DesktopFactory Wins Netxplorateur Award

The French Netxplorateur Forum has selected DesktopFactory as the recipient of their Netxplorateur of the Year award. DesktopFactory is one of only 10 of the 100 initiatives to receive the award. Cathy Lewis, CEO of DesktopFactory, said: “It is clear that Desktop Factory will forever change the way we think of ‘printing’ – from an… Continue reading DesktopFactory Wins Netxplorateur Award

RedEye RPM Goes Down Under

We’ve posted on RedEye RPM before; they are the service bureau arm of Stratasys, who manufacture various types of 3D print gear. This announcement ensures strong access to 3D print services for those in Australia and surrounding regions. Details about the service can be found here. Via

There’s Cuteness in RFIDs

Actually, it’s the other way around. Lisa Smith, Masters of Design student at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago / Designed objects, has put RFIDs into something she calls the “Cuteness Generator”. She’s created unique 3D objects and embedded an RFID transmitter into each: They’re designed to be artifacts for schoolkids (K-12) that… Continue reading There’s Cuteness in RFIDs

Capture That Design!

Yet another way to obtain a 3D design for your 3D printer: handheld 3D laser scanners! Creaform’s 2.1 pound Handyscan 3D laser scanner can capture a design from actual 3D objects. Features:   Accurate, fast and easy to use 3D digitizing scanner Plug-&-Play system Self-positioned without measurement arm Single connection through FireWire port High-definition camera… Continue reading Capture That Design!

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Design and the Elastic Mind

Design and the Elastic Mind is the name of a new exhibit to open in February at New York City’s MOMA. The exhibit will feature the work of Finnish designer Janne Kyttänen, who is one of the founders of Freedom of Creation, a firm we’ve posted on previously. The exhibit runs from February 24th through… Continue reading Design and the Elastic Mind

RedEye RPM Adds Modeling

RedEye RPM, the service unit of Stratasys, announces the availability of an architectural modeling service. According to their website, RedEyeArc says: RedEye ARC is your solution to fast turnaround, high quality, 3D plastic models that bring your blueprints to life. We use innovative 3D printing technology to build architectural models that will exceed your expectations… Continue reading RedEye RPM Adds Modeling

Generator.X 2.0 Photos

We came across a large (270 photo) and truly amazing collection of photos taken from the recent Generator.X 2.0 event. While not all exhibits were created with 3D printing, all used modern fabbing techniques. Via Flickr

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1,000 TechShops?

We’ve posted about TechShop before, but at a recent meetup in Portland, Oregon, visitors learned about TechShop’s plans for opening a new shop in that area. While the discussion is a bit clipped, there are tons of details about TechShop operating procedures, equipment and future plans. One ominous nugget said: the COO is from Kinko’s… Continue reading 1,000 TechShops?

Fabbing as a Futuristic Technology?

Melanie Swan, the principal of MS Futures Group, presents an inspiring list of eleven technologies that she believes will dramatically affect the future. Included in her list are such technologies as: biotechnology, nanotech, inexpensive access to outer space, virtual reality and a whole lot on artificial intelligence. Hidden in her list is fabbing, on which… Continue reading Fabbing as a Futuristic Technology?

The Three Modes of 3D Printing

Over the past few months we’ve been observing developments in the 3D printing space, and it is becoming apparent that there are are three delivery modes for this technology: Industrial – This mode is common today, where high-quality, terribly expensive, difficult to operate fabbing devices are typically owned and operated by industrial designers, architectural firms… Continue reading The Three Modes of 3D Printing


Ok, we admit this is only marginally related to 3D printing, but it is interesting enough that we thought we’d point it out to readers. It’s a work of art that includes a mechanical eyeball that literally follows you as you move near the exhibit. What’s the 3D print connection? The black case was printed… Continue reading OptoIsolator

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A Different Kind of Prototyping

