Remember Makerbot, the company that took 3D printing to the next level a few years back? Well, some of their former employees are taking it one step further. And by that, we mean industrial scale!
Ex-Makerbot employees—Max Friefled, Oliver Ortlieb, Patrick Deem, and Jonathan Schwartz—have come together to create a Brooklyn-based rapid manufacturing system using, of course, Makerbots. One hundred and twenty-seven of them, to be exact! Want to see the fleet of printers in action? Check out this video.
This level of manufacturing power has the team printing 3D objects on the fly—so far, they’ve printed over 25,000 pieces for clients like Viacom, Universal, even Chipotle. The group calls themselves Voodoo Manufacturing and have raised $300,000 to build their 3D printing shop. Even more impressive is that the orders keep coming in and they are currently turning a profit, a testament to the power of making things quickly.
“Our core mission is to empower people (makers/creators) of this world to go forth and make what you thought was impossible,” Friefled tells TechCrunch. “We want to bridge the gap between the desktop 3D printer and the factories abroad.By making 3D printing a viable and effortless manufacturing solution, we want to help make people’s wildest dreams come to life.”
The Voodoo team looks to solve a significant problem that 3D printing still has to overcome out in the real world: small-scale manufacturing. Right now, there aren’t enough printers in the world to keep up with the demand that industrial factories deal with day in and day out. But that doesn’t worry the team one bit.
“People say that desktop 3D printers are not reliable enough to operate at this [industrial] scale. At Voodoo, we disagree,” says Friefled. “We have achieved what others thought was impossible. Because we are a factory born from software, we can run our 127 printers with a single person.” A single person having the same production power as an entire assembly line? We’re really living in the future now!
As their website says, Voodoo Manufacturing was built by and for designers, innovators, and entrepreneurs who are looking to bring their ideas to life. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? It’s almost as if everyone is coming up with new and innovative ideas to help make their dreams a reality. Shouldn’t you be getting in on the action, too?
Photo credit: TechCrunch