3D Printing

3D-printed mower keeps lawn in trim

3D-printed mower keeps lawn in...
A South African man has used his garage-sized printer to produce a 3D-printed lawn mower
A South African man has used his garage-sized printer to produce a 3D-printed lawn mower
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The 3D printer took care of the wheels, frame and covers for the wheels, top and motor, while the motor itself, the blades, handle, switch and wheel shafts were transplanted from an old mower
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The 3D printer took care of the wheels, frame and covers for the wheels, top and motor, while the motor itself, the blades, handle, switch and wheel shafts were transplanted from an old mower
The Cheetah was able to print out the parts required for the mower in 9 hours
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The Cheetah was able to print out the parts required for the mower in 9 hours
The blades, handle, switch and wheel shafts were transplanted from an old mower
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The blades, handle, switch and wheel shafts were transplanted from an old mower
The 3D printer's 3 mm (0.12 in) nozzle gives the finished lawn mower a noticeably layered aesthetic
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The 3D printer's 3 mm (0.12 in) nozzle gives the finished lawn mower a noticeably layered aesthetic
The Cheetah was able to print out the parts required for the machine in 9 hours
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The Cheetah was able to print out the parts required for the machine in 9 hours
The Cheetah prints objects at 12 times the speed and at one tenth of the cost of a common desktop 3D printer
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The Cheetah prints objects at 12 times the speed and at one tenth of the cost of a common desktop 3D printer
A South African man has used his garage-sized printer to produce a 3D-printed lawn mower
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A South African man has used his garage-sized printer to produce a 3D-printed lawn mower
View gallery - 7 images

It might not offer the same durability as your trusty ol' Husqvarna, but a 3D-printed lawnmower has shown it is up to the task of keeping your lawn in shape. South Africa's Hans Fouche designed and produced his new machine with a custom-made 3D printer dubbed Cheetah, which he has hopes of eventually bringing to market.

Fouche's Cheetah is said to be around the size of a garage and able to print large objects at impressive speeds. He tells Gizmag it prints objects at 12 times the speed and at one tenth of the cost of a common desktop 3D printer, with a build volume of 1,000 mm x 1,000 mm x 1,000 mm (39.4 x 39.4 x 39.4 in).

Fouche says that the Cheetah's quicker print speed is a result of the 3 mm (0.12 in) nozzle, much larger than the 0.5 mm (0.02 in) nozzles found on typical printers. The downside to this is that it leaves the finished product with a noticeably layered aesthetic, but hey, whoever described even the sleekest of lawn mowers as being easy on the eyes? Further to these quicker production times, the Cheetah prints with ABS granules, a material that is cheaper than the spools of filament often used in 3D printing.

When it comes to spitting out a lawn mower, this means the Cheetah was able to print out the required parts in 9 hours. The printer took care of the wheels, frame and covers for the wheels, top and motor, while the motor itself, the blades, handle, switch and wheel shafts were transplanted from an old mower.

The 3D printer's 3 mm (0.12 in) nozzle gives the finished lawn mower a noticeably layered aesthetic
The 3D printer's 3 mm (0.12 in) nozzle gives the finished lawn mower a noticeably layered aesthetic

With the pieces assembled, Fouche took his new mower to an overgrown lawn to demonstrate its grass-cutting prowess. While it's not the prettiest piece of machinery we have come across, building a lawn mower largely using 3D printing is certainly an impressive feat.

It follows a line of other items Fouche has been able to produce using his 3D printer, including a series of salad bowls, flower vases, an ornamental tree and even the platforms for high heels. But whether the capacity to print your own mower and other large objects is enough to warrant the Cheetah's slated US$10,000 price tag is perhaps a question for when (or if) it does eventually make it to market.

Source: Fouche 3D Printing via 3DPrint.com

View gallery - 7 images
8 comments
tyme2par4
That's great and all, until a rock shoots out the side of the plastic. There's reason they make mower decks out of steel.
Bill Bennett
A rock has obviously already hit Hans on the head, thud, "ouch, hmm now what was I thinking about" "hmm why is there a hole in the mower deck, no worries a new can be made fast". I had a mower with an aluminum deck, you could hear the blade hit the top of the housing alot, yeah a TORO.
Hans Fouche
For the uninformed.... This lawn mower will be tested until it fails. I will inspect the failure mode, make design modifications to the CAD file, and print the next one​. That will also be tested to destruction... and modifications will be made....and reprinted.... That is the way of product development! The first technology demonstrator is EXPECTED to fail.... If you don't know that, Please don't knock my lawn mower down ! At the moment the stoneguard is 6mm thick ABS. After a lot of mowing, no stone have left a visible mark on the inside of that guard yet…. I will keep on inspecting it, as soon as I find a stone damage mark that looks severe, I will change to 9mm, or 12mm…..or 21mm for that matter. That is how development work is done on such a new product
Lawnmowerwizard
A great example of rapid manufacture in action. I see no reason why plastics should not be a suitable material for making lawn mower decks, many successful examples already exist, and if projects such as this can go further in optimising that idea, then that has to be a good thing.
Hans Fouche
Thank you, Lawnmowerwizard, .... "optimizing that idea"....... is the key...!!!!
(Watch Out for a 3d Printed Hoover..... soon!!!)
Andrew Zuckerman
Good job Hans, may the force be with you! Could you 3d print me a skateboard or a scooter or a 3 foot frisbee?
Hans Fouche
Hi Andrew Zuckerman, yes I can.......!
Hans Fouche
Here is a better video of the lawnmower.... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0lANAFrq6KI&feature=youtu.be