3D digital printing … of shoes #ppma

a digitally printed trainer on display at the PPMA show today

a digitally printed trainer on display at the PPMA show today

Whilst visiting the PPMA and TCT Rapid prototyping show at the NEC today I came across this from Clarks Shoes – 3D printed shoes, I kid you not!  They even have a version that is flexible like a real trainer.

 

a fantastically detailed 3D printed ladies shoe
a fantastically detailed 3D printed ladies shoe

This is quite fantastic!  Actually they use 3D printing or “additive manufacturing” to design shoes in the UK, and email the design to China where the shoe is printed out (takes 6 hours) and all prototypes using actual shoe making materials have to match the printed version.  Apparently it cuts down on lots of mistakes where you cannt get the detail of shoes form a CAD drawing.

Fantastic innovation from Clarks!