Dec 23, 2017

Water Cooled E3D Titan Aqua Hot End

E3D just presented their water-cooled hot end: the Titan Aqua. The primary usage scenario for the water-cooled hot end is in 3D printers that have heated chamber or passively heated enclosures.

Presentation video:

More about this water cooled extruder can be found at:

Sep 25, 2017

Thomas will show you how to fix your filament

He will also teach you how you can ruin it in the first place...

3D Printed Military Submersible

Engineers in ORNL made military’s first 3D-printed 30 feet long submersible hull made from carbon fiber composite material.
The Optionally Manned Technology Demonstrator is a prototype vessel that could be used to deploy divers, logistics capabilities, and sensors. It was made much cheaper and faster when compared with traditional manufacturing methods.

We don't need more weapons guys. We need more technology for permanent peace.

Source news release with more information:

Sep 24, 2017

Two Great Surface Finishing Tutorials

I was researching YouTube to find some good surface finishing, smoothing and painting tutorials, here are the two good ones I found.

First one is from Jure Korber from Slovenia. He made this detailed tutorial and has some good tips like the using of wooden stick to hold the piece.

Second is from Commando Designs

Hopefully, you found them useful!

New Prusa I3 MK3 is Released!!!

The original Prusa I3 Mk2 is one of the best 3D printers currently available and it just got better with the new version: the MK3.
It features many improvements and cool upgrades that go beyond what many much more expensive machines have.

New features:
  • Filament sensor
  • Power Panic
  • RPM sensing fans and Noctua
  • Ambient thermistor and P.I.N.D.A 2 with thermistor
  • EINSY RAMBo motherboard
  • Trinamic2130 drivers with layer shift detection, faster and silent printing
  • New Y axis
  • Bondtech extruder
  • Magnetic MK52 Heatbed
  • Powder coated PEI spring steel print sheet
  • Ready for OctoPrint
It will be priced at $749

MK3 presentation video:

MK3 release post with all the details:

Cutting Acrylic with EleksMaker Laser on HyperCube 3D Printer

Chris from Tech2C YT channel made a video showing various settings on his EleksMaker 2.5w laser diode for cutting a 3mm Acrylic sheet. It is mounted on HyperCube 3D printer.
It is an interesting video if you want to go into lasing acrylic with a cheap laser diode and you want to learn something and save some experimentation time.

Tip from the comments: black acrylic is easiest to cut since it absorbs the most energy.

HyperCube 3D Printer/CNC on Thingiverse:

DIY Multi Extrusion Tool Switching by Rolmie

Rolmie from Germany is developing a multi-extrusion tool changer suitable for many common 3d printers. Interesting project you may want to follow up.

Project description:

Single and dual extruder FDM printers are commonly available these days but machines with support for 3 or more hotends are still hard to find. The current approach to dual/multi extrusion is either a XY carriage moving multiple hotends or a single hotend with several filaments feeding into it (eg. E3D Cyclops, Diamond Hotend, Prusa i3 MK2 Multi Material).
Both designs have their own limitations with regard to scaleability. For the first it is size and weight of the carriage, the second requires all materials to be within a similar temperature range.
This design overcomes some of these limitations and requires only off the shelf components (pins, bushings, magnets), 3D printed parts and most importantly no additional motors, servos or other electrical components. Modification of most CoreXY/H-Bot style printers should be possible

Prototype video:

Project page:

Tool head making a contact with on of the extruders

Sep 23, 2017

3D Printable DIY Scuba Diving Thrusters

Someone developed low-cost 3d printable underwater thrusters for scuba diving. There is a full set of instructions and files available.

