Engineering 101

Tommy the Additive Manufactured Cat

Dozens of black cats had ended up dead. They weren’t run over or the target of cruel pranks. Rather, they were just lumpy cat bodies resembling flattened quilted dog toys with squeakers with a perfectly preserved head and tail. I stumbled upon these cats in several places– in dusty old towns that I vaguely remember, in the mountains, and by a lake. Somehow, I was able to locate one that still had a smidgeon of life despite his flat quilted body. And I began to save him.

I wish I remembered the actual process—there could be a fortune in it in case we ever found flattened cats again. However, I know it involved additive manufacturing—with which I have no hands-on experience. I was good enough at using the technology to resurrect Tommy. And it was Tommy himself that waxed poetic, relaying to me exactly the steps I took to restore him. He was quite good at providing in-depth information when I interviewed him. Tommy dictated, and I wrote it up. It was truly an exciting experience writing for an additive-manufactured cat. Of course, the resulting article won accolades.

I’m hoping I don’t continue this dream tonight. If I do, I would like to remember the details of the steps I used to reconstruct Tommy’s quilted body.

Now, however, it has me questioning my sanity. Who dreams about this stuff? I hardly even remember my dreams. I’m not even a cat person. Who would name a cat Tommy? An additive manufactured dog might make more sense, as I recently lost a dog of 15 years. But a cat? Yikes!

Am I working too hard as a writer? (Maybe I’ve been writing about tech for too long, too?) Is this how the unraveling of the mind takes place? Help me…

If you’d like to bring Tommy to life and 3D print yourself a cat, check out this resource: https://cults3d.com/en/tags/cat

And if you’re wondering if 3D printing is safe for pets, it is safe for pets with the proper precautions. The best option is to use an enclosed 3D printer so pets cannot touch the hotbed or heated nozzle. And, if you’re worried about toxic fumes and particles, use non-toxic filaments like PLA and an air-purifying system.

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