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Paper Mache Goes High Tech… Paper-Based 3D Printing

August 26, 2014
3D Printed Paper

I once spent weeks in middle school art class attempting to paper mache a Christmas tree.. I wish I had had a cleaner, life-like outcome.  Now imagine paper mache without the mess and fuss –  a less known additive manufacturing technology, selective deposition lamination, involves gluing together colored office paper sheets to produce an object.  Mcor Technologies sells its version, the IRIS paper-based 3D printer which is seen as an eco-friendly alternative to other materials.  And more colorful. reported, “Because the printer’s ‘ink’ is paper, it can be printed in every color imaginable using Mcor’s International Colour Consortium of over 1 million color shades. This gives the IRIS a major lead over standard desktop 3D printers that print in plastic filament which usually comes in a very limited selection of colors.”

And as the above image shows, the results are pretty realistic.  In fact, one Mcor sales manager was reportedly ordered by airport security to check his paper-printed hammer prototype because it was too close for comfort.

Unfortunately for me, not only did the technology come too late, I suspect my art teacher would have failed me for “copying.”

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