Feb 2, 2017 | By David

We’ve definitely reported on some weird and wonderful uses of 3D printing in the past, but a recent development from a group calling itself Useless Duck Company has really upped the stakes. It brings the worlds of 3D technology, food, and innuendo together, with a product that gleefully defies logic or purpose while wholeheartedly embracing the ambiguities of language- a 3D printed Salad Tossing Machine. From now on, no kitchen can possibly be complete without this unique appliance, which will take pride of place in the cupboard of any chef worth their salt, alongside the garlic press, the apple corer, and of course, the melon baller.

The Useless Duck Company’s YouTube channel has plenty of other examples of its zany and ingenious handiwork. These include a Toilet Paper Machine, for dispensing toilet paper more effectively, a Cocktail Shaking Robot, for shaking cocktails more effectively, and an alarm clock based on the hilarious Adult Swim series, Rick and Morty. In response to a request from one of its Twitter followers, and perhaps seeing a gap in the market that could be filled, the company set to work on its latest invention, a 3D printed machine that can toss a salad.

Hoping to improve upon manual salad tossing techniques, the guys at UDC decided that 3D printing could be used in order to produce the parts required for their bold new project. As shown in the video, while the parts appear relatively basic, the UDC duck logo is clearly visible, demonstrating the ease with which 3D printing technology can be used for distinctive design and branding.

The structure of their machine is relatively straightforward. A central cross bar moves up and down, moving the two spoons attached to either side of it. There are 3 separate modes, depending on what kind of salad is being used and what level of intensity is required. The first mode, Toss, sees both the salad and the bowl itself being propelled over 5 metres across the room. A more gentle setting, Toss and Mix, gently throws the chopped vegetables around inside the bowl, with only a minimum of spillage. Turbo Mode is a much more vigorous toss, perfect for taco salads, as Mike points out. The multi function green and red buttons at the top are all that is required to work this indispensable culinary time saver.

Thus far, the unit tested in the video is the only one that has been produced, but the success of the demonstration means it is unlikely to stay that way. The work of the Useless Duck Company is an example of the potentially limitless applications for 3D printing, and its utility for hobbyists and non-experts as well as the manufacturing industry. The increasing accessibility of the technology means that we are bound to see many more hilarious projects like this in the near future.



Posted in Fun with 3D Printing



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