FOR A DAY Winchester Discovery Centre became home to what may become the 8th wonder of the world, or Hampshire at least, writes Gareth Newnham.

Standing at 12 feet tall, and weighting approximately 50kg, the potentially record breaking statue of eccentric engineer, and YouTube superstar, James Bruton, cast an impressive shadow across the auditorium, as onlookers marvelled at the colossal 3D printed creation.

The current world record for the largest 3D printed sculpture of a human is 3.06m, James claims his creation is over half a meter taller at 3.62m.

However, it will take 12 weeks for the Guinness Book of Records to rule whether James is the new record holder, after having the statue closely examined by a quantity surveyor, and two independent witnesses at the public event to make sure that the structure is free standing, self supporting, and only made of 3D printed materials.

To support his record breaking claim, James filmed and documented the entire construction process, which will be released as a series of shorts on his YouTube channel this December, after he has (hopefully) got his certificate from Guinness.

The giant statue took over 500 hours, some two to three months, to complete, and is constructed from over a dozen interlocking plastic sections created using two Lulzbot TAZ6 3D printers.

When asked how he felt about the giant statue, James said: “It’s not that odd. It’s been in my house now for nearly two months now. I decided to print myself to avoid any potential copyright issues.”

He continued: “I thought it would be fun to try and do a world record attempt for my YouTube channel and settled on the biggest humanoid statue because it was the most manageable, some of the other 3D printing world records are insane.”

James said that the whole process was very exciting and that he is “addicted to doing world records.”

So he will definitely attempting some more. “I might try to make the worlds biggest skateboard next.”

He quipped: “No one else has tried it.”

3D printing is a relatively new phenomenon so the potential for world records is vast.

The technology is evolving rapidly. Also known as Additive Manufacturing (AM), it creates three-dimensional objects out of layers of material.

Almost anything can be made out of 3D printers, even firearms.

in which layers of material are formed under computer control to create an object.[2] Objects can be of almost any shape or geometry and typically are produced using digital model data from a 3D model or another electronic data source such as an Additive Manufacturing File (AMF) file. STereoLithography (STL) is one of the most common file types that 3D printers can read. Thus, unlike material removed from a stock in the conventional machining process, 3D printing or AM builds a three-dimensional object from computer-aided design (CAD) model or AMF file by successively adding material layer by layer.[3]

The term “3D printing” originally referred to a process that deposits a binder material onto a powder bed with inkjet printer heads layer by layer. More recently, the term is being used in popular vernacular to encompass a wider variety of additive manufacturing techniques. United States and global technical standards use the official term additive manufacturing for this broader sense.