Gold or silver jewelery created with a 3D printer and with the design you prefer. By Spring and Wonder, a service of Shapeways ♦
3D Jewelry made in gold 14 carat? This is what Shapeways offers its customers (only in U.S.) by Spring and Wonder. And it does so through a process that is a mix of old and new techniques combined together. How it works: as for all other materials, namely silver, brass, bronze and steel, we start from the drawing. Which takes the form of wax with a 3D printer with high resolution. The next step is to put the model in a container where it is poured liquid plaster. When the plaster settles, the wax is dissolved with heat and remains a mold which is subsequently filled with molten gold. Once cooled and hardened, just break the chalk and then wipe and polish by hand the object to give it that sheen typical of gold jewelery. Where is the news? In the material. In fact, if the 3D technology has now become a habit for jewelers and designers to prototype, design complex shapes with geometries that are not possible through the traditional molds, now this option is also extended to the most precious metal. With some adjustments in the printing process. So did Nervous System, an art and design firm based in Somerville specialized in jewelry and accessories, to produce a bracelet in 18k gold.The process is based on interlocking components.
It is a system, called Kinematics, for printing 4D that creates complex foldable shapes, composed of a minimum of ten up to a thousand articulated modules that fit together to construct mechanical and dynamics structures. Each component is rigid, but the aggregate becomes a flexible set. But the assembly is not manual: hinge mechanisms are directly connected and printed in the 3D machine. The use of gold has been made possible by the Direct Metal Laser Sintering technology of Cooksongold, which transforms the metal powder in indivisible compounds. There remains a problem: cost. For example, a pendant Shapeways 2.5 cm x 2.5 cm x 2.5 cm will spend about a thousand dollars. Not exactly cheap. Then you can settle for a 24-carat gold plating as that of Shootdigital, which produces 3D prints in nickel, black nickel, silver, copper and rhodium (platinum) and gold.