26 Oct Reebok’s Liquid Material For 3D Printed Shoes
Shoe developers are struggling a bit with the challenge 3D printed shoes is presenting. But they are determined to get around it because 3D printing could help solve the issue of the non-recyclable shoes we are currently making. The main challenge is making a 3D shoe that is comfortable, durable, fashionable, and a perfect fit all in one. Reebok has come up with a line of shoes called Liquid Speed sneakers. They use a custom liquid material 3D printing method to produce a portion of the sole for the shoe. We will be seeing this type of 3D printing in a new liquid factory in early 2017.
Reebok’s Bill McInnis revealed that this is a step towards their ideal manufacturing system. By taking out shipping and making molds, products can get to the consumers closer than ever. Having 3D printers accessible helps people get shoes without the wait. We will also someday see this accessibility for 3DShoes.com, New Balance, and other shoe developers who will offer prints online. Customers will simply scan their foot; pay for the shoe, and 3D print in the comfort of their own home. Reebok also realizes that 3D printing will not only cut the time down but costs as well.
Only 300 of the Liquid Speed sneakers will be manufactured, for now, each priced at $189.50 a pair. They look great, and the liquid 3D printing has given them a very futuristic look. The shoes were designed using CAD technology, and then BASF’s liquid material was used to build the soles. The process can be seen on a YouTube video available on the original article. Not only are the soles produced efficiently, but they also perform significantly better than a traditional rubber outsole. Developments like this will be good for the American shoe market, and the first of many to be included in future 3D printed footwear.