Gene Anzalone uses 3D printing in a slightly different way than we’ve seen before. He prints 3D objects as other engineers might. But then things are a little different. He uses the objects directly in design meetings rather than taking traditional 2D diagrams. The 3D objects instantly convey much more information about the item under… Continue reading A Different Kind of Prototyping

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Independent 3D Printing

No, this isn’t about a fabbulous new way to print 3D objects. It’s about the popular news service, “The Independent”, who have just published an introductory story on 3D printing. The piece is intended to tell general readers about this new technology and how it may affect our lives profoundly: The extraordinary thing about this… Continue reading Independent 3D Printing

Media Mixing

We spotted this interesting idea: improve the robustness of printed objects by altering the mix. Evidently a Swinburne professor mixed iron powder with a nylon polymer, extruded it into a composite filament for their Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) machine and printed some inserts. This increased the longevity of the printed parts substantially. Even better, they… Continue reading Media Mixing

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Generator X 2.0 Revisited

Remember back to early December? We posted about the GeneratorX 2.0 workshop, an exhibition of designer works who used various digital fabrication techniques to produce amazing items. ArtDaily reports on a presentation entitled “Beyond the Screen”, where participants from the GeneratorX 2.0 workshop will show their works. As we’ve suggested many times before: there are… Continue reading Generator X 2.0 Revisited

3D Vase with a Difference

In the past we’ve posted on specific and unusual objects printed using 3D print technology. This is another one – with a slight difference. This object, the Kisos flower vase can be purchased! Yes, the maker, Umamy, offers a limited run of these beautiful vases for sale on eBay at a cost of USD$400 each.… Continue reading 3D Vase with a Difference

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ProtoCAM Service

According to their website, ProtoCAM is the: largest rapid prototyping bureau in the Eastern United States, providing a unique blend of manufacturing engineering / rapid prototyping consulting along with stereolithography and other advanced rapid prototyping techniques.   While they do not provide instant online quotes, they do accept a large variety of CAD formats, including… Continue reading ProtoCAM Service

3D Printing Assists Cardiac Procedure

As usual, inventive minds are developing innovative uses for 3D printing. This time European medical technicians developed an “anatomically correct 3D rapid prototyping model” of a patient’s heart in an STL file. They then used a 3D printer (Zcorp 510) to punch out the model. Why do this? Because they were then able to easily… Continue reading 3D Printing Assists Cardiac Procedure

Free Stuff

Chris Anderson, editor of Wired Magazine and proponent of the Long Tail theory, speaks at Nokia World 2007 regarding his newest theory: Free. That’s what happens to business, the economy and indeed civilization itself when advanced technologies, including 3D printing and its inherent one-to-one manufacturing capability become widespread. Anderson speaks on the effects these developments… Continue reading Free Stuff

3D Landscapes

PrintWeek reports on a printing company in Wales who have used a 3D printer to produce an accurate model of the Teign Estuary in Devon, UK. Evidently Bluesky’s 3D model includes: a real-world view of the estuary and surrounding area, including trees and buildings. We’ve previously seen 3D prints of objects, buildings and artistic designs… Continue reading 3D Landscapes

3D Toys with Fabr

Many people are considering unique uses for and implications of 3D printing. Lou Amadio wants to be able to print toys for his four-year-old son, or at least create replacement components for those toys inevitably broken or lost by the youngster. Lou’s approach is a bit more extreme than many might consider: he’s not only… Continue reading 3D Toys with Fabr

Two More 3D Print Services

This week we uncovered two more 3D print services: Metropolitan Works – Their Digital Manufacturing Centre is the UK’s “largest resource of new technology for rapid prototyping, manufacture, research and experimentation”. Envizage – an Australian-based company providing a wide variety of rapid prototyping services, including not only 3D printing, but also selective laser sintering, stereolithography,… Continue reading Two More 3D Print Services

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3D Scanner from NextEngine

We’ve discussed the idea of having large libraries of 3D models in the future, so that we can quickly print out any required object. But where exactly do these models come from? There are only two possibilities:   Design it yourself. Obviously difficult, especially if you don’t have specialized training and a whole lot of… Continue reading 3D Scanner from NextEngine

