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(Hello Stratsys Replicator 3, probably retailing for like $20,000 or some nonsense)
Before there were cubes at staples and back in the day when kickstarter wasn’t synonymous as the half baked 3d printer shopping network there was the makerbot… and the reprap. For just about $800, unbelievably small beans at the time, you could have the ability to sometimes print 3d objects when your printer wasn’t broken or you managed to find filament by buying a cupcake 3d printer. Unlike the reprap which had zillions of variations that were all equally temperamental, the makerbot was both consistent and practical. Then they got stinking rich and boned the hobby market… Then Stratsys bought them….
But seriously, can you blame them? Somebody is freaking rich because they realized how much people love the idea of sticking a glue gun on the most temperamental piece of machinery in their house so they could make things they could have gotten at the dollar store! The thing is that this tech cought on pretty quikly, especially since it’s open source thanks to the reprap foundation. In fact you can have a 3d printer for $299, the printrbot simple, as long as you don’t mind fishing line being a critical component in it’s ability to function.
Obviously it’s a horrible piece of crap that looks like it was made by Da Vinci while he was sniffing paint but for just 299 you can print yourself a little yoda head!
(except it won’t look that good because your printer is made out of wood and fishing line)
Now going back to the whole “kickstarter being synonymous with being a 3d printer shopping network thing,” it really kind of is. Look at it for a few minutes and see how long it takes you to find a 3d printer. You won’t have to look for very long because that’s like all kickstarter even does! The fact is that the replicator 2 is expensive and only a fraction better then most, I repeat, “Most” open source 3d printers that are coming out for less then $1000. They did a good thing for the industry though and I don’t think we would be here without them. Bye makerbot! Have fun being even more overpriced or being flat out dissolved!