3D printing technology has evolved and changed very quickly during its brief lifespan, and there have been a lot of innovations here. Have there been “revolutions”?
Not so much. It’s been a slow, steady march into the future.
However, one British company might have just ushered in the real revolution with the new Industrial Revolution III printer Kickstarter campaign. What’s it offer?
Actually, there’s a lot to love here.
A Look at the Campaign and the Printer
According to the Kickstarter page, this will be, “The world’s first product assembling 3D printer.” Not only is this printer a significant step forward for home enthusiasts, but it promises to give significant new capabilities to manufacturers and designers.
“Offers you a unique app store type opportunity, and the chance to sell and deliver sophisticated working products direct into the homes of a global customer base,” continues the description on the Kickstarter page.
There’s a lot of promise in this printer. The creators promise that it changes the current technology paradigm, “by picking and placing modules into a print and connecting them electrically by wiring conductive tracts, it is able to create fully functional working products”.
In theory, here’s how the process might work.
You buy the Industrial Revolution III printer and install it at home. Then you buy a design from a manufacturer – maybe a blender.
The design is downloaded to the printer, which then prints the blender out and even assembles it, complete with wiring. You take the printed blender, plug it in and make yourself a smoothie.
Sound far-fetched? If this printer is able to get off the ground, it won’t be.
Of course, the printer does offer some significant advantages to makers, as well as to manufacturers. If you opt to buy one of these, you’ll find patent pending technology in place, allowing you to easily build fully functional items rather than inanimate ones.
Some of the standard modules available include touch screens, smartphone controllable electronics, rechargeable power packs, wheels, sensors, motors and more.
The timeline is pretty loose here, though. If the Kickstarter is successful, there are several more steps to occur before you can get your hands on a printer.
For instance, FCC and CE approvals won’t be sought until sometime in August 2015, with the first printers shipping to beta testers in October. Mass-market launch of the printer would occur in April 2016.
In terms of perks, there’s a lot on offer. The minimum donation (a single pound) gets you a mention on the company’s web page (and the option to get a t-shirt for an additional 25 pounds).
The tiers ramp up after that, including design class opportunities, the chance to get in as a beta tester and more.
The Kickstarter project has a goal of 50,000 pounds, and at the time of this writing, it has earned just over 10,000 pounds. It’s set to expire in 22 days (May 7).
If you’d like to throw your money behind this innovative creation, you can do so right here.