3D printing can do a lot of things. Once it becomes more mainstream, it could save lives with 3D-printed body parts, or extend the life of our home appliances and thereby cut down on land-fill junk. Alternatively, we could just screw around and use 3D printing to make mini-me models of ourselves. That’s the fun-filled option chosen by one chain of stores in China.
The company and the 3D-printed figurines it creates of its customers are now going viral on the Chinese web. The chain, called Pinla3D, opened a new store over the weekend in the eastern Chinese city of Nanjing, and now it has 11 locations.
Pinla3D scans its customers in-store and then gives them a choice of 3D model sizes. A 25cm (9.8-inch) figure costs RMB 3,580 (US$580), according to the store’s site. Three generations of one family can be immortalized in plastic at 1:9 scale for RMB 8,997 (US$1,470). That’s cheaper than we’ve seen it done by a Japanese startup site – with the added bonus that going in-person to the store will make the mini-me more accurate than submitting a bunch of photos to a website.
However, if you want a full-size replica rather than a pocketable mini-me from this Chinese store, you’ll have to pay a staggering RMB 175,000 (US$28,500) for a 1:1 3D-printed clone.
Here are a couple more in-store photos from the company’s website:
Also check out this two-minute report from Chinese TV:
(Hat-tip to WantChina Times for spotting this)
(Editing by Willis Wee)