Kids and 3D Printers

A technology center in Wahpeton, North Dakota, USA, now offers students the use of a 3D printer. We’re quite certain this isn’t the only school doing so, but we suspect a trend is beginning. In fact, it isn’t the only one. Thorpe St Andrew School in Norfolk, UK is also installing a 3D printer, specifically… Continue reading Kids and 3D Printers


We’ve been wondering how property rights will work in the future, when anyone will be able to punch out objects on their 3D printer as necessary. Will you go to Home Depot to get that bolt? Or perhaps you will just print one? Do you have the design for the bolt? Maybe you need to… Continue reading Fab-onomics

Electric Light Shoe

Freedom of Creation is at it again – this time creating an astonishing 3D shoe for a Japanese marketing campaign. The project was quite complex, as one can see from the incredible detail in the shoe object. From the press release: After seeing the concept from StawberryFrog, Janne Kyttanen and Mads Thomsen conceived a microcosm… Continue reading Electric Light Shoe

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Printing Tissue by Ink-Jet

It’s not exactly Fabbing as we know it, but the World Intellectual Property Organization now includes an entry on printing live tissue. Yes, I mean punching out “mammalian cells” via an ink-jet process. Evidently the cells are deposited in layers, much like 3D printing, onto an existing substrate. In some cases the substrate is itself… Continue reading Printing Tissue by Ink-Jet

.STL ?

Frequently we’ve mentioned the use of .STL files when describing 3D printing services. But what are they, exactly? .STL is a computer file format, specifically designed to capture a three-dimensional model of an object. This kind of file format is frequently accepted by 3D print services as a way for you to tell them precisely… Continue reading .STL ?

AlphaPrototypes Service

We’ve uncovered yet another Rapid Prototyping 3D Print service: AlphaPrototypes. This west coast USA-based firm provides a simple way to upload your .STL files and print high-quality 3D objects, shipped to you “in about 24 hours.” While they don’t identify the specific 3D printer being used, it is a ZCorp model – the favorite among… Continue reading AlphaPrototypes Service

3D Science Fiction

Wouldn’t anyone like a boss like Phillip Torrone’s? The drafter had access to a Spectrum Z510 3D Printer at work, and his boss let him test the system in an unusual way: Whenever we had to reset the system or replace the print heads, we would run a test file through. My boss at the… Continue reading 3D Science Fiction

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The Fabaroni

Ok, we’ve heard of expensive media for 3D printers, paper, sugar and other wacky stuff going in “raw” and coming out as usable 3D objects. Today it’s pasta dough! The Fabaroni home-made 3D printer is capable of printing 3D objects with a moving head, much like other inexpensive 3D printers. In fact, it “loosely follows… Continue reading The Fabaroni

DesktopFactory LOSES Innovator of the Year Award

Our favorite yet-to-be-seen device, the low-cost DesktopFactory 125ci 3D printer has lost out to Tangible Express as the recipient of the first annual “Rapid” Innovator of year award, as determined by the Low Volume Manufacturers Association. Who is Tangible Express? They are a 3D fabrication service, like many others. However, previous posts in Fabbaloo typically… Continue reading DesktopFactory LOSES Innovator of the Year Award

More Acoustical Objects

Architectradure reports on yet another experiment with sound making devices produced by 3D printing technology, following up on our recent acoustical post. In this experiment, designer and engineer Amit Zoran has produced a unique guitar by assembling parts designed with software and produced by a 3D printer. Using specialized software, Zoran designed chambers suitable for… Continue reading More Acoustical Objects

The Future of Personal Manufacturing

Platform Design has an interesting article and video on the topic of personal fabrication. Presenter Neil Gershenfeld speaks less on specific device and technologies, but more on the social aspects – including the sense personal power that appears when individuals have the ability to create the things they want. He also discusses the issues that… Continue reading The Future of Personal Manufacturing

Rapid Prototyping used to Create Sound

Jun Murakoshi is a researcher in Department of Design Science, Graduate School of Engineering, Chiba University, Japan. Among his works is this interesting device made via rapid prototyping technology: the “noisy instrument”. According to Jun, the device: is a wearable instrument for listening the noise like seashell makes.   One can imagine future experiments where… Continue reading Rapid Prototyping used to Create Sound

Investment Attitude to 3D Printing Shifts?

