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3-D Printing Pen Can Draw In the Air

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the sign-your-checks-in-three-dimensions dept.

Hardware Hacking 85

Several readers sent word of a new addition to the 3-D printing industry. Most 3-D printers are roughly the size of regular printers, and require design files on the computer to guide the extruder. Now there's a much smaller and much simpler alternative: the 3Doodler pen, which lets you draw 3-D objects by hand. The people making the pen set up a Kickstarter project yesterday with a $30,000 goal. They reached that within hours, and now have pledges exceeding $800,000. "The 3Doodler pen is 180mm by 24mm. The pen weighs less than 200 grams or 7 ounces (the weight of a typical apple), although the exact weight will depend on the final shell specifications once in production. And we are using a universal power supply, so provided you have the correct adapter for your country, 3Doodler will work just fine on 110v or 240v. ... While the plastic extruded from 3Doodler is safe to touch once it has left the pen, the pen itself has a metal tip that can get as hot as 270C." The pen uses the same ABS/PLA plastic as most 3-D printers, and they're planning to host stencil designs on their website so that users have patterns to sketch from.

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Really? (5, Insightful)

Garridan (597129) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960199)

All that for a hot glue gun?

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960231)

Or toothpaste tube ...

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960259)

Electric hot glue gun that does ABS and PLA.
Yeah, I'm not impressed either, but I think it's a worthwhile artists tool.

Re:Really? (3, Insightful)

somersault (912633) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960341)

Well they're selling them for $50, that's not bad. And a hot glue gun doesn't have the same level of finesse/control, from what I can see online..

Re:Really? (2)

Garridan (597129) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960601)

Yeah, I see the difference -- but $800k to develop a hot glue gun just seems silly. On reflection (let's be honest, I post ontopic snarky FPs whenever I can) I see that most of their pledges are at the $75 mark, so this is mostly just people using kickstarter as a shopping site... and I'm totally getting one for my mom for her birthday.

Re:Really? (1)

HappyPsycho (1724746) | about a year ago | (#42978505)

I was going to say check out the kickstarter page but its in the summary:

'The people making the pen set up a Kickstarter project yesterday with a $30,000 goal.'

The R&D is already done, I'll hazzard a guess it is beacuse the factory isn't going to make 1 or 2 but needs an order of a couple hundred at least.

Re:Really? (4, Informative)

Nefarious Wheel (628136) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960873)

However, a jeweler's hot wax pen does have that level of finesse, and they've been around for decades. My dad used one in his shop, and they're configured for delicate work and fine trigger control. They're used to make wax moulds for lost wax casting in the manufacture of jewelry. I think you'd just have to raise the tip temperature and insulate the fingers a bit from the extra heat, and there you'll be.

Re:Really? (3, Informative)

Nefarious Wheel (628136) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960935)

Scan down to "Master Touch". It's a wax pen in common use, and the web site is a jewelry supplier. http://www.zilverwerk.net/Assortiment/KerrLab%20-%20Jewelry%20-%20Products.htm [zilverwerk.net]

Re:Really? (2)

ThePromenader (878501) | about a year and a half ago | (#42964457)

But why are they calling it a 'printer'? The comparison to 'data-driven' (aka 'computer controlled') 3D printer is apples to oranges.

Re:Really? (1)

FriendlyStatistician (2652203) | about a year and a half ago | (#42966361)

That looks like it just heats and sculpts wax, rather than extruding it. Quite a different thing.

Re:Really? (1)

thoughtlover (83833) | about a year and a half ago | (#42969863)

That looks like it just heats and sculpts wax, rather than extruding it. Quite a different thing.

Exactly. You can see in this video [youtube.com] how hair is built up by adding wax from a scratch lump to the head with a curved spike. There's no extruding wax device that I know of, but it would be cool to have if the aperture could change.

Regarding this ABS/PLA '3D Pen', I see a ton of plastic waste coming out of that device. I hope the owners of this project realize that and try to inform their customer base to try to recycle/reuse their plastic whenever possible. I love the Filabot that grinds up scrap plastic and makes new plastic filament for printing.

Re:Really? (3, Interesting)

forkazoo (138186) | about a year and a half ago | (#42961353)

Well they're selling them for $50, that's not bad. And a hot glue gun doesn't have the same level of finesse/control, from what I can see online..

