“3D Printing isn’t here yet” & “3D Printing takes too much time” are two of the most common statements heard about the industry. I Obviously don’t agree, so In this series I will try to disrupt these and other popular misconceptions about 3D printing I hope I make it interesting, and maybe change a few minds too.
“It isn’t here yet” The first thought that comes to my mind when I hear this is, – is anything ever? So many industries & technologies keep improving yet we still use them during the process, in fact improvements are noticed and appreciated more when you have been using the “technology” and not sitting on the fence waiting for a perfect final product. Of course, some things are “not there” simply because they are still in development, not available for sale or truly used by no-one, I’m not referring to these.
Was the internet “there yet” in 1995? probably not for some, but it didn’t prevent people from becoming early adopters and pioneers in anything WWW. I’m sure if we dig for it there are hundreds and if not thousands of examples, but let’s get back to 3D Printing which in my opinion is totally here.
1. 3D printing is too technical, it’s not a Plug and Play experience
Technical? Yes, they’re right, it is. However think about this for a minute, so is driving, cooking, baking, any DIY projects or even changing a tire. Being technical doesn’t prevent us from using or doing daily tasks, on the contrary, we learn something new, we improve and we enjoy using it event more. Let’s leave plug & play to couch potatoes and switching channels on your TV (ha – unless you have one of these fancy universal remotes).
2. 3D Printing requires the use of software tools
Welcome to 2015, Software is part of our daily life tasks. We operate a smartphone, a washing machine, or configure our Facebook profiles, all based on software. Our ability to adopt to and learn how to use a new software, depends on how simple is the software and what we get out of it.
3D Printing tools are far from complex. Practice and you will get the hang of it. Once you do, you will have an endless amount of products to print for personal use or to give away to everyone around you. All manufactured at home. Quite an incentive if you ask me.
3. 3D Printing still requires finishing touches (removing supports, rafts and cleaning up the print)
Yes it does, so what? Working on the finishing touches of any creation is just part of the process, and you can’t deny 3D Printing is a creation. From gardening, to making cookies, from putting your makeup on, to painting your home, they all have a common denominator. There is a beginning middle and end to the process of creating something, some like a smooth finish, some like it fancy others prefer it rough but finishing is always there. whether you choose to file your print smooth or leave it rough, varnish or paint it, the finishing is where you can add a personal touch to your work, and make it a bit more “you”.
our “Angelo” mini shelf painted by one of our users for a beautiful finishing touch
4.3D Printing is Messy
So are babies, kittens and frankly … life I recommend keeping a large can nearby for your PLA trash and maybe find a creative way to recycle it, either as compost or make more filament for test prints. And BTW, a broom comes in handy.
5. 3D Printing is slow. It takes too long to print products
this is one of the examples where the word “printing” is misleading and the immediate comparison people make is to 2D printing
I think People expect 3D Printing to be instantaneous, and forget that slow and fast are relative terms, one’s life always has unused time in it. And since a 3D Printer does not necessarily require your constant presence, it can work on its own schedule.
On 3DShook, we decided to offer a search filtering based on time. we divided the collection into 5 time ranges and named them accordingly.
you might agree that time taken in the right perspective can change things quite a bit.
the 3DShook Time Filters for 3D Prints:
Quick - Up to one hour. An hour is enough time to grab a snack, check your Instagram, Twitter and Facebook or have coffee with a friend. By the time you finish your coffee or counting your likes, your print will be finished too.
a quick print and wonderful bracelet gift
Fast – 1-3 hours. Watch a movie, clean your flat, do a little gardening or fold the laundry, activities that take time, right? then let your printer work while you take care of daily errands
sweet addition to your dining table and under 3 hour print
Medium – 3 to 6 hours. Plan and cook a gourmet meal, clean the house from top to bottom before the guests arrive for dinner, the amount of time your children are in school or a drive to the mall and back. in this time range you get Bigger and more complex designs. so generally well worth the wait, if you even feel it.
these 4 amazing printable designs are all up to 6 hour prints
Long – 6 to 10 hours. Day long prints take a long time? Then why do my days seem to fly uncontrollably? Whether you start your print before you go to sleep or first thing in the morning before work or school, you will have manufactured a usable, functional product of impressive proportions, ready to use right out of the printer.
Overnight – Over 10 hours. Our longest prints – the biggest and most complex which make about 15% of 3DShook’s collection can take up to 24 hrs to print. And as 24 hour shipping when making an order on the internet is considered fast, so is 24 hours of 3D printing when manufacturing a well-designed beautiful product you desired. And shipping fees are always free
I know I may seem biased, and being a 3DShook founder, I have a clear interest in the world thinking 3D Printing is here.. yesterday
I do hope however, my thoughts can stir the discussion up a bit, and maybe change a few opinions.
let me know what you think about the current state of 3D Printing in the comments below.
Next up in this series….
Things People say About 3D Printing “I’m waiting for a full color printer”