During my first contact with the RepRap , one simple question that I struggled to find answers is : “Can we build something usefull with it ?”. Searching on google brings no good answer : mostly images and videos of Reprap printing Reprap parts … So, is this thing just another geek toy with no real application or can we really build something else ?
Browsing the objects database thingiverse gave me some ideas. It is a website where people post plans of objects they have designed. Many of these objects are intended for 3D printing. Too bad the database is polluted by the Makerbot guys feeding it with their 3D scans, which have, to my opinion absolutely not their place here…
Some ideas for making custom toys with the machine.
Something that I find quite impressive with the RepRap is the ability to print very high quality systems of gear. Examples:
Small everyday objects
Here I have collected some examples of what seems to be the greatest strength of the RepRap. Simple objects to solve everyday life problems : a spray nooze head that fits on water bottles, a dremel tool holder… And above all, the machine can produce replacement parts for common objects, like this faucet head. Who has never had to discard a device that could work perfectly fine, if only you could replace that small broken plastic part …
One of the most stunning thing you can find on thingiverse is this lathe, made entirely by extrusion with a very smart autolocking chuck !