Investment analyst firm Piper Jaffray has upgraded their assessment of 3D Systems from “Sell” to “Neutral”. Evidently PJ was impressed with 3D’s newest product announcement, particularly its unique curing technology. This seems to be further evidence that 3D printing is viewed not only positively by mainstream observers, but that it is even being viewed at… Continue reading Investment Attitude to 3D Printing Shifts?

Psychological Experiment Uses Fabbing

3D printing is being used to manufacture custom objects for psychological experiments. The shapes are of typical objects, but they are not robust enough for normal use, since most 3D printers today cannot produce objects of sufficient strength. However, the psychological experiment involves subjects merely touching the objects to identify them by shape. This use… Continue reading Psychological Experiment Uses Fabbing

Bowyer Raps on Rep-Rap

At Poptech 2007 Adrian Bowyer presented concepts of machine reproduction, focusing on the open source project, RepRap. Yes, that’s correct: machines replicating themselves. RepRap is an open project attempting to be the first “practical self-copying 3D printer”. In the 18 minute video Bowyer shows us a breakdown of the machine, including delineating which of its… Continue reading Bowyer Raps on Rep-Rap

Fabbing = Teleportation

Well, it happened faster than we had anticipated, but there are now people teleporting objects using 3D printing technology. De Zeen Design Magazine has a very interesting post and pictures of emailed objects that have been printed on a 3D printer, thus effectively accomplishing teleportation. We’re not quite sure about the scanning part on the… Continue reading Fabbing = Teleportation

3D Systems Announces Printer

3D Systems has announced they will be producing the ProJet HD3000 3-D Production System. This item is a “high-end professional” system that is capable of “fine feature detail” and “superior surface quality”. The device also includes factory-like features such as a very large build chamber, parts stacking and automated operation. Evidently this machine is very… Continue reading 3D Systems Announces Printer

Printable Computers?

HowStuffWorks has an interesting article describing methods of “printing computers”. Now you’d think at first this is simply printing out the semiconductor chips, but the article describes how MIT and others are attempting to use 3D printing to print the rest of the computer as well! So far MIT has managed to print thermal actuators,… Continue reading Printable Computers?

ZCorp ZPrinter 450 Named Revolutionary has named ZCorp‘s ZPrinter 450 as one of their 15 “revolutionary inventions of 2007”. Alongside the 450 were such notables as the iPhone, Amazon’s Kindle, the XO Laptop and iRobot’s Looj. We’ve covered the Zprinter 450 before, and agree – it is an amazing device. Now, if only it were a little less expensive…… Continue reading ZCorp ZPrinter 450 Named Revolutionary

Stratasys Focuses

Stratasys, makers of the interesting FDM 900MC digital manufacturing system, have dropped marketing of the Arcam line of devices. They had been marketing the European-based Arcam products, which apparently specialize in printing 3D metal objects. What does this mean? We think that the strongly increasing demand for non-metallic printing (which appears to be more mature… Continue reading Stratasys Focuses

Not Quite a 3D Library

Over at the Adobe Design Center Think Tank, Allan Chochinov posts an interesting analysis of “fictional products” from the design point of view. Fictional products are those which don’t actually exist but parallel existing products. Consider a speculative version of a future iPod, for example. Chochinov points us to online services where designers of such… Continue reading Not Quite a 3D Library

