It seems like we can’t go a week these days without hearing about some new startup making a new 3D printer that wants to be better and cheaper than everything else. I’m not complaining, of course — competition is good for everyone. But it’s a tough space if you’re looking to stand out.
MadeSolid, a YC-backed company out of Emeryville, CA, is going after the 3D printing market from the other end: they want to fix the materials we 3D print with.
You see, 3D printing isn’t perfect. Amongst other things, the smallest snag in the process of printing an object can (and regularly does) wreck the entire thing — often after many hours of printing. Imagine if you were printing a book on an inkjet printer and the entire thing somehow ruined itself any time there was a paper jam or if a bit of ink ended up in the wrong place. When 3D printers fail, they tend to fail hard.
MadeSolid actually started out with the intention of being a 3D printing service, but quickly realized that the fail rates of 3D printers was just too high for them to do it at scale. With backgrounds in chemistry, nuclear engineering, and business (quite the combination), the company’s three co-founders set out to tackle what they saw as an overlooked weakness: the materials used to 3D print. … (Read more)