A few weeks ago the Economist ran a briefing on 3D printing and it’s effects on mass production, alongside an equally good leader article. While it is general in its nature, there are elements in the article about jewellery manufacturing.
Overall, the article both provides a current snapshot of the readily available state of the art in rapid manufacturing, as well as introducing to the general public how current trends in 3D printing are affecting the way commercial and industrial goods are manufactured. They’ve even mentioned in passing a commonly reiterated point about 3D printing’s particular strength in the area of small scale mass production versus using traditional mass production on short product runs.
I’m listing it here as a useful reference for those jewellery CAD/CAM users who may want somewhere to start when communicating to others what the fuss is about with 3D printing.
i.materialise published an article in their blog not too long ago which I feel is too valuable a lesson for CAD modellers who are serious about 3D printing.
But, just like I normally do here, I don’t normally post these things without adding my own additional advice:
<UPDATE – The original article has been updated to include some more accessible schemes and programmes not previously mentioned.>
BBC Business News recently aired a segment on How Crafts Workers are Learning to Sell their Work. In the segment, both the mentors and the craftsmen highlighted the importance of learning business skills. The mentors also pointed out the balancing act required to stay a luxury manufacturer without devoting all your time on building the brand. While the examples provided were silversmithing and leatherwork, this is every bit as true for a new jewellery business.
Walpole’s Brands of Tomorrow mentoring scheme mentioned in the video is an interesting one for ambitious luxury craft designers, but highly competitive (as you can see from the description on their own site). Since not everyone is aiming for the top end luxury market, I think it’s worth sharing some of the other UK business training schemes and support out there for craftsmen and budding jewellery businesses.
<Update- The publishers got in contact with me after writing this review, and helped me with some corrections to some of the publishing information and dates. The article has been amended accordingly.>
A few weeks ago, I discovered a book called Designing Jewelry with Rhino by Eliania Rosetti being out of Brazil. Since it’s become clear that more CAD jewellers need to know about this book, I’ve written a brief review here.
The nice people at the CNC Cookbook blog have put together a valuable article of good starting up tips for new users of CNC mills. Many of these tips and pieces of advice are things I wish I had been told when I acquired my first mill.
As August is normally a slow news month for most manufacturers, this seems to be the time when bloggers and journalists are forced to get creative with content and pieces.
Shapeways’ blog has quite cleverly used this time to start a series on intellectual property rights and protections. So far they’ve run two articles– the first on the meaning of the words Copyright, Patent, and Fair Use; the second on the specifics of fair use. It looks to be a useful guide for those who wish to make money out of 3D printing on the internet, so it is straight up our alley.
Today I discovered a wonderful resource put together by the University of the West of England in Bristol.
They have assembled a series of electronic archives for their enamel collections which are openly accessible to the public. There are two key visual databases: vitreous enamel and innovation in enamel.
These are well worth a browse if you like your jewellery to have colour. The pages take a little bit of time to load, but they are worth it.