ROCKFORD — Move over, March Madness.
A massive 3D printer made by Rockford-based Ingersoll Machine Tools has advanced to the Round of 16 in the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association’s version of the Big Dance.
Ingersoll’s MasterPrint finished among the top four in the first round of public voting for the 260 nominated products in this year’s Makers’ Madness Tournament competing for the title of Coolest Thing Made in Illinois.
MasterPrint is the world’s largest device that prints with plastic, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.
It also holds world records for largest 3D printed part and for largest boat ever printed, a 25-foot, 5,000-pound vessel manufactured in 2019 at the University of Maine.
Ingersoll is the only Rockford company to advance to the Round of 16, where voting will continue through Sunday, .
The public is allowed to vote once a day in each head-to-head contest and the winners will advance to the Top 8 round, where voting begins March 17.
Votes can be cast by accessing makersmadnessil.com/cast-your-vote
“It’s a gateway to allowing people to know what we’re doing,” Ingersoll Machine Tools CEO Chip Storie said. “We’re hiring like crazy here and we want potential employees to know about the really cool things made at Ingersoll.”
The winner of the Coolest Thing Made in Illinois will be announced April 1.
Other products still in the running include Orion Spacecraft Command Module Control Switches made by Otto Engineering Inc. of Carpentersville, the Sloan Flushometer made by Sloan Valve Co. of Franklin Park, and Fisher Oven Roasted Never Fried Mixed Nuts made by John B. Sanfilippo & Son of Elgin.
Ken DeCoster: 815-987-1391; firstname.lastname@example.org; @DeCosterKen