Shapeways had experimented with a flexible material last year but it unfortunately wasn’t quite ready for prime time. They moved on to a black, rubber-like material called Black Elasto Plastic, which also ended up being discontinued.
But great news: Shapeways continued working on the original flexible material all this time and it’s finally almost ready for order. Here it is in action:
The folks over at i.materialise are also on to their own squishable material. They are only on their initial tests (update: available to manufacturing and prototyping customers now), but here are some photos of the yet unnamed material —
without a video we’ll just have to assume that it unsquishes too (see update below).
And here is it working to stop a window door handle from noisily slamming against the wall:
Here’s to hoping that both these show up in the material selections at Shapeways and i.materialise in the very near future.
Update: Apparently, the flexible material from i.materialise is the very same TPU-92A-1 material that we wrote about earlier this month. Here’s the video we had published in that article:
3D printing services get flexible with materials
by Mark Fleming