Maker/Development
MiniCut2D lets users take baby steps to 3D printing glory

While 3D printers are all the rage these days, they still remain somewhat of a mystery to the layman. Expensive machines coupled with complex programs ultimately build an extremely intimidating process most people would be scared off by.

MiniCut2D is aimed at those who are interested in what 3D printing can do, but lack the advanced skills necessary to transform what they have in their mind into a physical object. The product utilizes a hot wire that cuts hard polystyrene foam usually used as insulation material. The process is accessible to most because it only requires either a manually drawn image or a silhouette off of the Internet to help guide the wire to cut the shape necessary. The thickness of the material gives the object its third dimension as a result, and allows even beginners to create things such as words, planes, packing, and scale models. This gives users more variety than with scanners like the Pouff 3D that can only scan objects as big as the scanner itself.

Its open source Windows software supports CAD and SketchUp file formats, so MiniCut2D can serve as motivation for beginners looking to move on to more advanced ideas. The €8,900 (~$10,043) campaign is looking to have the €499 (~$563) product out to backers by May of this year.