Objet Videos

We seem to be hearing from Objet frequently lately. Just to keep up the trend, I’ve found a couple of interesting videos involving Objet printers, including the Eden 250. While the results aren’t quite as striking as those from a Z Corp printer, the Objet is certainly a lot less messy. Via YouTube and YouTube

Top 5 Posts of 2007

  While Fabbaloo just started publishing in 2007, we still believe it’s appropriate to list our most popular posts of 2007. 5. Real Objects from Virtual Designs. We described Fabjectory’s niche service for creating 3D objects from your Second Life avatar or Nintendo Mii. 4. DesktopFactory Wins Award. We reported on DesktopFactory’s win at the… Continue reading Top 5 Posts of 2007

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Three Three Dimensional Wishes for 2008

It’s that time of year when we must reflect on the past and look forward to the future. While there were many interesting developments in 3D printing during 2007, the most newsworthy item was far and away DesktopFactory’s announcement of their sub-$5000 3D printer. But what about 2008? What should we expect to see? We’re… Continue reading Three Three Dimensional Wishes for 2008

Considerations for 3D Printing

We frequently scan the Internet to find the latest on Fabbing, and lately we keep finding many postings regarding DesktopFactory’s sub-$5000 3D printer. We’re guilty of that ourselves.Many of these postings imply that 3D printing is going to be relatively straightforward. Just purchase the now-inexpensive printer and you’re good to go! But it’s not like… Continue reading Considerations for 3D Printing

QuickQuote by QuickARCProvides Quick Quotes

Unlike many 3D Printing services, QuickARC has a new online facility for generating quotes for printing complex 3D objects. Typically, this particular service would be used by Architects or Builders for developing building models (as is shown in their website’s header). QuickARC has the ability to accept 3D models in two modes:   Architect’s Zone… Continue reading QuickQuote by QuickARCProvides Quick Quotes

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More on FigurePrints

There’s been quite a buzz around the net regarding the newly opened FigurePrints service, which prints 3D replicas of World of Warcraft characters. We’ve seen many articles, but most simply mention it briefly. Meanwhile, WowInsider posts a complete interview with FigurePrints founder Ed Fries. As a long-time WoW player (since it was Beta!) and tech-whiz,… Continue reading More on FigurePrints

Cosmic Modelz

The rash of 3D services continues. This time it’s Cosmic Modelz, which appears to use Z Corp printers to produce “one-of-a-kind collectibles” from your own artwork. While not open yet, it remains to be seen if they can compete with JuJups or some of the other 3D print services. Via Cosmic Modelz

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3D Printer Found in Department Store!

Yes, this is real! A Make Magazine reader posted pictures and description of this Dimension printer found at Toronto’s Umbra Concept Store. Evidently visitors can drop by to see the printer creating objects for Umbra’s designers – who are occasionally present to answer questions. I’m not sure how successful this concept would be for drop-in… Continue reading 3D Printer Found in Department Store!

“Will 3D Printing Finally Go Mainstream?”

Apparently so – this article appears twice: once in C|NET and again in FrogDesign. Tim Lebrecht, Director of Marketing for frog design (frog is most famous for designing many Apple products) postulates that the emergence of several 3D printing services, such as Jujups and Cosmic Modelz is a result of recent price-shattering devices such as… Continue reading “Will 3D Printing Finally Go Mainstream?”

Designer Uses 3D Printing

As many designers have discovered, 3D printing can be very useful to render an actual three-dimensional model of their imagined item. From idea to sketch to drawing, the next stage is a model. But rather than using the traditional tedious process of manual construction, contemporary designers are frequently finding that a 3D printer can be… Continue reading Designer Uses 3D Printing

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Online Group for 3D Fans

Dave Mainwaring has created a Google Group for discussions of 3D printing technology. There’s not many members yet, but I am sure it will grow. Via Google Groups

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Objet Wins Gold Award

At the Euromold fair Objet Geometries won the Gold award for their new Connex 500 3D printer. We’ve covered this amazing device before, but if you didn’t read our post, the 500 is notable for its ability to print using multiple materials simultaneously. This means that you can print objects with hard and soft parts,… Continue reading Objet Wins Gold Award

Buy Your Own Fab – Today!

