Dec.14, 2012

Maxi Gossamer, an SL artisan who recently discovered 3D printing brought her second life (virtual) jewelry to real life, via Shapeways. For many SL creator s this is a awesome way to print out their Secondlife creations. Gossamer designed 3D mesh files and then took those meshes and uploaded to Shapeways. Shapeways checked the design to see if it could be printed. So easy, isn't it. Gossamer can then choose different materials for her creations, from sterling silver, to bronze, gold and many other materials.

Gossamer printed her favorite Marrakech Heart out in sterling silver and it costs her 95 Euros. She is selling many of her creations online via Second Life Marketplace and Shapeways. She is now a jewelry seller in a real world, but she doesn't need to have all the storage of the real products. 3D printing is extremely useful for such a small production runs. All she needs to do is to upload the 3D mesh files to the marketplace, and only print it out when somebody makes a order. She wrote about her experiences in the blog:

I also had a few rings 3D printed to test detail levels and resolution, I'm learning as I go. I am most pleased with the Marrakech Heart, it's perfect and just how I imagined it. It's printed in glossy silver and polished by the Shapeways team. I will be oxidising/antiquing the heart to bring out the design and detail. I'll post more pics of the oxidised silver heart as soon as it's done.

 

I'm in a bit of a tizz about all this and the possibilities. I still have a lot to learn about how to get the best from 3D prints, for instance, how deep to etch in the designs to get the best and most accurate results for the real world. My Sea Anemone ring lost a bit of detail but right now I'm not sure if that's to do with the resolution of the Shapeways 3D wax printer or perhaps a little too much polishing or maybe I just didn't put deep enough etched detail in the model itself. Lots to learn.

(Images credit: Maxi Gossamer)

 

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