In the Philippines, an easy-to-use vacuum former makes the process accessible and affordable to more.
Vacuum forming is a manufacturing technique in which a heated sheet of plastic is suctioned down onto an object, forming a detailed and accurate mould of the original. Vaquform is a Kickstarter project that hopes to add some digital technology to this well established technique, bringing an industrial level of quality and a more consumer-friendly form at a lower price.
The product uses an IR probe to monitor the temperature of the plastic and preset settings for different material thicknesses and types, making it relatively easy to use. The design also uses a two-part vacuum system to achieve a greater level of accuracy and detail. Vaquform seemingly makes high quality thermoforming more accessible.
With hundreds of maker-spaces opening across the world, products that afford users the chance to get stuck in are clearly an emerging trend. Examples such as this 3D printing pen and this DIY, open source, plastics recycling machine abound. Could this technology be used elsewhere?