I haven't actually gotten to play with one personally, but I am friends with the guys involved in this. Basically, yes, there is an analogy to be made with a hot glue gun. But, have you ever tried to "draw" a cube with a hot glue gun? Good luck with that. With the 3Doodler, you are working with a much finer 3D printing style plastic filament. It's essentially the printing head of a 3D printer that you can use to draw freehand with. The plastic coming out of the head cools very quickly, and is relatively strong compared to something like glue, so you can make all sorts of interesting shapes. They may post some additional videos to help clarify how easy it is to draw with.

Re:Really? (1)

Demonantis (1340557) | about a year and a half ago | (#42963171)

I think my hot end for my printer cost a little more than $50, but I love it and it is better than the design before it. I am surprised this would only cost $50 unless they are cutting corners or really working the economies of scale. You shouldn't even respond to the people comparing it to a glue gun. They simply don't understand what it going on. Hopefully this creates more demand for filament and improves the economy of scale for the people that are ordering the manufacturing of the filament so its cheaper for everyone.

Re:Really? (2)

DrVomact (726065) | about a year and a half ago | (#42964089)

It's essentially the printing head of a 3D printer that you can use to draw freehand with. The plastic coming out of the head cools very quickly, and is relatively strong compared to something like glue, so you can make all sorts of interesting shapes.

The "freehand" thing is what makes me think I'll never want one of these devices. I'm crappy at drawing things, and I expect that the best I could do with this fancy new tool is pretty much the same as I could do with a regular glue gun: make blobs, globs, and hardened plastic messes that I would quickly junk to hide my lack of coordination. For me, the attractive part of 3D printing is that I could use a computer to do it—I wouldn't have to depend on my hands, and my hand-eye-brain coordination, which all suck. Now if they would only make a 3D printer that I can afford...

Re:Really? (1)

fatphil (181876) | about a year and a half ago | (#42964803)

Agreed. In their video they say it's like a pen, but that's totally bogus. A pen or pencil works and is easy to use because you are rigidly resting upon the writing surface, and typically because there's friction providing nevative feedback to your movements. Neither of those attributes (rigidity & friction) applies to a device that's you're just dangling in mid-air.

Re:Really? (2)

somersault (912633) | about a year and a half ago | (#42965337)

In their video, you also see them drawing 2D objects on a paper stencil on a flat surface (to assemble into a 3D object later). You'd have to basically be incapable of feeding yourself before you're at the level where you're unable to do that.

Drawing in 3D would require more practice of course, but what they are saying is not "totally bogus"...

Re:Really? (2)

RevWaldo (1186281) | about a year and a half ago | (#42965753)

Is the device "smart"? I was imagining that a device like this would contain accelerometers to help control the flow of plastic out the tip - the faster/slower you move the tip through the air, the faster/slower the plastic is spit out. That would make the flow more "natural" and reduce the risk of the plastic globbing up or being stretched too thin, which is what happens with glue guns.

.

Re:Really? (1)

forkazoo (138186) | about a year and a half ago | (#42973621)

Is the device "smart"? I was imagining that a device like this would contain accelerometers to help control the flow of plastic out the tip - the faster/slower you move the tip through the air, the faster/slower the plastic is spit out. That would make the flow more "natural" and reduce the risk of the plastic globbing up or being stretched too thin, which is what happens with glue guns.

Nope, not smart in that sense. As far as I know, the design has no accelerometers. It's a super neat thing, but you basically have to be quite deliberate in the speed that you draw things with it. It's unlikely that what you suggest would work as well as you'd like because changing the feed rate would change the time spent on the hot element being melted, so moving slowly would be harder to cool effectively, and moving fast would mean semi-melted plastic. You can obviously change the wattage applied to the heating element, but actually changing the heat in something with enough mass to be useful for the application, quickly enough to work the way that you want, would be very hard.

Re:Really? (1)

The_PS4_Will_Fail (2847449) | about a year and a half ago | (#42965897)

But it's not a "printer". If this is a 3-d printer then my pencil is a printer. 3-d printers are useful because you can mass produce objects. Freehand doodling isn't that.

Re:Really? (3, Interesting)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960513)

You can do some neat [dailyartmuse.com] stuff [mrkate.com] with [fastcodesign.com] hot [webs.com] glue [blogspot.com] . ABS, being a bit stronger of course, would support some unique work of its own.

