Behind the scenes of our 3D printed balcony April Fool video

Sapphire balconies are always innovating. As shown in the recent April Fools day 3D Printing Video which was in fact a bit of fun for that light hearted day of the year. Sorry if you felt misled by this – but don’t worry as you weren’t the only one.

Let’s go behind the scenes to show you how we created such an authentic looking video. There are however some clues and some truths in the video, both of which we’ll point out to you!

You can see an operator appears to be working on some neat 3D print software. If you look more closely however, it is in fact an image slideshow being clicked through. On the next scene you may have noticed that the 3D Printing progress bar doesn’t actually move. Also the time remaining happens to be 01 04 18 or coincidentally matches the date, 1st, April 2018!

Taking a closer look at the 3D printhead, it is in fact a scale replica we had made of a real life 3D printhead, just scaled up to be the right scale when alongside an actual balcony frame. The replica was then simply connected to Sapphire’s test rig with a rope to move the head around, out of sight from the camera.

The decking scene was in fact filmed at Hex, one of our suppliers who operate large format 2D printers. They printed a 2D deck board vinyl which we filmed. We then shot a separate scene of lifting out a real deck plank from the printer, so as to craftily give the illusion of another 3D Printer!
Our last major clue was the legal protection notice of “Polyaprilfoolisium” which is obviously a completely fictitious material.

Hidden Truths:
Like last year there are some genuine parts:

  1. There really is a skilled construction labour shortage in the UK. Those headlines are genuine 2018 news
  2. Sapphire’s Patented Glide-On balconies do address the skills shortage by enabling rapid install. To date, Sapphire has installed a record breaking 34 balconies in just over 6 hours.
  3. Sapphire lead the industry through clever innovation and the test rig and high-tech equipment featured in scenes of this video are all part of Sapphire’s substantial R&D investment.

So there you have it, whilst 3D printed balconies and Polyaprilfoolisisium aren’t yet available, be assured that the innovative balconies Sapphire supply can benefit your next project.