While I don’t have to remind you about the value of studies – many company-funded studies are best dropped directly in the trash after publication – this one about 3D printing does have some merit. Produced by the authors at Michigan Technological University, it posits that at a home 3D printer can provide a return on investment of 200 to 40 percent and can save the average home up to $2,000 in avoided purchase costs.

Here’s the money shot:

The results show that even making the extremely conservative assumption that the household would only use the printer to make the selected twenty products a year the avoided purchase cost savings would range from about $300 to $2000/year

Now obviously this is at once conservative and a bit of wishful thinking. While I, personally, have built a few hundred dollars worth of parts for various customers using MakeXYZ, I’ve…

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