mohammed sabeel

CEO | Tekno Track (Pvt) Ltd.,

This conversation is closed.

Will 3D printing be practically usable?

In my point of view, this project will never be practical or as you say we will not be able to use such type of a machine. Let's assume I get the machine and I'm a 3d modeler, first thing I would create is a gun. :) So will my government let me use such type of a thing ? All products what we think should come to us through a procedure. Not by just printing it of course I'm happy to hear that it works, but it's not usable. It may be dangerous.

  • Feb 5 2012: I agree with you, it is dangerous that anybody could print any object. When you see how easily you can download a song or a movie today, being able to download and make objects at home would be a disaster for the entire society. Imagine companies leaking industrial "printing designs files", how would authorities detect patent infringements ? Anyone would be able to copy anything just by buying the material needed to make it, ignoring copyrights and such. Moreover it would give another excuse for governments' Internet censorship, which we don't want to happen.

    And I'm not even talking about dangerous things like guns or knives which you talked about already... A lot of people can make a knife with hours of handcrafting, but everybody can search the Internet ten minutes for a knife design and press a button to print it.

    3D printers in industry, research or medicine is a great innovation, but it would be a frightening Pandora's box if left in everyone's hands. They have to be spread wisely, whatever companies would win by selling these. Let's hope these guys won't mess societies just for the sake of winning another billion.
  • thumb
    Jan 31 2012: Just imagine; they are talking about being able to basically FAX a new organ to someone who needs it. It's mind blowing!
  • thumb
    Jan 27 2012: As a retired model maker, Industrial Designer, Producr Designer wanted-to-be ... I can see great potential for the future in 3-D models. As a model maker, I could never produce what is now possable with this technology! And it's headed toward what they used to do on the Star Treck Enterprise! ... Of course 3-D "printing" is the way to go.
  • thumb
    Jan 24 2012: Its illegal for me to take a knife and stab people, but I can quite easily make one and do it without any real issue, its not even that much of an issue to purchase the materials for a fertilizer bomb and find the instruction manual on how to create it. That reality has been made clear many times in society.

    Just like every drug addict has a drug dealer and just like every prison is filled with blades and drugs, if someone wishes to do something they will find a way to do it despite its legality. Outlawing technology on the grounds that someone may abuse it concludes that we must remove all technology, even sticks and pointy rocks (don't want people making arrows now, do we....)
  • thumb
    Jan 24 2012: today you can make a gun without a 3d printer, but u cant make it that easy.welding is to joining metals but not to create dangerous objects, and also a person who does welding cannot create such designs even if he is a professional welder, and if a person has done that in welding then hes the only person who did that.
    but in our case, even a 10 year old child can have a gun printed by just downloading the detailed gun design.
    and can have number of copies :)
    ofcourse i too understand that the time is money and this printer is a great achievement. but if this doesnt have any limitations or not being monitored, it would not be usable.

    using a gun without a license is not permitted in any country, then just imagine using a gun producing machine ? wil that be approved ? definitely not. very recently i purchase some gps devices, and i could not clear those easily, i had to get approval from the ministry of defence to use that gps device with so many conditions.

    here i speak only about the gun, but there are other dangerous or not permitted products that can be printed and used here.

    printing listed products are fine but printing anything is :) "THINK"
    • thumb
      Jan 29 2012: metal milling machines have been around for a long time and some people use them to make weapons. For less than $1,000 I can find a metal lathe good enough to make a gun. But it's not what most sane people want to make.
      What we really need is jubilee. A change for the better in the way people think and behave toward each other.

      "Come-on people now, smile on each other everybody get together try to love on another right now!" Ann Murray
  • Jan 23 2012: Today I can make gun without a 3D printer (not that I intend to do so but I could make it). Saying that a 3D printer is not usable is like saying that welding is not usable. You can make a gun or a dangerous designs with welding but it has far more practical uses than just that.

    3D printers are a fast-prototyping dream. I work in a modeling lab, usually the structures in the lab are made in CNC mills in a workshop where there is a typical waiting time of about 3-8 weeks, if I want to make a small change to my model I can make it in far less time with a 3D printer than waiting for the product from the workshop (and may I remind you that time is money).

