Old Lyme-based Imagimod is launching a new iPad app to design and “print out” an action figure on a 3D printer.
The company launched a Kickstarter campaign last week to help fund the new product, with early ‘backers’ receiving perks like specialized virtual parts that can be used within their Mech Maker app to construct real customized action figures.
3D printers output objects designed on a computer by precisely layering melted plastic. The printers have been around for some time but up until recently have been priced out of reach for most consumers. But a number of companies, most notably Makerbot, have developed printers that can be purchased for less than $1500. One new startup is even aiming for a sub $300 printer.
Despite the advances in bringing this technology to consumers, to actually design and print an object requires some working knowledge of complex 3D modeling software.
Steve Lettieri, VP of Business Development for Imagimod, says the company hopes to make the process of creating three dimensional objects much easier for consumers.
“There is a desire to customize and create things, so what we’re trying to do at Imagimod is to create tools for people to make cool interesting stuff that they can print and play with,” Lettieri said.
The app offers a step-by-step process for designing the action figure, giving users the choice of various body styles, arms, legs, weapons, and other accessories. The app will come pre-loaded with a number of pre-designed components that can be pieced together to build a personalized mech action figure. When complete the user can upload the design to a 3D printing service or download the model and print it out on a supported consumer printer.
The company hasn’t yet set pricing for printing services, although a $150 contribution to their Kickstarter effort will come with a high quality multi-color printed mech figure. There will be no additional charge beyond in-app part purchases for printing out figures on home printers.