Vstone’s recently opened Robot Center has a new service that will hopefully lead to some interesting new custom robots. Customers can now have their 3d modeled parts (using the common STL file type) printed into ABS plastic via their 3D printing service, which starts at 3990 JPY ($40 USD) plus the cost of materials. The printer’s volume (203 x 203 x 300mm) should be more than enough room for most designs. There’s also an aluminum CNC machine which can cut metal panels (e.g. for custom servo brackets).
If there’s one thing that’s been holding back custom robots besides greater autonomy, it’s that builders are often restricted when it comes to designing and building exoskeletons. Thanks to easy access to 3d printing technology like this, hobbyists who take the time to learn 3d CAD skills can potentially engineer both the insides and outside of their robot to look however they want them to. Of course, humanoid robots aren’t the only ones that could benefit from custom exteriors – Vstone’s own Beauto Chaser and Beauto Balancer robot kits could also be spruced up, too.
Vstone is no stranger to creating custom designs using this technology; from Takeshi Maeda’s Omni-Zero series to their involvement in Team Osaka’s VisiON soccer bots, which are built from 3d printed parts.
[source: Impress Robot Watch]