WAY OF THE FUTURE: 3D printer owner Bob Claydon.
WAY OF THE FUTURE: 3D printer owner Bob Claydon. Kirstin Payne

Unusual item on display in show pavilion

USUALLY home to heritage arts and crafts, the Allora Show pavilion featured a slice of the future at the weekend, with Darling Downs Model Railway Club member Bob Claydon displaying his 3D printer.

The printer can be programmed to produce miniature models for his carnival-themed railway in minutes.

"A lot of people just don't comprehend how it works. I wouldn't have when I first got into train making," he said.

Using molten plastic, the printer can layer in the shape of almost anything from miniature porta loos to doorstops.

"I printed a new knob for my kitchen out of it when it broke," Mr Claydon said.

He simply drew it up on the computer and printed it.

The 3D printers start at $2000.

"Mine is the plug-and-play version," he said.

"You can draw for yourself or download off the internet."

Mr Claydon is also receiving a 3D scanner in March, which will allow him to replicate almost anything he wants to in plastic.

The science is also being developed for medical use but for now Mr Claydon will stick to his growing collection.


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