Apr. 29, 2015 | By Simon

Aside from helping advance production methods in multiple industries ranging from creating custom racecar parts to superhero-inspired prosthetic arms, perhaps one of the best - and most overlooked - attributes of 3D printing is in its ability to bring together people all over the world.  

Whether these newly-established ‘communities’ and their members are working together to solve a problem with the end-goal of 3D printing the solution or are simply just sharing open source files from across the world, the conversations would have likely never happened if it wasn’t for the increase in accessibility to 3D printers.  

One of the more recent open source projects that is helping bring together an international community of bird lovers who also happen to love 3D printers is called Printednest.

The Printednest bird feeder/nests are designed to help increase the number of birds in urban areas through the use of urban-inspired bird house designs that are able to be locally produced using additive manufacturing technologies.

“Cornerstone of our philosophy is feedback from our users who are considered part of the team - we call it open cloud design,” says the Printednest team.  

“In our opinion there is no perfect design, no flawless product. 3D printing technology is evolving, perfecting itself; future generations are going to be bigger, better and they will be produced much faster than they are now.”

The team’s eco-friendly, egg-shaped bird nest designs are capable of being produced in any combination of color or material depending on a user’s taste.  Whether the goal is to contrast an urban structure or blend in, the simple designs are easy to customize and produce.      

Since the Printednest team launched the open source birdnest designs on Thingiverse, the bird shelters have been printed all over the world; there are currently over 87 bird feeders in 65 cities covering 20 countries - and the numbers are expected to continue to grow.  

Those with access to a 3D printer can download the bird nest at the Printednest site or over on Thingiverse.  Those without access to a 3D printer can either purchase a printed model or send the file to a third-party 3D printing service such as 3D Hubs or Shapeways and have it customized to their liking.  For those that choose to purchase a pre-printed birdhouse directly from Printednest, the nest will come printed in biodegradable PLA.

“3D printing technology as a way of developing a product which is constantly evolving and being perfected based on errors of previous prototypes, much as living organisms are,” adds the Printednest team.  



Posted in 3D Printing Applications


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willi wrote at 4/30/2015 1:16:12 AM:

It's a pretty design but I pity the bird that gets a claw stuck in the holes or nests in spring before summer heat melts PLA prints..

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