Many known companies are starting to join the 3D printed footwear market. We’ve seen Nike and Adidas take interest, and recently New Balance has joined the innovation. They have announced that next year they will be launching a running shoe with a 3D printed insole. New Balance hopes this shoe, which is still unnamed, will cut down the overall cost of making the shoe.
In order to create the midsole New Balance worked together with 3D Systems. They used the company’s printers and an elastomeric powder called DuraForm Flex TPU to keep the shoe both lightweight and durable. This will also help the shoe be more correctly customized so it can better fit the unique shape of each person’s feet. More comfort will help bring in more customers for New Balance, 3DShoes.com, and other companies looking towards 3D printing for production.
The shape or the midsole is very important to a shoe, because it is the source of support and shock absorption. The method they are using will help them cut down the amount of time to create, which can usually take a month. The printer will be able to print 16 different midsole designs a day. The 3D midsole is planned to be released in April 2016, the ability to customize your own shoes will be around a year away.
Original Article: http://www.popsci.com/new-balance-plans-to-sell-3d-printer-sneaker-in-early-2016
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