The future of 3D printing is not only promising but also very exciting. After proving its mettle in a wide array of industries, the 3D printers are on their way to conquer the toy world. The toy world is considered to be one of the most dynamic sectors because of the ever changing demands of toys. So in order to be at par with the demands it’s important for the companies to use technology that gives them all the liberty in the world to make the necessary changes and create objects with high precision and speed. These requirements are fulfilled by 3D printers, which have proved to be ideal for bringing various designs to life.
3D printers have proved themselves as being perfect for making miniature clones of anything. So making toys with the help of 3D printers will be child’s play. The toy industry is influenced by big companies like Fisher Price, Hot Wheels etc. Moreover, the industry is a hard nut to crack especially for SMEs and individual designers, who do not have sufficient resources to stay in the market and innovate. 3D printer will now give individual designer to cultivate their talents and bring their imagination and innovation to life.
There are many companies that are promoting such individual designers as well as the usage of 3D printers in the toy world. Few companies which are active in this new and positive change camp are ToyFabb, Modarri and Dynamo Development Labs.
ToyFabb is a Switzerland based company which was started by Jochen Hanselmann and Alex Schmid. The website of this company allows designers or hobbyists to create, a free account and can publish their designs are then sell their own models to customers. The website is also well equipped to fight a battle against piracy. Designers are the ones to decide whether the customers will receive the STL file of the design or the G-Code can be streamed securely to their 3D printer once. The other great step taken by the company is that of hosting an online contest for both hobby designers as well as professionals. Through this contest the company is looking for 3D printable designs that will be shown to the world. The last day for signing up for the contest is 30th September, 2014. The winner will bag a prize amount of $100 US. To check out the contest as well as all the new innovative 3D techniques that are being used by the company you can long on to their website which is ToyFabb.com.
The other company is Modarri, which enable its buyers to choose custom materials and colors and order their desired product. It also helps the buyers to substitute broken parts and also download the CAD files to design each part from the scratch.
Dynamo Development Labs, which was founded by Tucker Johnson and Wayne Lossey developed Modibot, a modular action figure that can be printed, and is currently available on the website of Shapeways. The lab is at present making a hybrid manufacturing model. The main aim of the company is to develop new approaches to creating toys.
Apart from these companies, there are various other companies that are contributing towards bringing the 3D printing technology into the toy industry. The entry of 3D printers in the toy industry will surely bring in the concept of open markets in this much monopolized industry.
Image Credit: Julian Fong (flickr handle – levork)