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3D-printed food, robot arms and more at the 3D Printshow London (pictures)

Check out the lovingly extruded marvels and wonder at the many ways 3D printing is set to change our lives. Plus a life-size, 3D-printed Paul McCartney.

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Luke Westaway, Andrew Hoyle
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3D printing is making its way into automobiles. British custom car company Morgan uses the technology to build parts of its motors.

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A Morgan wing mirror casing for instance is made from ABS plastics. It will be coated with primer, then painted.

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My 3D Twin will make a highly-detailed model of your likeness. Creepy.

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Their scanning equipment features 64 cameras, arranged in a ring.

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High on our list of 'very tempted to steal' is this T-Rex head, printed from nylon by 3DPrintUK. This one was used in a toy ad.

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The medical applications for 3D printing are potentially profound. This OpenBionics 3D-printed robot prosthetic is controlled by muscle impulses.

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The goal, its makers say, is to one day sell a prosthetic like this for under $1,000.

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Until now 3D printing has been largely limited to plastics, but Heriot-Watt University is showing its ambition to print human tissue.

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When scaled up, the university says this process could be used to quickly test new drugs on human tissue.

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The use of 3D-printed tissue may allow new drugs to be tested without putting people at risk -- something that may also eliminate animal testing.

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From human matter to food -- By Flow's 3D printer can produce edible substances. It's in an experimental stage right now, but can produce this 3D-printed caviar. Note that these aren't fish eggs, but fruit-flavoured edible globs.

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This machine is printing the fruity caviar. Drops are pushed into a bowl filled with sunflower oil.

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The chefs are hard at work, creating 3D-printed edible treats.

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It doesn't look terribly appetising, but this could be the future of food.

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3D printers are becoming more multi-use. Polish company Zmorph made this model house using its printer's various optional print heads.

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Zmorph's printer can print plastic, of course. But it also has a laser cutter option, a dremel head for milling, plus a cake and chocolate extruder. Oh, and it can print ceramics too.

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Here's a chocolate bunny face made using the cake and chocolate extruder.

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Here is the food printer itself.

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3Doodler, which makes 3D-printing pens, shows off its latest creations.

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Anyone who's used the 3Doodler will know creating these plastic marvels must have been very time consuming.

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This is Kidesign's Kideville, a city planning project for schools. Kids must design these miniature buildings, then consider where in town they'd be best placed.

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Filamentum makes speakers that incorporate 3D printing.

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These bizarre lights come courtesy of designers 52Shapes. Trendy, non?

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Printing company Imaterialise printed these elaborate shoes to a designer's specifications. We wouldn't fancy navigating a catwalk in these.

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3D printing reaches its natural zenith with this life-size, 3D-printed Paul McCartney. It's hollow inside and took roughly five days to build. The 3D source model is publicly available, I was told.

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We also got a look at some art that incorporates 3D printing. Although now that we think about it, we wouldn't mind living in one of these. Get on that, 3D printing industry.

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Kings College Hospital is showing off this fascinating medical use for 3D printing. By scanning and printing (handled by precise printing company Stratasys), surgeons can get a look at what a patient's upcoming operation will involve -- a surgical practise run, of sorts. The red object in this photo represents a tumour, and knowing the precise size and shape of what they're looking for gives surgeons an edge during procedures.

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Despite how it looks, these 3D printers are not, in fact, printing more 3D printers. That really would signify the end times.

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The 3D Printshow London runs through Saturday. The show is open to the public on the final day. Ticket information is available here.

The 3D Printshow will travel to Pasadena, Calif., in September, to Paris in October, and to Dubai in November.

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