"We sell the machines and the service, for the most part business to business," DePinto said. "We're basically a value added retailer."
3D Creations opened August 1 in The Shops of Grand Avenue in Milwaukee, with the help of $10,000 from UWM for winning its Student Startup Challenge. 3D consults with tech and manufacturing companies on rapid prototyping of product designs with its 3D printers.
A model of a product concept can be inexpensively created in one of the company's printers, giving an idea of what the finished product would look like.
For example, a customer who makes custom cookies to sell online wanted to test shapes for her unique cookie cutters. Instead of sending her trademark designs to be made into prototypes overseas, she made a model using the 3D printers at 3D Creations.
"It's kind of ideal for entrepreneurs and inventors," DePinto said. "There's so much money just wasted in transportation."
Rapid prototyping like this could replace injection molding on a small scale, so the company is targeting local manufacturers, he said.
"I want to let them know there's an easier way to do it," DePinto said.