4 Insanely Cool Projects Families Can Make With A 3D Printer

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Hewlett Packard. I received compensation for participating in this campaign but all opinions are my own.
HP Sprout #GoMakeThings
Holiday breaks and weekends are fantastic times for families to spend special moments together and to work on creative ideas with each other. If you want to take this time to the next level, try some of these fun and out of the box ideas that I recently worked on with my family. 

HP Sprout #GoMakeThingsAll that was needed was our Sprout by HP, a Dremel 3D printer, and a few other small materials. These ideas can take a boring weekend and turn it into one filled with a ton of memories.

If you aren't familiar with the Sprout or 3D printer, let me tell you about how I used them. The Sprout is a computer workstation that, besides being a great all around family computer, is able to easily scan objects in 3D. The Dremel 3D printer can then print out those objects using a plastic like filament to create whatever you can think up. 

These two machines are so much fun to work with for the whole family. Basically, you and your kids can let your imagination run wild! For more information on The Sprout by HP and the Dremel 3D printer, make sure and click HERE

When you are done creating, share your family's work on social media using #GoMakeThings to give others some inspiration (and get some more of your own)!

HP Sprout #Gomakethings
1. Create a 3D Lithophane From a Standard Photo.

What is a lithophane? It is a 3D copy of a photograph that is made to be seen when light shines through from behind. It is a really fun window decoration for your house as well! I
scanned in a picture of my son with the Sprout and then used a free website tool to convert the image to 3D. From there I just used the 3D printer to print it off. You can see from the picture above how detailed it is. Search "3D print a lithophane" to find more in depth tips. 

HP Sprout #Gomakethings
2. 3D Scan Your Kid's Crafts and Print Them Out For A Permanent Memento.

Some crafts that your kids create hold together pretty well, but there are also temporary ones that fall apart easily. You can make these last longer by scanning them in and printing them out. We made some fun shaped pancakes, but obviously we couldn't keep them. We scanned them into the Sprout with it's automatic turntable. From there, we used the editing program to emboss the base with the date and then let the printer do it's work. You can do this for most of your kid's crafts. We even shrunk the craft down to half the original size so it would be easier to store.

HP Sprout #GoMakethings
3. Create Fun and Useful Gadgets From Scratch.

There are plenty of websites where people have uploaded all the files you need to print out really cool items like this Star Wars Han Solo phone case. There are even pre made basic models of many gadgets that you can customize yourself. All we did was download the free file from thingiverse.com, load it into the Sprout's printing program, printed it out, and then spray painted it gray. It is so fun for kids to be a part of this because they can see it happen, from beginning to end, in only a few hours. Of course, most of that time is waiting for the gadget to print out, so you can be doing other things while the printer is doing the hard work for you.

HP Sprout #GoMakethings
4. Create Handmade Gifts For Holidays And Other Special Events.

Whether it's Christmas, Easter, birthdays, or another special occasion, you can print out some great personalized gifts for family and friends. For the ornaments above, we printed them out and then set our kids loose on hand painting them with plastic model paint. Was it a work of art? To the grandparents it was!

Let me know what questions you have and make sure and check out the Sprout and search #GoMakeThings on social media. You are sure to find many more ideas to use with your family!

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