    3D printing is the present and it is practical, we probably have to wait a few more years for it to be usable by the average home-user.
  • thumb
    Jan 23 2012: There are ofcourse potential issues and difficulties to overcome, but many technologies undergo the same issues.
    Planes are a great example of this.
  • thumb
    Jan 23 2012: I'm not sure I understand why you think it's not practical. In the US, no one would be worried about printing a 3D model of a gun. Our government would allow it without blinking.

    I've never been to Sri Lanka, do you think your government would ban 3D printing from the public?
  • Feb 6 2012: I think home 3D printing will happen; as for people printing weapons...even if you print a gun you need to get hold of ammo to put in it, firing blanks isn’t much use! To be honest if someone is motivated enough they can get hold of a gun without the expense of having to buying a printer to do it. I think most people would be surprised at how few people would really want to do this anyway.....The world might seem bad sometimes, but most people are quite normal. Yes people on here say it would be the first thing they do if they had one, but most people wouldn't know where to start, or what to do with it if they managed! As for the copy rights/patent issues, there is no way to stop it, it might be possible to add some sort of authentication in to the process or 'finger print' into the product as with software; but plenty of that is copied and Microsoft still seem to scrape by with a small profit ;) . Small scale producers would be hit most but that’s the way the design world works security will be key..
  • Feb 1 2012: 3D printers are already being used by criminals.
    Using a 3D printer you can perfectly remake the plastic card input of an ATM machine, put some custom electronics in it and you have a non-recognizable skimming device.

    It's not about worrying what 'bad' people can do with this new technique, as said before, think of knives.

    What would be very wrong, is if everything should come to us with a procedure. How would that help this new technology of evolving and changing our future lives? It would only get slowed down immensely.
    The internet is also open. Therefore it's also used to do wrong things, but putting restrictions on it is just not the way to go (think of SOPA).

    Speaking of, 3D printing does mean everybody can reproduce copyrighted designs even easier. There's no way everything can be checked upon if it's legal or not. Therefore it's recommended we, or designers of 3d printable objects, should start thinking of how to tackle this problem. Not following the footsteps of the music, film and books industry.
  • thumb
    Jan 28 2012: yeah.. :) thnx fr the talks folks :) we should pray that the size should not be limited :)
  • Jan 28 2012: With all technology comes great responsibility. One of these responsibilities is researching human behaviour, so that there is no need to create a gun in the first place. Babies are not born with the need to create guns. Every thing a person knows is learned.

    This technology, like the internet, gives more power to the individuals. Which is all of us, on Earth and beyond.

    No one left behind.
  • thumb
    Jan 26 2012: I don't think the 'gun' thing would be such a big issue. I'm sure something will be figured out to solve that problem.
    I mean when electronic items like laptops and mobiles were introduced no one was concerned that you can make a potentially harmful bomb out of it.
  • thumb
    Jan 25 2012: Hi, I think the technology is too crude at this time, but within 5-years it should be developed that any home could be able to print a plastic part/toy/jewelry ... whatever as they want. But most home printers will probably be restricted to maybe 30cm x 30cm x 30cm ... or smaller. I also think there will be places like FedEx/Kinkos that will have 3D Plastic Printing available too. ITMT, I've just gotten my own 3D Touch Plastic Printer and am learning how to get the best quality prints from this machine to enable me to design and manufacture custom parts for others ... and posting saleable robot kits on my own website where I also share some simpler design files for other home hobbists to print their own parts. htt:// and

    Home hobby robotics is the theme of my RoboToons Robot Cartoons ... diving into 3D Plastic Printing only adds to the fodder of fun for future RoboToons Robot Cartoons ...
    • thumb
      Jan 29 2012: it would be so great if we could scan a part, like a screw or plastic replacement cover and print it out! It would save time and $, gas and human energy. It would be super for artists and designers. It will destroy UPS, FED-X etc. We so need big open--air markets in the US...
  • Jan 25 2012: I had the same thought as you will i was watching the talk.
    But i think that there is far more to gain from this technology then there is to loose.
    I wrote and article on it if you want to have a read.