solidoodle 3D Printer to the Winner
To celebrate the launch of the Home Factory at this year’s 100% Design, the UK’s largest contemporary design event, the organizers are teaming up with iMakr, the world’s largest 3D print store, to offer 5 lucky creatives the chance to have their designs printed in 3D and displayed at the event.
100% Design is officially the UK’s largest design trade event with over 25,000 visitors including architects, interior designers, retailers and designers. The event is held between the 18-21 September and is the biggest event during the London Design Festival. 100% Design is expected to attract over 30,000 visitors in 2013.
The Home Factory is a dedicated 100 square-meter space at 100% Design exploring the potential of 3D printing. It’s a concept living space that demonstrates both the impact of 3D printing in an interiors setting and showcase some of the best 3D printed interiors products. UK 3D print pioneers, iMakr, will produce a concept space within The Home Factory that brings creativity closer to the technology.
Submit Your Design
The contest is open to any design, whether for the home or workplace. You can design anything from furniture to lighting to tableware to technology or an accessory. Submit your designs in 2D or 3D software. If a 2D drawing is selected, the contest organizers will convert it into 3D for you.
Here are some of the current highest voted submissions.
Judge’s Choice Award
The judging panel including 100% Design Event Director, William Knight will select 5 winners who will:
- Have their design 3D printed and displayed as part of the Home Factory feature at 100% Design
- Have their 3D printed works exhibited in the iMakr store in London for a promotional period
- Earn commission on their design if sold during the promotional period
One overall winner will receive a Solidoodle 3rd Generation 3D Printer worth £800.
People’s Choice Award
In addition to the Judge’s Choice award, the design that receives the highest votes will have their design exhibited at 100% Design.
Learn more about the contest, submit your design, or view submissions at Talent House.
Design Competition Invites Futuristic Habitat Concepts to Use New Large-Scale Structure 3D Printing Technology
“We are practical futurists” — Brian Korsedal, CEO of Arcology Now!
Arcology Now! Inc. is opening it’s revolutionary structure printing technology to the public, and hosting a design competition so that anyone can experience and contribute to the future of building.
The company is looking for submissions in the form of 3D models that will be compiled into structures. The winning model will be built full scale in the front yard of their office, with approximate dimensions of 30 ft by 30 ft by 15 ft tall. This is the first chance for the public to have access to any technology which can digitally design objects of this size and complexity.
Details on the design challenge are located at: http://www.arcologynow.com/#!design-competition/c1fhk
What is Arcology?
Arcology is a set of architectural design principles for enormous habitats (hyperstructures) of extremely high human population density. These largely hypothetical structures would contain a variety of residential, commercial, and agricultural facilities and minimize individual human environmental impact. They are often portrayed as self-contained or economically self-sufficient.
The stated mission of Arcology Now! is to give people their freedom back. The productivity of the global workforce has gone up exponentially while free time and overall feeling of well-being has steadily declined. Arcology Now! wants to develop ways to apply our society’s amazing technologies to giving people back their freedom.
For example, how would a low cost automated greenhouse which produces fresh vegetables in a wide range of climates affect health, happiness and wealth? How about a low cost, energy efficient home? A car-less city focused on walk-ability, bicycle locomotion and public transit?
It’s a big vision, and so we sat down with the CEO to learn more.
Interview with Arcology Now! CEO Brian Korsedal
We spoke with CEO Brian Korsedal, also known as “microchip” to his team. He has a degree in physics and used to design computer chips. He’s always been fascinated with architecture, off-grid living, robotics, manufacturing, 3D printing and art. He calls himself fluent in English and Binary and has been working on this technology on and off for about six years.
On 3D Printing: What is Arcology Now! and what is your involvement with 3D printing?
Brian Korsedal: The goal of Arcology Now! is to start printing arcologies, NOW! Seriously. We’re tired of seeing all these fantastic visions for the future. All these pretty pictures with futuristic technologies and absolutely no idea how to actually make them happen. We firmly believe we have the technology to achieve the essence of these visions of the future using today’s technology and a little bit of ingenuity. We are practical futurists.
On 3D Printing: Why are you hosting this design competition?