It’s getting dangerously close to that holiday season, and what better gift than your own fab? What, you don’t have $40,000 for a Z-Corp? Neither do we. Sure, we’ve heard about the DesktopFactory $5000 3D printer, but who’s seen them in the stores? Meanwhile, you could always build your own Fab@Home or RepRap 3D printer… Continue reading Buy Your Own Fab – Today!

Another Building-Sized Fab

Two posts on gigantor-sized fabs this week! The Information Sciences Institute’s Dr. Behrokh Khoshnevis’s Contour Crafting Technology enables fabbing on a building-sized scale. Apparently the Doctor plans on releasing the USD$1.5M machine very soon, and we will soon see if this type of “personal” manufacturing will work. Be sure to check out the videos, especially… Continue reading Another Building-Sized Fab

Stratasys FDM 900mc

Stratasys is showing off their new FDM 900mc Additive Fabrication System at the Frankfurt EuroMold trade show. While WAY out of the financial range of hobbyists, this device uses different movement technology to ensure finer control over additive mechanisms, resulting in greater printed resolution. The big feature is a truly massive 3x2x3 foot build chamber,… Continue reading Stratasys FDM 900mc

RedEye Goes European

RedEye RPM is opening a new “European rapid prototyping and direct digital manufacturing center in Leuven, Belgium.” RedEye is a sub of Stratasys, which produces high-end 3D printing equipment. RedEye provides 3D printing services to engineering firms and manufacturers for low-volume runs, presumably using current Stratasys hardware – possibly including that new FDM 900mc device.… Continue reading RedEye Goes European

3D Trendwatching has selected Desktop Fabbing (or as they call it, “Make It Yourself”, MIY) as one of their eight Important Consumer Trends to Watch in 2008. They mention the several 3D printing or fabbing services such as Ponoko and of course the omnipresent yet-to-be-seen-in-the-wild DesktopFactory USD$5000 desktop fab. Along with “MIY”, the seven other consumer… Continue reading 3D Trendwatching

Printing an Entire Building!

It’s not exactly desktop fabbing, but it is definitely interesting. French architectural firm R&Sie plans on building an “Ice Museum” by fabbing the entire building from pre-made wood media. Unlike typical 3D printers that create objects by gradually adding material, the technique to be used for the Ice Museum will be subtractive – sheets of… Continue reading Printing an Entire Building!

Make Your Own Watch!

Frederic Hakoune uses 3D printing technology to produce his own watch – and it works. Well, he didn’t print the clockwork mechanism itself, but the housing certainly looks good. Frederic posts pictures of the entire process, from design blueprints, the actual printing operation and of course assembly. Via Facebook

Jujups Launches is a new 3D printing service that has launched before the holiday season – and just in time, since their main product is Christmas-themed picture frames. Sign in to their service and you can design the frame yourself, or let them provide a design automatically. The price: USD$29.95 Jujups uses a Z-Corp printer, capable… Continue reading Jujups Launches

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Simon Wardley Speaks

Simon Wardley posts a 24 minute video of his talk from the September 2006 EuroOscon, in which he speculates about the affects of 3D printing technology on the future of manufacturing – including the revolutionary concept of a kind of “hardware compiler”. This simultaneously interesting and amusing presentation covers the historical view of how such… Continue reading Simon Wardley Speaks

World of Warcraft Figure Printing

First Fabjectory, now The former can print your Second Life avatar or Mii; the latter can print your WoW character in 3D. Well, they can after December 11th, if I read that sign correctly. We’re not sure what printer is being used by Figureprints, but they say: “Using 3D modeling techniques pioneered by special… Continue reading World of Warcraft Figure Printing

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OGLE 3D Model Extractor Available

The folks at Eyebeam OpenLab have produced (and released as open source software) OGLE, a very interesting package that: allows for the capture and re-use of 3D geometry data from 3D graphics applications running on Microsoft Windows. It works by observing the data flowing between 3D applications and the system’s OpenGL library, and recording that… Continue reading OGLE 3D Model Extractor Available

3D Trainwreck?

