Exclusive: Inside the CubeX Factory

Hidden in the sleepy coastal town of Clevedon, UK, lies the secret factory that produces 3D Systems’ CubeX 3D printer. We recently toured the factory to find out how these popular machines are created.    Aside from a modest research and development unit, the entire facility is dedicated to production of CubeX’s. It is indeed… Continue reading Exclusive: Inside the CubeX Factory

BFB Fades Away

One of 3D printing’s most venerable brands is set to disappear! Bits From Bytes, a.k.a. BFB, will no longer exist as a brand. According to their Facebook post:   On April 1, 2013 we will be discontinuing the 3D Touch and Rapman and integrating our website and social channels with 3D Systems. Both printers will… Continue reading BFB Fades Away

Categorized as Corporate Tagged

Mod Your Un-Moddable 3D Printer

Some 3D printers are made for modification, such as the RepRap kits or early MakerBots. But some 3D printers were specifically designed to be used “out of the box” without modification. These 3D printers were not designed for modification by ingenious owners.    However, in spite of such design constraints, we see continuing effort by… Continue reading Mod Your Un-Moddable 3D Printer

BFB’s AXON Updated

For readers using BitsFromBytes personal 3D printing equipment (that means a RapMan, BFB 3000 or 3D Touch), there’s a present for you to download: a new version of AXON.    AXON is the software used by BFB devices to prep the files for printing on BFB’s line of 3D printers. It accepts STL and converts… Continue reading BFB’s AXON Updated

Categorized as Software Tagged

Christmas at Bits From Bytes

The folks at Bits From Bytes have an interesting giveaway taking place this holiday season: their Advent Calendar 2011. According to Wikipedia, an Advent Calendar is “a special calendar which is used to count or celebrate the days of Advent in anticipation of Christmas”. Typically it involves a surprise each day, and BFB is doing… Continue reading Christmas at Bits From Bytes

BFB Updates the Rapman

The venerable Rapman personal 3D printer has had a bit of an update, the first, we believe, since BFB was acquired by 3D Systems. The new version, 3.2, includes a few improvements on an already terrific 3D printer kit for assembly. Here’s what we see:    Touchscreen interface, likely replicated from the Rapman’s big brother,… Continue reading BFB Updates the Rapman

Categorized as printer Tagged

More on the 3DTouch 3D Printer

After yesterday’s announcement from 3D Systems / BFB on their new 3DTouch printer, we sought additional details. Today we’ve learned a few more things about this very interesting device, including why it’s called the “3DTouch”. Check out the much more detailed image above (click for larger view). Here’s our latest findings:     The “touch”… Continue reading More on the 3DTouch 3D Printer

Made In Space: Update

Last week we mentioned Made In Space’s achievement of testing two commercial 3D printers in a simulated weightless environment. But we wondered which 3D printers were used, as the material we saw did not specify the printer involved – only that one of the printers originated from 3D Systems.   Today we see a press… Continue reading Made In Space: Update

The BFB 3000 Plus

BFB’s already-assembled inexpensive 3D printer has now become the BFB 3000 Plus. The new version is very similar to the original BFB 3000, but has several enhancements.    Our understanding is that the Plus’s improvements focus on two aspects: simplifying ease of use and machine quality. The machine’s print bed is easier to adjust and… Continue reading The BFB 3000 Plus

Categorized as printer Tagged

3D Printing on CNN

CNN Money’s page today had a front-page article dedicated to 3D printing, featuring an interview with 3D System’s Rajeev Kulkarni, who spoke about their newly acquired BFB line of inexpensive 3D printers. He said:    This is our attempt now to get at the consumer level, where we make 3-D printing accessible to the mass… Continue reading 3D Printing on CNN


We had the opportunity to spend some time with the BFB gang at London’s Plastics Design and Moulding show. They were demonstrating their flagship product, the BFB 3000 3D printer, as well as a 3D Systems V-Flash from their parent company.    We spoke at length with BFB CTO and Founder Ian Adkins (above), who… Continue reading BFB at PDM

