Are you not exactly a small, medium, large or extra large type of person, someone that needs more choices than soft or firm, black or white? I could be talking about anything from clothing to mattresses or anything else that needs just the right fit.
Or I could be talking about sex toys.
We’re seeing custom-fitted everything these days, and with 3D printers and the various apps that are driving creative businesses in their creation of custom one-off products, the trend is only accelerating. And if these new businesses don’t meet the needs of the consumer, there is now always the DIY approach with a home 3D printer.
And, yes, I’m still talking about sex toys.
Along these lines comes the idea behind Tom Nardone’s MakerLove website. While he is not yet to the point of selling customized, 3D-printed sex toys from his site, he has set it up to be the Thingiverse of the sex toy world — a repository of downloadable designs for people to print their own sex toys at home. Sort of a Dildoverse, if you will.
Narone knows it is often embarrassing for people to purchase sexual products, even online where customers worry about how the shipping box will be labeled, what the postman will think, who in the family will open the box when it arrives. With that in mind, back in 1998 he started Priveco.com, which runs eleven websites geared towards selling items that are embarrassing to buy–mostly sexual products. Now, he’s taken the entire logistics chain out of the process by facilitating the printing of the items in the privacy of one’s own home.
So, what kind of sex toys can you find on MakerLove? I’ll be discrete and not describe them, but I’ll give you the names of some: 3D Dildo, Organic Communicator, Hello Pussycat, Slender G-Spot Toy, Slender Pebble Vibe and the Rock and Roll Sex Toy. head over to his site to learn more if you are interested.
Now be careful, folks. Be very aware of the resolution of your 3D printer. Most hobbyists’ printers produce objects with some jaggedness to them, and you don’t want to have to head over to your doctor explaining your abrasions after your first outing with your new toy. If you have a low-res printer, you might consider sending the file over to an online 3D printing service for a smoother print, and a choice of a better material.
To all of you who just had a light bulb go off in your head with a great idea for a new sex toy, you’re in luck. MakerLove is having a design contest. The rules can be found here. On thing ti note is that they really want things that vibrate. This is accomplished by designing a hole in the model where a “bullet” (the vibrator) they’ve selected can be placed. If they like the design, you’ll get $50 and your design will be added to their showcase (only $25 if you don’t make it vibrate).
I think that Nardone has definitely hit on an up and coming business, as the sex toy business is huge. This exact idea won’t be a moneymaker, but I’m sure he’ll leverage it somehow with his other businesses and will take advantage of new technology to create new opportunities. I’ve got some great ideas for his next steps, which I’m certain he and others already have thought of. For one, a can see a specially-designed web interface for a non-technical user to design the size, shape, texture and color of their sex toy, and after clicking to order it will ship to their home. I also see a big business in licensing an exact replica of certain body parts of porn stars, or even regular celebrities for that matter. Imagine how well a Brad Pitt you-know-what might sell. But, I can also see the scandals unfolding too. What if those who bed famous people, slip a 3D scanner app-enabled phone under the sheets, and then sell the specs on the black market, paparazzi style, to sex toy makers; or even just distribute the design to the Dildoverses of the net? And you thought 3D printed guns are controversial!
We’ll keep you abreast of all the stimulating advances to come.
H/t: Venture Beat