January 26, 2013
Cheap 3D printers fuel home-printed sex toy 'phenomenon'
Dezeen Magazine takes a closer look at the demand for personalised sex toys that can be ordered online or printed at home and the companies who are going after this market —though "surface finish and materials" using this technology are still major drawbacks today.
... "The world of 3D-printed sex toys is growing rapidly and every day more and more brands pop up," says designer Jelle Plantenga of Dutch "gentlemen's jewellery" brand Velv'Or, which offers printed nylon products for men (top image). "It has the potential to grow very big".
"I think the future holds a lot for this industry," agrees Tom Nardone, founder of New York-based Makerlove, a site that offers vibrator designs that can be downloaded for free. "It's definitely growing; it's sort of a phenomenon. People want to avoid the embarrassment of getting these things in the mail." Nardone's designs were rebuffed by Thingiverse where he originally tried to sell them. "I had a conversation with their attorney," Nardone says. "He said 'we want to be open-source but we have to draw the line. You can't post that stuff here'."
... The mainstream 3D printing industry seems reluctant to talk about this nascent trend. Dezeen spoke to senior executives at two major printer manufacturers, both of whom said they were aware of the phenomenon but neither of whom wanted to speak on the record. One said: "What people do with our printers once they've bought them is up to them".
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