Freshly launched on MakerBot’s Thingverse website, these accessories are available to anyone with access to a 3D printer — which, nowadays means practically anybody. With 3D printers now occupying most UPS stores, FedEx Office outlets, and even public libraries, you don’t necessarily have to own a 3D printer to use one anymore.
Hoover’s pilot program will begin with the release of two printable accessories for the new Hoover Air Cordless: A snap-on battery mount for carrying the extra lithium ion battery that comes with the Air Cordless, and a special clip that allows users to attach a flashlight to the end of the vacuum’s hose extension.
“This new innovative technology is a great fit for our progressive new cordless cleaners,“ said Hoover’s vice president of Product Development Paul Bagwell. “Offering exclusive print-on-demand tools and accessories allows Hoover to address narrower consumer needs that might not justify whole-scale manufacturing. 3D printing allows us to be more nimble and respond to consumer accessory and customization needs quicker than typical manufacturing processes might allow.”
And today’s news is just the beginning. Hoover reportedly has plans to release additional accessory designs to coincide with the launch of the Hoover Air Cordless Lift in spring of 2015. Moving forward, this might become a regular thing, with specially-designed printable accessories regularly launching alongside all of Hoover’s newly-released products.