Food 3D printing isn’t all that new. According to news sources and 3D printing resources, it’s been explored by everyone from inventors to companies like Hershey’s.
There are plenty of 3D food printers on the market as well. Do we really need another one?
Well, when it’s the PancakeBot, the answer is “yes”.
All about the New PancakeBot Printer
The PancakeBot 3D printer actually started garnering press a few years ago, but it’s been a long road. If you’ve been following along with its development, you’ll be happy to know that it’s finally coming to market.
The official production version actually debuted at the 2016 International Home and Housewares Show in Chicago.
So, what’s it all about? Really, it’s an interesting design. The creator took a basic pancake griddle and added a 3D printer to it.
The print head is able to move back and forth, and side to side to create surprisingly intricate designs with pancake batter. Sure, it can create the Eiffel Tower or the Sphinx, but it can also reproduce human features, even entire faces.
One of the most interesting things is that the printer can be programmed to print features that need to stand out more before features that need to fade into the background a bit. For instance, on a face, it might print the eyes, nose and mouth first, and then the cheeks and outline of the face to create a very lifelike image.
All that’s necessary to print a pancake copy of something in the real world is to take an image and upload it to the PancakeBot’s software. This can be done with a PC, certainly, but it can also be done with a tablet or even a smartphone, so printing pancake selfies is definitely a possibility (this was actually demonstrated at the Chicago show).
The inventor of the PancakeBot, Miguel Valenzuela, originally created his design out of LEGO bricks, and it was meant for his young daughters. Seeing their enthusiastic support, he took it to the Maker Faire in New York, where the reception was even warmer.
Based on that, he began the long trek to final production, something that took quite a few years and a lot of hard work.
Eventually, Valenzuela partnered with StoreBound to create the final version. It will officially debut in mid-2016, and will set you back about $300 or so.
While that’s a lot to pay for pancakes, there’s no denying the fun element here. It might be a little too expensive for the average home, but it would certainly work well in a diner or restaurant setting.
It will even be available in a choice of red or black.