Why Toy Manufacturers Should Consider 3D Printing
3D printing is an excellent tool used for additive manufacturing and making spare parts. Because of this, a maker can produce spare parts to repair the ones that are no longer manufactured. It is widely used in various industries, including the automotive and toy industries. The latter, in particular, uses this technology to repair toys, produce missing parts, or manufacture custom toys. It is also used to recreate or restore old toys.
Many companies are focused on repairing toys, and this segment of the industry is expected to grow and evolve in the coming years. With the rise of 3D printing in the toy industry, it will be no surprise if 3D printers become part of the daily production process.
In France, 3D printers called Dagoma have begun a project known as Toy Rescue. Their objective is to reduce the number of toys that are thrown away due to disrepair. Some of the toys that they fix either have missing or broken parts. Through 3D printing, they can manufacture spare parts that will make the toy look and function as good as new.
After doing their research, they have narrowed down the most broken toys or missing parts over the past four decades. Thanks to their work, there are existing STL files for these parts, which can be easily 3D printed. Since most broken toys are made from plastic, it is easy to recreate their parts using existing 3D printing technology. Detailed works can be done using resin technologies, like DLS or Polyjet.
Toy manufacturers are also beginning to show interest in 3D printing. For example, Toys’R’Us is collaborating with PieceMaker Technologies to install 3D printers in their stores so that customers can create personalised toys.
Soon enough, it will be possible for you to casually go to your local toy shop, design a custom toy, and print it in a short span of time. In hindsight, you can say that the future of toy manufacturing lies in 3D printing.
Intellectual property in the world of 3D printing is a serious topic. Before you reproduce an existing object, you need to take its source into consideration, namely its 3D file. Since you will be using a 3D printer to fix a toy, that means you will be manufacturing a part of an existing toy. Be mindful of this since you do not own the design of the toy and its components.
If you are interested in printing something with 3D files you got from a scan, chances are the object is protected, and the manufacturing company has rights over it. Pushing through with producing it can be considered counterfeit reproduction. A great alternative is to make a new 3D file using 3D modelling software.
There may be instances when the reproduction of a projected object is not considered a counterfeit. Some of these exceptions include getting prior authorisation from the manufacturer that holds the rights. So if you manage to obtain permission from the owner to replicate the parts, you are free to 3D print the ones you need.
3D printing is an innovative way to obtain the missing parts you need for a broken toy. By creating your own 3D files, you can customise any toy of your choice. To make things easier for you, you can consult a company that specialises in 3D printing in Cambridge.
3D Quick Printing offers a wide range of 3D printing services. All you need to do is send us your CAD data, .stl file, or step files. Just give us an hour or so, and we will provide you with a quote. We will also send you an email to notify you that your order has been printed and is ready to be sent. To learn more about our 3D printing services in London, contact us today!