Re:Really? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960553)

Sounds ripe for a "Kickback" or "Kickstopper" -- get tons of viral interest from a Kickstarter idea, raise Kickstopper money to show investors that tons of people are interested, then cancel the project, return the money, and take it to real investors.

Re:Really? (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about a year and a half ago | (#42961237)

Then everyone who pledged thinks you're a cock.
Someone else takes your idea to some other investors and everyone buys that one instead.

Re:Really? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42968977)

When was the last time you made a buying decision based upon anything other than price? That's all that really matters to most people.

Re:Really? (1)

Grayhand (2610049) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960867)

All that for a hot glue gun?

That was my first reaction. The difference is it also cools the plastic which is different if you are familiar with hot glue guns but it is essentially a hot glue gun.

Re:Really? (0)

Jarik C-Bol (894741) | about a year and a half ago | (#42962185)

That was my first thought. "so he 'invented' a hot glue gun?". Color me not impressed.

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42965119)

Hot glue doesn't set that fast. If you look at the video, the extruded filament hardens almost instantly on leaving the tip - otherwise you couldn't draw shapes in mid-air without support.

Cool idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960225)

As useless as it sounds at first, I think most of us will spend more than a couple of minutes or even hours doodling with it.
I hope it becomes a reality!

so it's basically ... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960235)

so it's basically a glue gun that squirts out colored glue.

Re:so it's basically ... (2)

CanHasDIY (1672858) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960313)

so it's basically a glue gun that squirts out colored glue.

Uh, wouldn't that mean that 3D printers are basically just CNC mills with glue guns mounted where the mandrel should be?

Re:so it's basically ... (4, Informative)

jandrese (485) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960347)

There are different forms of 3D printers, but that is a pretty accurate assessment of some of them. Others shoot a laser into a pool of material that hardens it in place or do other things.

Re:so it's basically ... (1)

cheaphomemadeacid (881971) | about a year and a half ago | (#42963621)

wouldn't that mean that this is a gluegun WITHOUT the cnc mill attached? wouldn't that make it a gluegun and not a 3d printer?

Re:so it's basically ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960811)

well, yes, that's exactly what they are, [though the glue gun has some actual numerical control on it as well, or you'd just make a mess]. what's your point?

Re:so it's basically ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42966311)

so it's basically a glue gun that squirts out colored glue.

African-American glue, you racist.

I'm not sure what it says about me.... (1)

mark-t (151149) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960239)

.... that the very first thing I thought of when I read the headline was spiderman's webshooters.

Re:I'm not sure what it says about me.... (3, Interesting)

greywire (78262) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960299)

Webshooters would be more interesting than a glorified hotglue gun.

But if you can get one of these at Michaels in the future for $10 I'd probably buy one.

3d printing the new raspberry pi (0, Flamebait)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960257)

Can we go a week without some new 3d printing story?

Re:3d printing the new raspberry pi (1, Insightful)

Longjmp (632577) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960357)

Can we go a week without some new 3d printing story?

While 3-D printing may not be of interest for you, I'm considering buying a 3-D printer, maybe this, maybe next year.

Reason? I'm building RC models. Ships, cars, planes.
Some scale, some just fun models. Point is, you need some small scale lifeboat, landing gear, whatever and can't find it from usual manufacturers?
Simple, now just print it. Sure, it will not be cheap, but that kind of hobby was never cheap anyway.

Re:3d printing the new raspberry pi (4, Informative)

smellsofbikes (890263) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960817)

If you don't already know this: you should consider the resolution you need pretty carefully. If you're printing stuff for 1:48 or larger models, an extrusion-based 3d printer will probably do okay for you and they're not too expensive: some exist under $500. But if you're working with smaller scales than that, you're likely to need some sort of photolithography setup and those are expensive to buy and surprisingly expensive to run because of the raw materials cost; it's hard to justify buying one for yourself compared to making the models and having shapeways.com actually print them.
But if you're working larger-scale stuff, it's amazing how much use you can get from a cheap extrusion printer; once you have one, you start using it for scads of other things you never thought about doing previously.

Re:3d printing the new raspberry pi (4, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960603)

I agree. Every week Slashdot should randomly pick one topic for which all stories are ignored. No exceptions. This way, everyone who dislikes a particular topic can be satisfied knowing that at some point, for some week, those stories will be ignored because they don't like them.

