I haven’t been a very active “trader” in the past few years; I’ve started to focus more on low cost investing (if you’re looking to save money on trading costs and get a $100 bonus to boot, OptionsHouse is the way to go-use link for promo code), the occasional market inefficiency trade (pairs trades, hedging gas prices, etc) rather than trying to beat the market with picking stocks since the reality is even the best and brightest in the world (while being paid millions per year) cannot do so over a prolonged period.  As such, I’m the first to admit I’m a mere mortal and don’t focus much effort on individual equities like I did in my earlier days.  However, occasionally, I pick up on a secular trend I see.  This would be something larger than a typical “hot stock” or “tip”, but rather an emerging trend in society, a company with a lock on a truly innovative product or something along those lines.  Examples include the 200%-500% gains I’ve made over the past few years in stocks like Apple (I sensed the iPhone would change the world, and it did), Netflix (back when they were the only game in town and before Reed Hastings drove them into the ground with dumb pricing and strategic decisions), Chipotle (when they were opening up stores on every corner) and BIDU (the Google of China).  That’s not to say I haven’t had my fair share of losses to balance them out, but you get the point.  If you pick some real game-changers, or even just one, it may well be worth hanging on to.

The Future is 3-D Printing

Starting this summer, I’ve been routinely tweeting about 3-D printing and how it’s a real gamechanger.  I’m not going to rehash what I’ve written, tweeted previously and it’s all laid out much more eloquently here – Makers: The New Industrial Revolution.  But I view this as a revolutionary technology that’s finally ready for the masses (“Rapid Prototyping” and 3D printers have been used in industrial settings for decades now but they used to cost 6 figures; now home hackers and high school science clubs are buying them for a few hundred bucks).  All the time, I think of something that I’d love to have but isn’t widely demanded enough by the masses for someone else to have put it into mass production.  Now, you can copy your kids’ friends toys, create your own tools, design your own jewelry, fix your own stuff rather than buying new again and they’re even making guns which is kind of scary (not just because they’re guns, but they probably don’t function very well for the owner just yet either).  The bottom line is that the future is now for 3-D printing and this stock is up 285% in the past year.

Continue Reading on How I Invested in 3D Printing

How to Invest in 3D Printing


  1. 3D printing does seem a fascinating technology but I just wonder if it is going to be a must have for the home. Perhaps its more along the lines of those kiosks where you took film to be developed. What was their name? Foto Mat or something like that. You’d run down to the 3D printer shop to have them create whatever it is you wanted with a heavier duty machine.

  2. 3D Systems Corp.(DDD), A good deal at $15, it’s now $58, PE is 84, market cap is $3.31 billion.

    Looks like the this ship sailed some time ago,

  3. “I bet it doesn’t make gold and silver 1oz rounds.”

    It does but you have to put in the Gold and Silver printer cartridge! Buy a bunch of them on the cheap right now and print to your hearts content later!

  4. Sangell-there are companies popping up where you can send custom designed objects over via email and they’ll print in various materials, colors, etx. Pretty incredible stuff. But those companies have to buy the printers.

    AWD-trailing PE for a growth company in its infancy isn’t really helpful compared to more mature companies. Say you coil have bought Apple, google or Amazon years back at a PE of 84 still a great move!

    Up 11% just in the 3 trading days this week.

    Totally prone to crash if course but I’m seeing more and more in this in the press so the herds will inevitably be buying soon.

  5. When I first heard about them I thought it would be a game changer as it matured. When they get it to the point of doing metal printing you could go to your local car parts place and have them print the part in house. No inventory needed anymore.

  6. That would be awesome; for metals, sounds like more of a CNC machine business model. Lots of setup/overhead associated since they’re $1MM machines. If able to settle for various polymers, these shops will certainly pop up for 3D printing.

    Heard a great podcast from the founder of DIY drones (not military, but they do civilian only); you can basically custom design your own drones and they print/ship instantly. quad rotor w camera to go spy on your neighbor, check the traffic over by the highway or whatever; they’re under a thousand bucks! awesome toy/gadget if you’ve got the money to piss away LOL!

  7. 3D printing will bring manufacturing back onto our shores and dramatically lower the costs of manufacturing simple, small things in the near term, and larger, more complex things over time. One demo vid i viewed showed a small one-room house being “printed” in layers, with the plumbing and wiring being printed along with everything else. This extremely advanced 3D tech is, of course, not quite ready to go commercial, but it exists and I would auger that in a decade, will be ready to supply low cost housing to the shantytowns of the world.

    I am personally researching this tech with the idea of “printing” electronic cigarettes to sell from my own facility. Whether or not this technology is far enough along to offer me a low-cost (no more than $25,000) device that could print a small electronic device reliably and at a reasonable cost after figuring in all my other costs, I do not know, but there are now many machines available in the $15,000-$50,000 range that can handle simple plastic forms. Obviously, the technology needs more development, but given the pace of advancement in technology, I believe that we will see a lot of manufacturing of fairly complex items being done within the decade, for dramatically reduced costs at every stage of the chain. There will be a strong impetus to bring manufacturing back into the country because of mounting fuel costs, which will make manufacturing in foreign slave-labor havens much less economical, and this technology will make domestic manufacturing even more competitive.


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