5 Ways 3D Printing Can Benefit Your Everyday Life
2023 Feb 7th
You may be aware that automakers and medical device manufacturers are using 3D printers to create prototypes and working parts made of 3D-printed plastic. But 3D printing isn’t just for sophisticated applications coming out of research and development labs. Learn five ways 3D printing can benefit your everyday life.
All you need is a little creativity, a 3D printer suitable for home use, and the right kind of filament. And if you’re not familiar with computer-assisted design (CAD), there’s a robust online community of makers who readily share their 3D designs (models) on sites like Thingaverse or MyMiniFactory
Hobbyists have devised ingenious hacks for everything from carrying shopping bags to enhancing bikes to making customized screwdrivers or kitchen utensils. Anytime you’ve found yourself thinking, “There’s got to be a better way!” the answer may be 3D printing. You could even make tools to support your hobbies, like knitting needles or crochet hooks, table tennis racquets, or pots for seed starting or houseplants.
If you have an artistic bent or just have an idea of what you want, you can create or find online models for vases, wall art, sculptures, frames, and lamps. One of the benefits of 3D printing in everyday life is the ability to create intricate designs that weren’t possible with traditional methods, including forms with extreme angles, cut-outs, bends, and twists.
Repair and Reproduction
You dropped your favorite mug or broke the clasp on a cherished necklace. With 3D printing, you can create replacement parts for these items, as well as toys, games, housewares, and heirlooms with moving parts that aren’t available anymore.
When creating items that will be in contact with food, make sure to buy 3D printer filament that is FDA-approved for food contact.
People who perform at Renaissance fairs, LARP (live-action role-playing) enthusiasts, and Hollywood costume designers have used 3D printing to create props like swords and costume pieces like brooches, headdresses, masks, and prosthetics. With 3D printing, you can transform yourself into a Vulcan, a Klingon, or an elf.
You can 3D print all sorts of gifts, from change purses to key fobs to jewelry. Elevate homemade gifting with 3D printing techniques that will give the reaction, “You made this yourself?” an entirely new impact. As more colorful filaments become available, your ability to make visually attractive toys, game pieces, bracelets, necklaces, and useful household items like reusable eating utensils or cups expands.
If you’re unsure about what kind of printer might work for you or what filaments to use, research community colleges and organizations offering classes that introduce 3D printing techniques. Give it a try, and you might get hooked!