3D Printing & Imaging Science
Replicating Picard’s Tea Cup

Adafruit writer and MAKE pal johngineer has prepared and published a 3D model of Captain Picard’s tea cup, based on images found at TREKPROPS.DE.

I love the idea of using “Tea, Earl Grey, hot”—an image so often reached for to illustrate the idea of 3D-printing in general—as a benchmark for the state of the technology. We’ve pretty much got the handle and the cup down, already. The tea may take a while longer, I suppose, and purists who insist on direct energy-to-matter conversion will probably have to wait at least another couple of months. But we’re getting there.


I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I am a long-time contributor to MAKE magazine and makezine.com. My work has also appeared in ReadyMade, c't – Magazin für Computertechnik, and The Wall Street Journal.

View more articles by Sean Michael Ragan