It won't do a damn bit of good, but what the hey!

Re:3d printing the new raspberry pi (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42962573)

Actually Slashdot has already been doing that for years now. But as the same people complaining hate on everything, they never noticed :P

Re:3d printing the new raspberry pi (1)

delt0r (999393) | about a year and a half ago | (#42965527)

Why not just let people who don't like a topic/post/story not click on it? I mean its not like you are made to read every front page story now is it.

It's a big deal for us (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42962621)

AC because moderated above

We got a 3D printer a little less than three weeks ago (Replicator 2). In that time, we've gone from having to machine parts for our mechanical prototype system (2+ weeks) to being able to print parts in less than 2 hours. This is saving us so much time (which = $), I can't begin to tell you how important it's become. So, yeah, I'm happy to see more 3D stories on /.

Re:3d printing the new raspberry pi (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42964819)

We can, but then it'll be a week about bitcoin or raspberry.

Re:3d printing the new raspberry pi (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42966363)

If I have any say in it, it will be.

I just bought a raspberry controlled 3D printer with bitcoins. I'm going to submit that as a story.

The new Space Pen (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960283)

Somebody should take a few of these up to the space station.

Re:The new Space Pen (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about a year and a half ago | (#42963069)

Could only be used in a glove-box. Evaporating solvents from hot plastic are verboten, and the risk of accidentally breaking off small flakes (from drawing very thin, fast "lines") would be unacceptable.

Glue gun? no wait.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960473)

All examples are drawing on a flat surface then upending the design to show it is '3D' and or connect the surface details.

This is achievable with a hot glue gun on a no-stick surface, ABS feed simply has more recognition in the 3D printing community.

Re:Glue gun? no wait.... (2)

Em Adespoton (792954) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960655)

The benefit of this ober a glue gun, other than the accuracy as noted, is that it can be used as a spot welder for ABS (so you can repair/join/tweak current 3D printed objects). They need to make tip attachments for smoothing/beveling etc....

Re:Glue gun? no wait.... (3, Informative)

TheGavster (774657) | about a year and a half ago | (#42961489)

In their Kickstarter video, they show several models built up from the table's surface. This material also appears to harden much faster than a hot glue gun, and have a faster feed rate, given that vertical features formed just about as fast as ones on the table. One thing they do seem to need to work out is how to end a line; the operator in the video spins a tight circle and pulls away like a hot glass worker. It only sort of works here, since there's no flame to burnish the burr away with.

What is the advantage? (4, Insightful)

hammeraxe (1635169) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960525)

Surely this goes totally against the main advantage of 3D printing - create a complex shape in CAD and click print - no crafting knowledge/skill necessary! You get accuracy and get to go do other stuff while your creation is being printed.

This just looks like.... hassle.

Re:What is the advantage? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960579)

Obviously it should be combined with a programmable motorized pen holder. ;-)

Re:What is the advantage? (1)

turp182 (1020263) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960625)

I believe artists will flock to it and create some cool stuff.

Re:What is the advantage? (1)

P-niiice (1703362) | about a year and a half ago | (#42969991)

3d floating horse penises

Re:What is the advantage? (1)

WrecklessSandwich (1000139) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960631)

Suppose you're an artsy person that doesn't know anything about CAD software?

Re:What is the advantage? (1)

lxs (131946) | about a year and a half ago | (#42964587)

In that case you can either remain a hipster failure all your life or learn a real craft and over the years become a master at it.

Re:What is the advantage? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960637)

A hassle... except for the people who just want to make a piece of something. Who don't have CAD. Who don't want to invest the time it takes to transfer the design in their head into a computer. Who aren't engineers designing to a spec but artists designing to their fancy. Who enjoy getting their hands dirty more than clicking around on a mouse.

Don't want others to have it? Then don't fund it.

Re:What is the advantage? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960661)

Surely this goes totally against the main advantage of 3D printing - create a complex shape in CAD and click print - no crafting knowledge/skill necessary! You get accuracy and get to go do other stuff while your creation is being printed.

Why are any manufacturing tasks still manual? Because people are cheaper than machines.

