Ponoko has launched Personal Factory 4, a new way to buy, sell, and make custom goods. With this new system they have partnered with CloudFab, to get a wide range of materials in which print your models and designs.
The new 3D printing materials are durable plastic, superfine plastic, rainbow ceramic, stainss steel and gold plate.
In addition, Google and Ponoko host a contest to show how to use Google Sketchup for Ponoko 3D printing. Read it here at Sketchup Blog:
The prizes for first place alone are worth $1500.
Personal Factory 4 is the world's only system offering instant online pricing to make your projects using a combination of 2D and 3D digital making technologies and open-source electronics hardware. With no setup fees and no minimum order sizes, you can now make custom electronic gadgets, homeware, fashion and furniture in the comfort of your home - and sell them to the world.
In an exclusive agreement, Ponoko adds the CloudFab network of 3D printers to its global network of laser cutters.
Ponoko's Personal Factory 4 also offers new starter kits for 3D printing from Alibre, Autodesk 3ds Max, Blender (freeware), Google SketchUp (freeware) and SolidWorks. Other CAD software can also be used to get instant online pricing for STL, DAE and VRML 97 design files. Personal Factory 4 is another evolution in Ponoko's vision of a digital factory in every home, business and school, powered by its personal making system.
Ponoko's personal making system is available as an online subscription: Free or Prime. A Prime account is $39 per month and includes lower pricing, faster delivery and a design quality check before you commit to your custom order. Importantly, there are no setup fees or minimum order sizes for anyone to make things, so there is no entry barrier.
All Personal Factory 4 features are available now from Ponoko's U.S. hub, and will be rolled out to their worldwide digital factory network during 2011.
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