Jan 30, 2015 | By Simon

While we’ve certainly seen our fair share of how 3D printing has helped revolutionize industries and technologies ranging from medicine to custom homemade products made from 3D scans, additive manufacturing processes have long been used for prototyping various product designs for decades before 3D printing really “took off” as we currently know it today.

When considering why companies invested in large and expensive 3D printers to put in their prototyping workshops, it becomes clear that although the machines were considerably more expensive than they are today they were still cost effective when developing multiple iterations of product designs...a step that is absolutely necessary for producing a well-received product.  

Thanks to cheaper 3D printers that exist on the market today, this same process has trickled out of large design firms and manufacturers and onto the desks of small design teams and one-man shops to develop their own products within extremely tight budgets.

A recent example of how 3D printing was used to develop a product design can be seen in a new Kickstarter campaign from Moment, makers of the Moment Case.  

The case, which is made for the iPhone 6, is inspired by the experiences associated with more traditional camera equipment seen with traditional SLR or DSLR cameras with an included shutter button, lens and strap attachment.  In order to ensure that their design was ready for mass manufacturing after a successful Kickstarter campaign however, the design and engineering team had to exhaust all design and engineering flaws using 3D printing to produce multiple versions of their finished models.

Starting with models sculpted from wood and smaller 3D printed parts, the design team iterated through roughly 20 different design concepts over a five-month period with the goal of shrinking the overall size and refining the functions with each iteration.   

Additionally, material studies were performed and through the process, a wide variety of materials, shapes and forms were created to see which combinations best suited the final design without straying too far from their original vision of combining an old-school camera for a modern piece of technology.  

The final product design, which has currently raised over $200,000 from their initial $100,000 goal on Kickstarter, enables iPhone 6 users to have more control over their mobile photography.  Among other features included in the final design include a smart lens interface with the option for multiple lens options, a sturdy rubber grip, an embedded shutter button to make taking pictures easier and an included camera strap feature built within the case.  

“We set out on a mission to make the camera in our pockets, the best that it can be,” said the Moment team on their Kickstarter page.   “By empowering mobile picture takers with better lenses, an app, and a case we believe that together we can continue to make the world a happier place, one picture at a time.”

You can purchase a Moment case starting at $49 over on Kickstarter.  

 

 

Posted in 3D Printing Applications

 

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