Brian Korsedal: We really want to show the world our technology works. It’s been a struggle, but we successfully invented a technology which can manufacture warehouse sized objects and larger. We’re limited by height due to the physical properties of the materials we are using but we can build unlimited in the X and Y directions. We can compile objects 200ft by 200ft by 40ft right now. We can probably compile things a mile by a mile by 40ft when we switch to C/C++ or a faster programming language. Right now we are limited by how fast the designs can compile. So imagine huge, monolithic pancake arcologies crisscrossed with bike paths and public transit at a fraction of the cost of modern buildings.
Unfortunately, we’re a bit poor. Seriously, we live in the ghetto in Phoenix. We don’t have the cash to really show people what this technology can do. :( It’s a bit sad. So we hope showing the world that this technology works on the small scale will lead to bigger and bigger projects.
We are also really curious what people will make. The great thing about 3D printers is the democratization of design. It enables people to bypass all the roadblocks to manufacturing and levels the playing field. Poor but talented people can compete. Those people are near and dear to our heart. It enables millions and even billions of people to become designers. I’m sure there will be quite a few revolutionary designs that submitted to the competition.
We hope to run design challenges for most of our projects. We love the interaction with the public and we love seeing what people can do. So hopefully this leads to bigger and bigger design challenges. We also need to test out the steps in printing actual houses. We have a roadmap of challenges which will test out every stage in printing actual houses.
On 3D Printing: What do you hope to see in the competition?
Brian Korsedal: Ha ha, good question. We hope to be surprised. We hope to see things that we never thought about. This is the first public test of our system so I’m sure there will be a lot of new discoveries in design techniques. We’ve built 6 structures so far and we’ve developed a lot of techniques on how to design interesting structures, but we’re just two designers. We want to see what the world thinks up.
On 3D Printing: How will you 3D print the winning submission, considering it will be quite large?
Brian Korsedal: Our printing process is a bit unconventional. We’re practical futurists and we have to design within the limits of today’s technology. So we start with the best building material, steel. Steel is way better than concrete. It’s has an great strength to weight ratio. It’s recyclable. It’s cheap. Most other people are working with concrete and that kinda freaks us out. It’s just an accident waiting to happen. Imagine an unreinforced concrete structure in an earthquake? It’s very dangerous. Our structures are strong enough we can roll them around our yard and they retain their shape. The strength to weight ratio of our structures is phenomenal and they are low cost.
We manufacture our structures from steel tubes. We’ve invented a brand new process unlike anything else out there. We built software which auto-designs steel space frames which conform to a surface. Whatever surface you put into the software, it generates a frame to match that surface. Most people are confused why we call it 3D printing, but we firmly believe we’ve captured the essence of what a 3D printer is. To most people a 3D printer is a device you can put a digital design into and it just makes it. We satisfy that definition with today’s technology.
The assembly is very interesting too. We took an approach that works kinda like computer programming of humans. Our software generates stickers with all the assembly instructions embedded in the stickers using a code. We put these stickers on the bars and the bars become the instructions. It’s designed so structures can be built in parallel by large groups of people. Imagine the people are an old punch card computer and the bars are the punch cards. The punch cards contain the program specifying the assembly and the humans run that program to put things together. We can teach people the code in about 10 minutes and it’s so easy kids can assemble it. We have build parties. It’s like a techno version of a barn raising!
We’ve done things this way because we want it to be affordable. We will be half the price of regular housing or less. It’s a revolutionary breakthrough in design and manufacturing of structures. A democratization of building and we can do it NOW!
Here is a photo gallery of some of the work by Arcology Now!
Competition Ends June 30 – Win an Ultimaker 3D Printer from CGTrader
As we reported in may, 3D model marketplace CGTrader is hosting a 3D printing competition, looking for innovative 3D printable models. Winning submissions will receive great prizes, including two Ultimaker 3D printers, 3D prints, gift cards from Sculpteo, Filaco, Stash, as well as an opportunity to sell designs in 3D printing store iMakr in London
In order to participate, designers need to create 3D printable models in .STL format and upload them for sale or download to CGTrader. Further information on the competition is available here: http://www.cgtrader.com/
The competition ends June 30, so submit your designs in the next 3 days!
Want to learn more? Read our full interview with the CGTrader team published in May 2013.