3D Printing a Life-Size Bigfoot Skeleton

History Channel recently aired a new documentary entitled “Bigfoot
Captured”, which researchers at Idaho State University utilized Stratasys 3D printing
to print an 8 foot tall life size skeleton replica of what researchers believe
fabled creature to looks like.

With help from anthropology and anatomy professor Jeff
Meldrum, a team at the ISU Robotics and Communication Systems Engineering
Technology program used fossil and bone data of an extinct large ape species Gigantopithecus,
to model what they think a Bigfoot skeleton would look like. For those in the scientific
community, Gigantopithecus is believed to be a close relative to what Bigfoot
is, if Bigfoot is indeed real. The project was something that long time
researcher Jeff Meldrum found really remarkable. “Even this was a bit of an
academic exercise because obviously everything is just inferential, but what it
conveys is that otherwise difficult-to-imagine sensation or impression of
standing next to a skeleton that’s 8 feet tall. I mean it’s huge—massive.”


Idaho State University 3D Prints Life Size Bigfoot Skeleton

The skeleton took roughly 16000 hours to print utilizing
multiple Stratasys FDM printers. There were 1000 cubic inches of ABS plastic
used to create not only individual bones but also fused parts together for larger
bones that were too big for the printers build platform. Just like in the manufacturing
world designers of this skeleton utilized CAD software to design what they
thought was the best layout of Bigfoot, then when using the printers had to
take into account part build orientation to optimize part strength and build
speed. This project also utilized soluble support materials for the intricate bone
designs which allowed for much greater detail and less design constraints.

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