MakerBot at Google TechTalk

By on June 25th, 2009 in blog

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Enjoy a great 35 minute video of Adam Meyer, one of the three founders of MakerBot, speaking at TechTalk. Adam provides a good overview of the “juggernaut of 3D industry”, Makerbot Industries. He speaks of the inspiration for MakerBot, beginning with the RepRap project and eventually leading to MakerBot’s first product, the Cupcake printer.

They’ve taken the RepRap design and made it a whole lot simpler. They’ve made it smaller, more portable and changed some of the design. One of their optimizations is to reverse the motion paradigm: Instead of moving the heavy extrusion head during printing, they move the very light tray. Another innovation is to use wooden panels instead of the more fragile acrylic equivalents.

Their design is open source, so you can actually build your own makerbot, but they recommend buying the kit from them as it can be tricky to source all the parts efficiently. Being open source means you can tinker with the design. Really, they’ve made a platform from which we have no idea what might emerge. Adam’s favorite unexpected item is a bathtub plug, which has given the world “cleaner nerds”.

Adam also describes Thingiverse, a web site facilitating the sharing of 3D designs. We believe repositories of models is an essential part of an effective 3D environment, and Thingiverse could become much more important in future years.

There’s a fascinating walk-thru of the entire sequence of printing, from design to motion of the build platform. A live demonstration of an ABS print takes place, showing some of the techniques they’ve used to overcome the stickiness of ABS. Ok, so we’re nerds here too.

Via YouTube

By Kerry Stevenson

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has written over 8,000 stories on 3D printing at Fabbaloo since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!

1 comment

  1. So far, I have heard of 3 types of home 3d print materials: plastic extrusion, dental plaster (with water mixed with maltodextrin) and cornstarch. Are there any more mediums that are used, and has anyone made a list of their pros and cons?

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