Fun Fact Friday: 3D Printing

(Zureks/Wikimedia Commons)

(Zureks/Wikimedia Commons)

Did you know that with a 3D printer, you can fabricate your very own toys, tools, or miscellaneous parts with a touch of a button? It’s true!

3D printers, a relatively new technology, put the power of plastic in the hands of hobbyists and do-it-yourselfers. Using digital modeling files made from scratch, or downloaded from enthusiast websites, 3D printers commonly “print” by building up the plastic, layer by layer, in the shape of the item that is being printed, from bottom to top. The user then simply cleans and trims off any excess plastic, and the item is complete.

One reason why 3D printing is particularly revolutionary is cost. While 3D printers haven’t become quite affordable enough to become a common household item (like a regular printer), when contrasted with the cost of having a single item created by traditional means (such as injection molding, which can cost thousands just to have the mold made) the advantage of 3D printing is clear. The array of interesting and useful things that can be created with a 3D printer is only limited by the creator’s imagination!


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One Comment;

  1. Sarah said:

    3-D printing is great! There are so many opportunities here, for education and beyond. I wrote about some of the medical applications and some teaching resources for 3-D printing here:
    and about 3-D Food Printers and teaching resources here:
    It would be wonderful to get makerspaces in all schools so that kids can innovate everywhere!

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