WSJ: 3-D printing – Jay Leno prints his own car parts
KUDOS JAY!!! Who Says Jay Leno Isn’t Cutting Edge? When it comes to making parts for his cars, the ‘Tonight Show’ host is a pioneer!
Mr. Leno houses his more than 200 cars and motorcycles in a cluster of solar-powered warehouselike buildings outside of Los Angeles that span 110,000 square feet. In one of the structures is an expansive shop equipped with an impressive array of 21st-century machines, including a Stratasys industrial-grade 3-D printer, a NextEngine scanner, a Fadal computer-controlled mill and a (very pricey) KMT Hammerhead water jet cutter that can slice through steel. Along with a battery of more-traditional metal machining equipment, the tools allow Mr. Leno and a small crew of garage workers to fabricate just about any auto part that has been produced in the past 100 years.
No More Scavenging
“The days of going to a junkyard and trying to find an auto part that says Packard or Franklin on it are over,” Mr. Leno says. “We can make almost anything we need right here in the shop ourselves.”
The TV host agrees that the new tools will increasingly empower other individuals and entrepreneurial ventures to make increasingly sophisticated things themselves. “Manufacturing started out with craftsmen making stuff in small cottage industries,” he says. “In many ways I think we’re going to go back to that cottage-industry model.
“You know, Edison had a dream that every household would generate its own electricity. And Ford wanted people to be able to distill their own fuel. In the end, maybe those dreams won’t look all that far-fetched.”