At Comerica Park, Major League Baseball (MLB) team Detroit Tigers have taken fan engagement to the next level. They now offer fans the chance to have small 3D replicas of themselves in any pose made right at the ballpark.
The German company Doob operates their Doob-licator, at the Comerica Park to create figurines as chosen by the fans – they even have the chance to choose the team mascot, to be inserted beside them in the final product. As for now, the chance to add current Detroit Tigers players is not available but is being considered for the future.
The photo-realistic colour figurines called Doobs are available to purchase. A 4-inch model called Buddy is $95 and a 14-inch model called The Diva is $695.
How does it work?
The Doob-licator is an octagon-shaped chamber with 54-individual cameras located on the walls. All photos from these cameras are then combined to produce a 3D image. The image is then sent off to be made. To manufacture a figurine, the process time is 24 hours. Fans will then receive the Doob by mail when the printing process is complete.
President at Doob USA, Michael Anderson said: “It’s a very emotional type product; it’s not about the novelty. People have very strong emotional connections to their sports teams and their cities.
“Additionally, there are practical business applications for the 3-D printing technology in sports, such as scanning football player’s heads to aid in customization of improved helmets.”
The future of 3D
New technology as 3D printing is serving as unique way to attract visitors and business into other stadiums across the MLB. It also educates fans how 3D modeling and printing will become an essential part in other industries such as architecture, prosthetics and fashion.
By the end of 2020 we can expect 3D Bioprinting (printing of functional human limbs and organs) and by 2025 we can have a global network of industrial-scale 3D manufacturing centers to produce clothing, electronics and lifestyle goods.
Glenn Risum is a Sport Management Undergraduate at UCN where he focuses on the intersection of where sport, technology and business collide. He is also a Consultant at Digital Agency, WePlay.