Tom Easton blogs about how 3D printing could potentially be very disruptive to industry, specifically by disturbing traditional business models when vast amounts of items are printed at home instead of sold in stores (online or offline). Apparently he’s considering writing a book on the topic. I agree with this premise; we will likely see… Continue reading 3D Trainwreck?

Wall Street Journal Covers Fab@Home

The Wall Street Journal Online has published a new video that introduces the concept of personal fabbing. They focus on the MIT Fab@Home project (which we covered earlier) and discuss the future implications of personal manufacturing. The video demonstrates some unusual techniques, such as embedding electronics during printing – resulting in a working flashlight (after… Continue reading Wall Street Journal Covers Fab@Home

Generator.X 2.0

Generator.X 2.0 is a “a workshop and exhibition about digital fabrication and generative systems” in which 15 designers will be selected to participate. Using modern digital fabrication techniques, including 3D printing and laser cutting, the artists will explore the possibilities of these new manufacturing mediums from an artistic and architectural point of view. Applications close… Continue reading Generator.X 2.0

The Economist on Fabbing

Personal Fabbing is slowly being picked up by the mainstream media, and this time it’s The Economist. The revered weekly magazine has an online article that provides the basics of personal fabbing, (which they call “Bespoke Manufacturing”) including the wisdom of Neil Gershenfeld of the Media Lab at MIT, the Ponoko fabbing service and of… Continue reading The Economist on Fabbing

Center for Responsible Nanotechnology

Jamais Cascio, Director of Impacts Analysis at the Center for Responsible Nanotechnology (CRN), describes his thoughts on the implications of future “nanofactories”, which to me sounds a lot like my vision of the eventual end-goal of 3D printing and fabbing. Among the topics covered by Jamais were design, distribution, “toner” or its 3d printing equivalent,… Continue reading Center for Responsible Nanotechnology

Personal Fabbing In Science Fiction

Cory Doctorow, notable science fiction writer and Boing Boing blogger, published a futuristic story last month in Forbes magazine. The story paints an interesting picture of how important personal manufacturing may become – and also how venture capitalists may fail. EscapePod also has an audio version of this story. Via Forbes, EscapePod and Craphound

Wired Writes Up 3D Printing

WIRED magazine has published an article describing how 3D Printers will (and are) being used for various interesting purposes. In the article a worker at Frog Design (famous for designing the iPod and other Apple enclosures) uses 3D equipment to produce a unique ring for his fiance. The article goes on to describe how they… Continue reading Wired Writes Up 3D Printing

Build Your Own Fab

I Make Things is publishing four videos of weekend projects that will lead you to building your own RepRap 3D printer. The first episode covers the electronics, and includes a short video explaining the basic components required and how to put them together. RepRap is an open source project for a 3D additive printer that… Continue reading Build Your Own Fab

PolyJet Video

Further to this post, Objet has posted a video of their new composite-media technology, using the Connex 500 3D printer. The video shows how two reservoirs of different media can be used to produce objects not previously printable in a single pass. Watch the production of cellphone covers with differently colored keypads, a hairbrush and… Continue reading PolyJet Video

Low Cost 3D Print Service

Using three ThermoJet 3D printers, John Tangerås’ company, Tangerås Verksted & Støperi of Norway, will offer a 3D printing service beginning in January 2008. The print fee will be €25 plus €200 per litre of raw material consumed. Maximum size of the printed objects is 250mm X by 190mm Y by 200mm Z. Pictured is… Continue reading Low Cost 3D Print Service

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Composite Materials used in 3D Printer

