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  1. #1
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    Marine 3D Prints a Drone for Fraction of the Cost of Regular Drone

    Recently, Rhet McNeal, a 26-year-old Corporal in the US Marine Corps (USMC), noticed some issues with the hand-launched fixed-wing drones, the RQ-11 Raven and RQ-12 Wasp III, that the Marines use. The small drones are usually equipped with light payloads, such cameras for field surveillance, but they're so expensive that most Marines aren't authorized to fly them; it doesn't help that the drones can be tough to launch. So McNeal decided to do something about it, and turned to 3D printing to get his ideas - and the drones - off the ground. Read more at 3DPrint.com: http://3dprint.com/185446/us-marine-3d-printable-drone/


  2. #2
    Super Moderator curious aardvark's Avatar
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    maing a drone at 0.5% the cost of the origonal.
    Doesn't leave much room for defence contract kick-backs.

    Bet that final model mysteriously ends up costing a LOT more.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clare S View Post
    Recently, Rhet McNeal, a 26-year-old Corporal in the US Marine Corps (USMC), noticed some issues with the hand-launched fixed-wing drones, the RQ-11 Raven and RQ-12 Wasp III, that the Marines use. The small drones are usually equipped with light payloads, such cameras for field surveillance, but they're so expensive that most Marines aren't authorized to fly them; it doesn't help that the drones can be tough to launch. So McNeal decided to do something about it, and turned to 3D printing to get his ideas - and the drones - off the ground. Read more at 3DPrint.com: http://3dprint.com/185446/us-marine-3d-printable-drone/

    That is the Nomad, a 3D printed UAV I designed back in 2014, I even started a thread over here about it back then.
    This is plagiarism plain and simple, I'm contacting involved individuals and organizations about the issue.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by curious aardvark View Post
    maing a drone at 0.5% the cost of the origonal.
    Doesn't leave much room for defence contract kick-backs.

    Bet that final model mysteriously ends up costing a LOT more.
    It's even cheaper when the R&D consists of appropriating someone else's work...

  5. #5
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    What did you expect when you uploaded the files to Thingiverse? It seems odd to complain about "plagiarism" when you put them out there for anyone to use or modify for free.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by awerby View Post
    What did you expect when you uploaded the files to Thingiverse? It seems odd to complain about "plagiarism" when you put them out there for anyone to use or modify for free.
    The model was shared under a Creative Commons license (Attribution, Non-Commecial). The "Scout" is described as being the creation of Cpl. McNeal without any attribution to the original design, furthermore the design was passed on to the MITRE Corporation for certification and possible future mass manufacturing, all things not to be expected when a design is shared under those licensing terms.

  7. #7
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    Let us know how it goes as you try to enforce that "creative commons" license, okay?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by awerby View Post
    Let us know how it goes as you try to enforce that "creative commons" license, okay?
    So far so good, I've contacted the USMC and their response has been quite appropriate, Autodesk not so much.

  9. #9
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    Follow SarahA On Twitter
    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainObvious View Post
    So far so good, I've contacted the USMC and their response has been quite appropriate, Autodesk not so much.
    Glad to hear the USMC have been responsive! I'll update our article to ensure that it reflects your original design -- if you could share links to your Thingiverse design (and any other details you'd like), I'll amend immediately to include. Sorry to hear about this, and definitely appreciate your pointing it out.

    Please shoot over any info either as a response here or directly via email: sarah@3dprint.com so we can get this amended ASAP.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by SarahA View Post
    Glad to hear the USMC have been responsive! I'll update our article to ensure that it reflects your original design -- if you could share links to your Thingiverse design (and any other details you'd like), I'll amend immediately to include. Sorry to hear about this, and definitely appreciate your pointing it out.

    Please shoot over any info either as a response here or directly via email: sarah@3dprint.com so we can get this amended ASAP.
    Thank you Sarah, the 3Dprinting files were uploaded to Thingiverse in March 2014, here's the link: Nomad, an FPV/UAV 3D printed airplane
    There was also a thread in the RCGroups forums about the drone and the changes I made to the design over six months until the first flight: Nomad, a 3D printed, open source FPV/UAV plane
    And of course the thread about it right here in the 3Dprintboard forum:Fully printed UAV/FPV plane
    The USMC recognizes there was a mistake in failing to give proper credit for the design and offered me to include me in future media releases and to be part of any further developments of the drone.

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