Categorized as Event Tagged

Hands On With The BFB 3000: Unboxing and Setup

Fabbaloo Labs has obtained a brand-new, two-headed BFB 3000 3D printer for detailed experimentation and evaluation. We’ll talk about our unboxing and setup experience in this post, while upcoming posts will focus on the 3000’s operation and software.    The BFB 3000 ships in a rather large 38kg box. It’s large for one obvious reason:… Continue reading Hands On With The BFB 3000: Unboxing and Setup

The Different Flavors of Home 3D Printers

We’ve been reading a long thread on the MakerBot Operator’s Google Group initiated by Shawn M, who is considering purchasing a MakerBot Thing-O-Matic 3D printer. He asks about the level of effort required to produce high-quality parts with this particular device.    As is often the case, a simple question led to some insights. A… Continue reading The Different Flavors of Home 3D Printers

Bits From Bytes Gets New Website and a RapChick!

We’ve been waiting to see what 3D Systems will do with their latest corporate acquisition, Bits From Bytes. BfB’s market is quite a diversion from 3D System’s normal industrial/commercial clientele. How will they take on this marketplace. This week we see two elements of their new strategy.   First, 3D Systems has completely replaced the… Continue reading Bits From Bytes Gets New Website and a RapChick!

BfB Acquisition Reactions From Across The Interwebs

There have been many opinions raised after the blockbuster announcement of 3D Systems acquiring Bits From Bytes. The official announcements are here and here. We scoured the web to find reactions:     European Plastics News: gained a 17% share of the worldwide 3D printer market in its first year of operation.    Rachel Park:  My… Continue reading BfB Acquisition Reactions From Across The Interwebs

The Suits Meet The Hobbyists

Up to now, the 3D printer space has been occupied by two entirely different groups: the high-end, high-priced commercial printers typically affordable only by large firms or service bureaus, and the hobbyist, open-source market of low-end, low-priced devices typically found in DIY kit form. The two groups could not be more different in almost all… Continue reading The Suits Meet The Hobbyists

Bre’s Pumped!

We’re still excited by 3D System’s acquisition of BfB, and we’re not the only ones excited. We wondered how this move would affect BfB’s biggest competitor, MakerBot. Would 3D System’s massive resources put such a push into BfB that MakerBot would be sidelined? We contacted MakerBot mandarin Bre Prettis for his thoughts:   I wish… Continue reading Bre’s Pumped!

Why 3D Systems Chose BfB

After Tuesday’s big announcement of 3D Systems acquiring Bits From Bytes, we wondered why 3DS chose to acquire BfB instead of the other major hobbyist 3D printer manufacturer, MakerBot. To get answers we asked 3D Systems VP of Marketing Cathy Lewis, who explained the reasons quite clearly:    They have demonstrated execution and achieved the… Continue reading Why 3D Systems Chose BfB

Blockbuster Announcement: 3D Systems Acquires Bits From Bytes!

In a totally stunning announcement today 3D Systems has acquired the Bits From Bytes operation based in Bristol, UK.    This is perhaps the biggest corporate manoeuvre we’ve yet seen in the 3D printer space, and heralds a bold move by 3D Systems into the ultra low-end  3D printer market, now competing directly against such… Continue reading Blockbuster Announcement: 3D Systems Acquires Bits From Bytes!

Another Slicing Option for BfB

BfB (Bits From Bytes) has announced the availability of a new 3D slicing software option that will be bundled with each of their new 3D printers: Axon. This software is built upon the traditional Skeinforge software that performs the delicate task of converting a 3D model into layered slices suitable for 3D printing. The issue… Continue reading Another Slicing Option for BfB

Bensons Has the BFB 3000

We’ve written about the BFB 3000 before: it’s a fully assembled 3D printer priced under  £2,000. Marketed in the UK and US by A1 Technologies, we now see that the device is being sold in Australia and New Zealand by Benson Machines.    The BFB 3000 is produced by Bits From Bytes and is a… Continue reading Bensons Has the BFB 3000