Staples becomes first major US retailer to sell 3D printer

By Shawn Knight
May 3, 2013
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  1. Interested in a fancy new 3D printer but don’t know where to start? Just hit the easy button – as in, Staples. That’s because the company today became the first major US retailer to start selling a 3D printer. You...

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  2. Wasn't Best buy selling 3d printers a few years ago?
  3. silence911

    silence911 Newcomer, in training

    And . . . the ink is going to cost more than the printer
  4. Darkshadoe

    Darkshadoe TechSpot Maniac Posts: 529   +97

    Tekkaraiden likes this.
  5. Tekkaraiden

    Tekkaraiden TechSpot Maniac Posts: 899   +52

  6. p51d007

    p51d007 TechSpot Booster Posts: 309   +41

    I've been in the photocopier repair business for 32 years. I can see it now...instead of getting calls for jams, smudges, streaks, squeaks....we'll start getting calls for "I printed a square and it came out a triangle". LOL
    LukeDJ, hammer2085 and JC713 like this.
  7. JC713

    JC713 TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 6,819   +884

    And you will need software that can make 3d models and that is compatible with 3d printers. That will be at least >$100.
  8. Sorftware? There is plenty of decent free software for 3d design
    Wendig0 likes this.
  9. You do not need any 'special' software to make the model. Almost all CAD and 3D modeling packages (including free ones like Blender or Google Sketch-up) can output an .STL file witch is the main file type used for these types of machines. Also, there are several resources where you can download and share models with other people such as thingiverse.com or shapeways.com. You are correct that professional CAD software is expensive, but there are a lot of free, open source options available as well.
    Wendig0 likes this.
  10. VitalyT

    VitalyT TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 1,662   +508

    It is a nice gimmick for 99% of possible buyers. It can only be justified for people who design small things. Most of what this printer can print costs almost nothing to buy, so to get the money back from even $1300 it may take 10 years, or most likely never for a person who will print something on occasion. And then considering the quality and the time to spend doing that...

    I don't think this is a practical future. Instead, we shall see many local shops with full-size, cutting-edge 3D printers from which one can order any stuff printed and then collect it. That will make sense...

    Hallo! Is my order still printing? - What did you order? - A 50" dildo. ? Yeah, it's still printing... unusual size for a,... sir, ahem, it looks more like a,... bazooka. Are you aware of the regulation for weapon printing? - It's for personal use! Yeah...
  11. It really doesn't they come in spindles of a plastic like material.
     
  12. If the price drops under $500, people will be all over it.
  13. So this is a nice PR fluff piece. What they don't tell you is that the cartridge is following the printer ink market. The cartridge is $100 to refill. Or $100 for every other color you want. I am sure there is something that prohibits reloading with cheaper material. So they are charging $100 for about $5 worth of plastic. Not to mention 3d systems had been suing a bunch of little 3d printer guys lately. That alone guarantees that I will Never spend a dime with this company. DB's supreme.
  14. LukeDJ

    LukeDJ TechSpot Addict Posts: 414   +112

    Why the hate? I think it's pretty cool. If ya don't want it, or ya can't afford it (me :p ) then don't buy it :)
  15. Railman

    Railman TechSpot Enthusiast Posts: 583   +78

    I want one. Very useful for model makers. You could make components which would be difficult to produce in traditional methods. For example scale model of the electrical gear under a locomotive. You could even produce scale models of real persons to populate a model railway.
  16. fimbles

    fimbles TechSpot Evangelist Posts: 1,249   +132

    Want one badly. but still slightly too expensive for me atm.
  17. Hope people don't start to print parts on these 3D-printers that they can later assemble into replica weapons such as guns.
  18. spydercanopus

    spydercanopus TechSpot Guru Posts: 802   +87

    We need Wozniak to make a comeback and design us some "printer interfaces" for these CAD programs.
  19. GeforcerFX

    GeforcerFX TechSpot Booster Posts: 325   +46

    I work at staples and all us easy techs at my store are talking about getting one from our dotcom. We wanna make custom phone and electronic cases, and some raspberry pi case's and what not.
  20. Guns require a barrel that can withstand massive pressures, I seriously doubt that the plastic used in these printers is anywhere near the strength you would need for a gun. I could make a gun from a metal pipe and some gasoline that would be far more durable. You can make a pipe bomb from things at your hardware store. The truth is that most people have no interest in causing others harm and the media makes us feel like everyone we don't know is a psychopath killer. Besides, it really isn't that hard to purchase a gun and if you're a criminal then you surely know other criminals who can easily get you an illegal weapon. In the end someone wanting to cause harm will find a way to do it, it isn't the tools (or weapons) that you should be worried about, it is the people who are choosing to use them for evil.
  21. spydercanopus

    spydercanopus TechSpot Guru Posts: 802   +87

  22. LukeDJ

    LukeDJ TechSpot Addict Posts: 414   +112


    This is both extremely entertaining and thought provoking :D :eek:
  23. avioza

    avioza Newcomer, in training Posts: 55   +15

    Yeah, I would have a sudden interest in 3d modeling. Miniatures for RPG's and tabletop games. Print it, prime it, paint it. I don't have enough time anymore to utilize it enough to justify $1300 but it would be fun.
  24. Dustyn

    Dustyn Newcomer, in training Posts: 31

    Amazing possibilities! Extremely unfortunate that there are bare foot red neck bango playing hicks who would want to use this type of technology to create weapons.... :|
  25. OortCloud

    OortCloud Newcomer, in training Posts: 34

    We can only begin to imagine the amount of waste plastic these things will produce if they become popular. The already pretty impressive Great Pacific Garbage Patch will be filled with billions of failed attempts and useless trinkets produced by people because they can now spam plastic from their homes.


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