How do you immortalize your loved one? Simple. You have them printed as a scrapyard miniature in glorious alumide or bronze. “You and Me” by Dr. Ulrich Schwanitz is a fresh Indigogo project in the beginning stages of funding. If you want to give that special person something unique, this would be it.

You & Me

The 3D prints are two ‘Scrappies’, characters inspired by nuts, bolts, coils, pipes and other bits you would find in a scrapyard. The idea started “almost 10 years ago. Our son Nils welded a few garden-sized sculptures from real scrap metal. I have to credit him for the original idea.” Dr. Schwanitz says, “But much to our dismay, he has now found other interests and will not continue along that path. The old garden sculptures are slowly, but surely rusting away and we often dreamed about how to preserve them and make them available to an interested audience.”

“In the end, I had to step into Nils’ footsteps to carry the idea forward, and the rise of additive manufacturing and 3D printing came to our advantage. Since I am a lot more into computer applications than into drills and wrenches and welding gear, my natural choice was to try to start off with some digital models and to work from there. And that’s what I did.”

“It wasn’t an easy start. Despite the various success stories and glossy brochures praying on the potential and capabilities of 3D printing, I found it difficult, sometimes disillusioning and often frustrating to master the numerous steps from idea to final outcome, be it the odds-and-ends of the computer software, the limitations of the available fabrication methods and materials, or not to the least, the cost of manufacturing.”

“I grew up as a scientist in the 1970’s and 80’s. I have worked in the IT departments of multinational manufacturing companies in Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands. For the last 10 years, I have worked independently on my own projects. The creation of real, tangible objects from virtual design is one of my latest passions. I am always inclined to new technologies and to a certain extend, I see myself and my objects as ambassadors for the possibilities of an evolving technology.”

“I am personally fascinated by the possibilities of metal printing. Of course I hope for a fantastic response from the current funding campaign at Indiegogo. If the You & Me project becomes overwhelmingly successful, I plan to bundle some of the processing into larger runs and should be able to make some profit from the project. This would certainly help to bring similar future projects along.”

The prints are monogrammed with the initials of you and your spouse and available in a variety of materials and sizes, ready to be printed, shipped and perched on your desk as a symbol of your eternal love.


Josh is founder and editor at, founder at Aimsift Inc., and co-founder of EvD Media. He is involved in engineering, design, visualization, the technology making it happen, and the content developed around it. He is a SolidWorks Certified Professional and excels at falling awkwardly.