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Anyone for a 3D-printed car?
Mingo's Mind's profile photoRalph De Arazoza's profile photoAndrew Harpin's profile photoRaymond Macias's profile photo
that's not a car, it's a coffee bean.
3d printed car magically becomes 2d printed car in any accident too.
I am starting to dislike the overuse of 3D printing headlines. It's just like "cloud" many years ago  - seemed everyone needed to have that word in their headlines one way or the other.

Bottom line: this car is being built in many separate pieces, some of which use 3D printing. Other parts, such as the engine, cannot be 3D printed (they will use metal). There is some benefit to printing some of these plastic parts, such as the dashboard. Otherwise, I don't know if this is a good idea for the car overall. At the least, the headline is misleading as we cannot print an entire car. 
+Ralph De Arazoza Great point. 

I don't understand the advantage of 3D printing over traditional molding for mass production. Can anyone shed any light?
By any chance had anyone played the Sims free play? I've seen that car in the game. 
I doubt jobs would be in any jeopardy -- not if it takes over 3 months to print one car.
+Andrew Harpin Yes there are, but my understanding is that they produce something akin to powdered metal for creating prototypes. No way that they can print something as complex as a car engine. Not yet at least.

+Andrew Lloyd According to the original article from, they give two examples of advantages:

1) The bumper: "it affords the precise control that would be impossible with sheet metal...the printer can add thickness and rigidity to specific sections. When applied to the right spots, this makes for a fender that’s as resilient as the one on your Prius, but much lighter."

2) The dashboard: "when he prints the car’s dashboard, he’ll make it with the ducts already attached without the need for joints and connecting parts. What would be dozens of pieces of plastic and metal end up being one piece of 3-D printed plastic."
+Ralph De Arazoza Not everything is sintered, there multiple techniques. Different parts would probably have different requirements. The engine block itself could probably be sintered, but the cylinder liners, pistons and rods would require a different technique.

Many Aerospace manufacturers are looking at additive manufacturing for their systems, where casting is not possible, due to regulation.

For automotive, it's less interesting as the volumes are much higher and the print speed tends to be quite low atm.
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