A few years ago, I was one of the original members of LVL1, Louisville’s hackerspace/makerspace. One of our first prize acquisitions was a MakerBot, which was a 3-D printer for hobbyists. I don’t remember the cost, but I do remember a couple of guys dedicating at least one, if not more, all night building session to assemble it.
Now it seems the technology is about to go full circle. The hobbyist level printers are getting more sophisticated. The commercial machines are getting more competitive in price, and the line between the two is becoming more fuzzy all the time.
At the time that we got our first 3D printer at LVL1, many of us hypothesized the commercialization and industrial uses of 3D printing, but I am not sure we expected the technology to improve so fast.
Yet another lesson learned… better not blink or you will be left behind.