RapidPro 2013 Conference & Exhibition
We here at 3Dprintingforbeginners.com love 3D printing exhibitions. It is always thrilling to discover the latest technological leaps in the 3D printing field. We also do enjoy making plenty of new contacts as well as spotting the hottest and most amazing 3D printers or printed objects being showcased. That’s why we were quite ecstatic when we read about the 3rd edition of the RapidPro conference, which was held on 26 and 27th of February 2013 in Veldhoven (close to Eindhoven) in the Netherlands.
Presentation of the RapidPro
The RapidPro is aimed mainly at professionals, but recently started to also focus on the ever-growing consumer market. As stated in its visitors information leaflet the RapidPro is an ideal starting point for exchanging knowledge and sharing experiences. After having spent a whole day at this great fair, we are now able to expressly confirm this. 🙂
To start with, admittance to the fair is completely FREE and the visitor registration was not only straightforward but also hassle-free. The only drawback of a free fair is that it potentially attracts a lot of people, which was definitely the case for the RapidPro 2013.
The RapidPro is however not to be categorized only as an exhibition and fair, as there are also conferences held and workshops organised over the two days of the event. Some of these conferences are exclusively aimed at professionals while others are for consumers. The only major drawback was that quite a large number of those conferences were held in Dutch only. Nevertheless, the subjects were as varied as interesting.
There were over 80 exhibitors at the RapidPro 2013. Besides the big names as 3D Systems, i.Materialise and Renishaw, there were numerous Dutch companies, active both nationally and internationally. The items showcased were amazing and sometimes even mindblowing, as you might from our selection of photos in our gallery.
1. New filament type
We had the chance to discover a new filament type, which seems to boast all of the advantages of PLA, but which is more resistant to breaking and apparently easier to print with! But we will leak no more information on this HOT topic, as we are trying to obtain an exclusive interview with the CEO of the filament manufacturer, together with a whole specs list as a 3Dprintingforbeginners.com exclusive.
2. Cartesio printer
We were lucky to talk to the creator of the very interesting Cartesio printer. Just check the photos of this beast, with 4 (!!) print heads and a build volume of 200 X 400 X 200. We also like that you can simply replace the printheads with other tools, like a Proxxon engraver. Hopefully, we will get more information soon – come to check our site often for any updates.
3. Creaform’s GO!SCAN 3D portable scanner
This is a must see live at every 3D fair, as Creaform’s GO!SCAN 3D is really amazing. The GO!SCAN 3D is a handheld, extremely portable 3D scanner with a simple “point and shoot” feature. It is incredibly fast and easy to use. Check out our movie here. However, as with nearly all handheld 3D scanners, they are incredibly expensive and far out of reach for us simple consumers. The most “basic” model featured in our movie goes around 20.000 EUR !! That’s a lot of money, but we would nevertheless love to get our hands on one of these for detailed testing purposes. What we saw at the RapidPro convinced us that these babies will go a long way and we still hope for the cheaper consumer models to appear one day soon.
We did participate at those large-scale workshops, open to every visitor at the fair. These 2 hour workshops were supervised by very competent and friendly people from Ultimaker, which also provided the computers for modelling and a bunch of Ultimaker 3D printers. In these workshops, people could realise their first hands-on experience with a 3D printer. Others brought ready-made files from home and had them printed at the fair. Generally talking, it was a lot of fun and an easy way to meet, connect and share experiences and stories with same-minded people.
We would like to express our thanks to all of the people from Ultimaker, which were, simply put, amazing! Not only did they take a lot of time to talk to us, but they were extremely helpful and provided us with a ton of information and even some 3D printed goodies. Thanks again. Hope to see you at the next fair.
As a conclusion, if you want to see (for free) the latest printers, some of the best showcased models, the most recent developments in the field or if you just want to play around with a 3D printer, we recommend you to go and visit the next RapidPro. We here at 3Dprintingforbeginners.com are certainly looking forward to its next edition!