The MakerBot Replicator 2 desktop 3-D printer in Company Lab's office builds a nut and bolt out of thermoplastic. The printer head heats a spool of the plastic until it melts then deposits it in layers onto a build platform. Following a pattern guided by a nearby computer, the platform lowers by fractions of an inch as each successive layer is completed.
Photo by Angela Lewis .
published Sunday, February 3rd, 2013
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When people see Mike Bradshaw's 3-D printer in action for the first time, there's usually a rush of in-drawn breath followed by an astonished silence.