"[With the advent of desktop manufacturing technologies] I believe more and more people feel empowered to create new products, from smart watches to custom zipper pulls for hoodies. And thanks to [avenues such as Kickstarter], you can tap into demand for smaller-batch products well in advance of release. Still, there’s not a sophisticated way to manufacture 1,000 pieces that look like they’re consumer products.As barreiras actuais:
I would like the future of manufacturing to embrace this middle ground. I want to see custom manufacturers who can do small runs at price parity with large manufacturers."
"First of all, there’s a new group of people who want to make things who are not mechanical engineers—they’re designers.Uma alternativa "Future Scope"
They go to a contract manufacturer, but the factory people want to work with 3D computer aided design (CAD) programs that the designers don’t know. The process ends up requiring too much customer support to make it worth [the manufacturers’] while.
Additionally, [it costs manufacturers money] to tool up a machine, pay someone to translate the design into [the CAD program] Solid Works and pay the CNC operator and the person who does the CAM (translating design into paths the machine can follow).
To make it worth their time, they often charge a price that is untenable to a small-batch manufacturer."