Objet announced their “Polyjet Matrix technology”, which apparently enables the use of multiple materials simultaneously in a 3D printer. This is a major step, since it will permit the printing of many different kinds of objects – especially those with parts that have different physical characteristics. Most 3D printers are “additive”, meaning they simply deposit… Continue reading Composite Materials used in 3D Printer

Real Objects from Virtual Designs

Most of us don’t have access to personal fabs yet, so in the interim you must use services. The good news is that there are several available. One interesting service is Fabjectory, which uses 3D Printing technology to produce real artifacts from virtual designs. That means you can send them your SketchUp designs and have… Continue reading Real Objects from Virtual Designs

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DesktopFactory Wins Award

They won the award even before the product is released! Yes, DesktopFactory’s famous-but-not-yet seen inexpensive 3D printer has won Popular Science’s Best of What’s New Award for 2007 in the “Home Tech” category. Fabbaloo has covered the Desktop Factory 125ci 3D printer before, again, and will no doubt again when it finally hits the store… Continue reading DesktopFactory Wins Award

Metal Fabbing

Interesting speculation on how fabs could create metal objects in the future. Today fabs use simple powdered or liquid media that is easily melted (see CandyFab – it uses kitchen sugar!) This makes it easy, but produces objects that can be fragile or at least not particularly durable. The idea is that by depositing metallic… Continue reading Metal Fabbing

Design Studio uses Fabbing

Article describing how 3D printing is being used in modern design studios. The story of Janne Kyttänen, who owns the Freedom of Creation company in Helsinki, which produces award-winning interior accessories using 3D printing techniques. You must check out FOC’s portfolio of design products. Lights, accessories and even textiles are produced with several rapid manufacturing… Continue reading Design Studio uses Fabbing

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Evil CandyFab 4000

The CandyFab 4000 is definitely not a commercial product and is most appropriate for those of you already handy with tools. The CandyFab can be constructed for around $500 in readily available parts, and can use output from common 3D modeling software. The device is designed primarily for fun – it doesn’t have a very… Continue reading Evil CandyFab 4000

Garage Fabbing?

As fabbing equipment continues to fall, the ability to create becomes available to more and more people. While I envision a future where people have 3D printing equipment in their homes right beside their 2D (paper) printers, this forum discussion suggests a future in which fabbing equipment is dispersed to the public – but only… Continue reading Garage Fabbing?

Fabbing Videos

Here is a great collection of fabbing videos from Objet featuring several of their 3D printers. If you’ve never seen fabbing, this is a good place to begin. Note that these particular models are suitable for industrial prototyping, and not consumer-level desktop units. Many of the videos demonstrate not only the actual object deposition, but… Continue reading Fabbing Videos

Stratasys Reports Record Third Quarter Results

Stratasys, the makers of the popular Dimension series of 3D printers, seems to be doing very well indeed. They shipped some 521 units in the 3rd quarter, improved over 383 for the previous quarter in 2006. From the release:   We expect to maintain positive momentum in our high-end system business, with another new product… Continue reading Stratasys Reports Record Third Quarter Results

TechShop Workshop

Techshop is a California-based chain of public machine workshops. They provide access to equipment that otherwise would be impossible for home-based hobbyists. Among the specialized equipment they offer is a Dimension 3D Printer. Here’s their own overview: The TechShop workshop provides a wide variety of machinery and tools for the open and unlimited use of… Continue reading TechShop Workshop

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PopMech on Fab at Home

Popular Mechanics magazine has discovered Fabbing and has published an interesting article and video mostly focused on the Fab@Home project. Fab at Home is a very worthy project, but as you watch the video it’s apparent that it’s primary target is techies. Nevertheless, the video suggests unusual uses of the fab: printing chocolate, batteries, circuits… Continue reading PopMech on Fab at Home

3D Sneeze in your Living Room

Marcel Wanders, a dutch designer, has created a very unusual vase. It’s based on a 3D scan of an “airborne snotty”. The picture tells the story. Via Marcel Wanders Studio