Re:What is the advantage? (2)

jcoy42 (412359) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960711)

I can see several uses for this thing. As soon as I saw it I thought about re-bonding cracked plastic pieces, quickly making a plastic washer, using it to freeze electronic components that are likely to get bumped and break, or make a quick replacement knob for that amplifier I got at the thrift store. Heck, you could quickly draw an enclosure for a raspberry pi.

As others above have said, it's mostly a hot glue gun for ABS, but I can think of 3 or 4 times in the last year where such an item would have come in really handy.

For now I'll skip the $50 and continue using an old soldering iron and "salvaged" ABS. I'd certainly pick it up for $20.

Re:What is the advantage? (1)

forkazoo (138186) | about a year and a half ago | (#42961597)

Surely this goes totally against the main advantage of 3D printing - create a complex shape in CAD and click print - no crafting knowledge/skill necessary! You get accuracy and get to go do other stuff while your creation is being printed.

Obviously, if you want to make a dozen matching wallplates for light switches, you would want to use a "real" 3D printer instead of something like this. But, if you just want to doodle something for fun, then that main advantage of 3D printing doesn't really apply. Just making copies of stuff that other people have designed isn't really the only possible application of the technology behind 3D printers. Besides, if simplicity is the main selling point, not needing a computer, CAD software, fiddly motors to keep calibrated, firmware updates, or any of the other complications of a full 3D printer, is pretty neat. At very least, you have to admit that a lot of people are clearly interesting in it, considering how far they have blown past the original Kickstarter goal. (And, if you look at how small the original Kickstarter goal was compared to where they are at, you can see that they really weren't expecting quite this much attention!)

Disclaimer - I haven't actually had a chance to play with one of these things, but I am friends with some of the people involved in launching the kickstarter, so I have been following it for a while.

Re:What is the advantage? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42961845)

Yeah, fuck people with talent.

Title of Slashdot Story is misleading (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42960559)

Should be "3-D Printing Pen Can Spray Molten Plastic".

It can draw 'in the air'? (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960577)

*ahem* How do you keep it up?

Re:It can draw 'in the air'? (1)

fatphil (181876) | about a year and a half ago | (#42965427)

Rigidity, dear boy. Rigidity.

Great (2)

venicebeach (702856) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960611)

Just what we need, more plastic Eiffel Towers.

Re:Great (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about a year and a half ago | (#42962971)

The Eiffel Tower is the Utah teapot of 3d printing. It's an expected test.

Give credit where due (0)

mruizcamauer (551400) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960713)

Such negative comments... This is a prettty cool idea, not for replacing a 3d printer, just something using similar technology... Reminds me of the hot wire styrofoam cutters when I was a kid... A toy CNC, nichts? This is a crowd pleaser, just for fun, like a toy. There is a real 3d wire bender too yhat can take a cad file and render it, somewhat, but that is different. Kudos to the inventors! And to the critics, go do something useful instead...

Re:Give credit where due (1)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about a year and a half ago | (#42962437)

Welcome to Slashdot, where all technology is considered final with the first proof-of-concept demo. All further refinements to cooling, structure, manufacturing, efficiency, and/or any other limitation of the prototype system are completely obvious and not worthy of any praise.

Re:Give credit where due (1)

fatphil (181876) | about a year and a half ago | (#42965587)

> Welcome to Slashdot, where all technology is considered final with the first proof-of-concept demo.

And where all technology is considered new even if others were doing it years ago.

Us old timers (1)

codepunk (167897) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960787)

Us old timers used to play with something similar called a spin welder. Not exactly plastic extrusion but not that far off.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IiACyulRE78 [youtube.com]

In the air? (1)

jklovanc (1603149) | about a year and a half ago | (#42960977)

Sure it will print "in the air" as long as the object printed is supported by something else. Take a look at the examples. They are all standing on something. To me drawing in the air means having no support. Why is the accurate description of "3D printing sculpture by hand" not good enough?

Re:In the air? (1)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about a year and a half ago | (#42962377)

I see no reason it couldn't print without a support, since the pen itself must supply the force to extrude the plastic. Actually drawing something meaningful would be far more difficult, since you'd be fighting gravity the whole time. Take one up to a convenient space station, and that slight inertia of the already-extruded mass might just be enough to allow further detail to be printed.

Re:In the air? (2)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about a year and a half ago | (#42963021)

Yeah, boo to the devs for not inventing anti-gravity.

