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  1. #1

    Awesome Use of 3D Printers - Replacement Part for Discontinued item

    I saw this on Reddit and thought, "wow, this is finally a very useful application for 3D printing." The poster's fence post topper was gone, and the product had been discontinued. What did he do? he took a picture of one of the toppers still on the fence, and basically made a copy of it using his Makerbot 3D Printers. The end product, almost perfect. Here's the images and story:

  2. #2
    Super Moderator old man emu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Narellan, New South Wales, Australia
    That is where 3D printing will shine - one-off manufacturing of discontinued items. Set up 3D printing shop next-door to a national hardware retailer and the world will come to your door seeking things that cannot be otherwise obtained. Who needs to waste time building a better mousetrap?

    Old Man Emu
    You may go past me,
    But you won't outlast me!

  3. #3
    Engineer ralphzoontjens's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Tilburg, the Netherlands
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    Wow, that's a lot of work for one little cap. But yes I agree this is a great use of 3D printing. I have already used it successfully too to replace caps for things like USB sticks, kitchen items, or some broken plastic mechanical components that you just can't reorder separately. There needs to be a service to support this use of 3d printing if it isn't there yet. An online database just for replacement parts, where people can sell their models for small fees. It would list all items in a thoroughly categorized way, and it should also have a section with requests so people can ask modelers to create parts to add to the database.

  4. #4
    See thats not a bad idea at all! maybe that should be a project that some us could start together? ... but then again, theres lots of replacement parts on thingiverse.
    But i believe that people dont actually upload all of their stuff, as they dont get anything in return.
    I think i wouldnt use the service myself, except for very complicated parts as i myself am pretty good at designing parts from scratch, but others may not be as good at it as the next guy.
    Anyone that would be interested in this kind of service, should reply to this thread. as i might be willing to participate in managing such a site

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