3D printing, or additive manufacturing, is the construction of a three-dimensional object from a CAD model or a digital 3D model. The term "3D printing" can refer to a variety of processes in which material is deposited, joined or solidified under computer control to create a three-dimensional object, with material being added together (such as plastics, liquids or powder grains being fused together), typically layer by layer.
In the 1980s, 3D printing techniques were considered suitable only for the production of functional or aesthetic prototypes, and a more appropriate term for it at the time was rapid prototyping. As of 2019, the precision, repeatability, and material range of 3D printing have increased to the point that some 3D printing processes are considered viable as an industrial-production technology, whereby the term additive manufacturing can be used synonymously with 3D printing. One of the key advantages of 3D printing is the ability to produce very complex shapes or geometries that would be otherwise impossible to construct by hand, including hollow parts or parts with internal truss structures to reduce weight. Fused deposition modeling (FDM), which uses a continuous filament of a thermoplastic material, is the most common 3D printing process in use as of 2020.

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  1. rhollister71

    3d printer guy needed.. for helping me reload

    I am looking for any 3D printer guys out there to possibly help me out. or many others too!! Long story short i am paralyzed from chest down, tho i get around well in a manual wheelchair. but have limited hand function especially my left.... I just started diving into reloading. All is well but...
  2. Gbirk

    New 3D printer - Trying out some designs

    Friday, I received a new 3D printer to play with. This is my 1st foray into 3D printing and design. I set the printer up Saturday morning and after a few YouTube videos and trial and error was able to do a test print of the included rabbit figurine. Hey! That's pretty cool! So, next thing...
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