Re:In the air? (1)

jklovanc (1603149) | about a year and a half ago | (#42963275)

I am not panning devs for not inventing anti-gravity I am panning the submitter for claiming they did.

Re:In the air? (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about a year and a half ago | (#42963551)

No, you're doing what every nerd does on Slashdot, deliberately distorting colloquial language in order to set up a strawman to spew faux-outrage or mockery at.

The phrase is a perfectly reasonable way of describing, in a pithy title, a pen-like device which can shape lines in 3 dimensions by hand.

Re:In the air? (1)

jklovanc (1603149) | about a year and a half ago | (#42970143)

Thank you for assuming my motives.
1. It is not outrage or faux outrage, It is merely a statement of how the falsehood in the headline was unnecessary and is becoming so much more prevalent on /.
2. It seems funny how you accuse me of distortion but are fine with the distortion in the headline.
3. I have issues with inaccuracies that make things sound better than they actually are. To me that is false advertising and false advertising is bad.
4. "In the air" is not colloquial language. It means "in the air" as in supported by nothing but air and not "on the ground" as in supported by something on the ground. When flying a bird is "in the air".
If by "pithy" you men "false and inaccurate" you are correct. To me there is no need to fluff up a headline to get me to read and article.

Scalable Vector Printing! Now in 3D!!! (4, Interesting)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | about a year and a half ago | (#42961045)

Tie this pen to a robotic arm to control the movement of the tip very precise. Also control the speed of travel and may be bead size. May be tie three or four such pens oozing different materials. That contraption is the equivalent of rendering images using scalable vector graphics instead of raster scanning!. If we adjust the temperature and material properties, and some kind of active cooling we could create very strong wire frames. May be these wire frames could form the skeleton with some kind of charge to accrete charge particles to acquire thickness, color and other surface properties. The possibilities are endless.

Re:Scalable Vector Printing! Now in 3D!!! (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about a year and a half ago | (#42963203)

You could robo-arm vectorise a normal 3d-printer's extruder-head. Indeed, this pen is just an extruder-head made into a free-hand tool. The "breakthroughs" are in making it the right size/shape for a pen, making it cool/safe enough to hold like a pen (lots of heat right where you want to put your finger-tips), and making it idiot-proof to use. Putting it on a robot-arm, which doesn't need any of those things, you specifically aren't using the very things that makes this different from a regular old extruder head.

So the question is why hasn't someone stuck one of their extruders on a robot arm? I'd guess calibration control - the free-standing shapes would flex enough that you'd need a dynamic vision system for the arm to find a specific point on the existing shape to join/cross/branch lines. You can't just blindly follow a vector-map when the shape itself moves after being extruded.

May... be (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42964943)

'Maybe' is ONE WORD...

Re:Scalable Vector Printing! Now in 3D!!! (1)

lxs (131946) | about a year and a half ago | (#42967763)

To be fair, that is exactly what stratasys/reprap/makerbot etc. printers do in the XY plane. They are more like plotters in that regard. True, they do scan in the Z plane, but that is mostly a software problem. if you don't, making sure not to bump the head into the model is an extra problem you'd have to solve.

With accelerometers, you could record motion... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42961517)

...and use some sofware to replay it on a conventional 3d printer. In this way you could mass produce your "sketches" as "prints". You could also lay out models by sketching in air, import the "sketch" to your modeling program to refine it, then print a finished piece.

What's the big deal? (1)

blogagog (1223986) | about a year and a half ago | (#42961965)

I don't get the hype on this. It's not a 3D printer, it's a plastic extruder. We've had them for as long as we've had plastic.

Freestyle 3D Printing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42963927)

I am taking credit for the coining the phrase "freestyle 3D printing" of which this is the official implement. Congratulations 3Doodler for reading my mind/

factories in China (1)

quipalicious (1036368) | about a year and a half ago | (#42966517)

Seriously couldn't we just draw some of these here? With factory automation and all why isn't it feasible to make these at home? I always look for made in Canada/USA labels.

CIJ Printing (1)

HUAX (2567533) | about a year and a half ago | (#42994143)

Huax is a manufacturer of Videojet and Domino printer parts and filters,Domino filter,Imaje filter,Videojet filter,Willett filter and Linx filter. http://www.huax-printing.com/ [huax-printing.com]
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