Tech specs:

  • 1.85 mph underwater speed! 
  • 20 minutes runtime. 
  • $153 for flying underwater at speed of 3 km/h
  • DT700 brushless motors: 2 pcs x $14
  • Kort nozzle for DT700: 2 pcs x $35
  • ESC speed controller at least 40A with BEC: $4
  • Servo tester: $5
  • Slide Potentiometer any from 5K to 30K Linear: $2
  • SLA battery 9Ah: 2 pcs x $22

Here are the thrusters in action:

Detailed construction guide and all the files: project page:

Angus And His Experiance With 3D Printed Combat Robot Parts

Angus from Maker's Muse shares his knowledge and experience with a DIY battle robot he created. Since it uses a lot of 3d printed parts it is interesting to see how they cope in this type of application. The robot is named "Vanguard", and it's a 30lb of pure machine aggression :-)

Sep 22, 2017

Simple DIY 3D Printable Bluetooth Speaker

Here is a simple and easy 3d printable battery-powered Bluetooth speaker you can make with even basic electronics skills. It was developed and published by Hardiq Verma.

Detailed construction guide and all the files can be found at:

HRL 3D Printing High-strength Aluminum

HRL made a major breakthrough in metal additive manufacturing by developing a process enabling 3d printing of non-weldable metals like aluminum. This will certainly play a big role in future manufacturing facilities and product development.

Project description:
MALIBU, Calif. Sept 20, 2017 — HRL Laboratories, LLC, has made a breakthrough in metallurgy, developing a technique for successfully 3D printing high-strength aluminum alloys — including types Al7075 and Al6061 — that opens the door to additive manufacturing of engineering-relevant alloys.
HRL's nanoparticle functionalization technique solves this problem by decorating high-strength unweldable alloy powders with specially selected nanoparticles. The nanoparticle-functionalized powder is fed into a 3D printer, which layers the powder and laser-fuses each layer to construct a three-dimensional object.  During melting and solidification, the nanoparticles act as nucleation sites for the desired alloy microstructure, preventing hot cracking and allowing for retention of full alloy strength in the manufactured part.
Because melting and solidification in additive manufacturing is analogous to welding, HRL's nanoparticle functionalization can also be used to make unweldable alloys weldable

Video presentation:

HRL news post:

Aug 30, 2017

3 Simple Hacks to Protect your Files from Theft, Piracy, and Plagiarism

Angus from Maker's Muse shows how he protects his files from theft, piracy, and plagiarism. He uses watermarks, invisible or hidden watermarks, and hiding a text into a file. All those measures can be defeated but that is just nature of the digital world.

Maker's Muse page:

3D Printable DIY Moka Pot Made with Formfutura Volcano PLA

Stefan from CNCKitchen in Germany designed and successfully made a fully functional 3d printed coffee Moka pot. Due to high temperature needed to reach the internal water pressure he used Formfutura Volcano PLA. Do keep in mind that this is a demonstration and not everyday usage object. The pressure build-up in a closed plastic vessel can be dangerous.

Thingiverse page:

If you are not sure what Moka pot is, here is the wikipedia page:

Aug 27, 2017

DIY Open Source 3D Printable Submersible Glider Drone

Alex Williams developed and built this sophisticated open source submersible glider drone. 3D printed elements are the main components.

Project description:

There has been a breakthrough with low cost autonomous drones and as this capability has matured a wide range of hobby and commercial applications have developed. There are no affordable extended duration underwater exploration platforms and this project aims to address this need. 
Utilising commodity hardware, 3D printed parts and an open-source autopilot, I aim to produce a low cost and versatile underwater glider capable of extended missions of up to weeks at a time. I hope that by having this platform available, it would reduce the cost of underwater projects for all, from hobbyists, amateur scientists to seafood farmers

Video of mechanical motion, buoyancy drive, and central mass movement assembly:

Underwater testing of the glider in a pond:

Project page with all the details:

Building and Flying 3D Printable OpenRC Quadcopter

Anton from Sweden documented his process of building and flying a modified version OpenRC beta quadcopter.

Anton's YT channel:

Vitaprint 3D Bioprinter by IRNAS from Slovenia

IRNAS Institute from Slovenia is developing some serious bioprinting open source machines. Respect.

Project description:
VITAPRINT is an open source 3D bioprinting project developed by our Symbiolab. It is a platform of open 3D bioprinting, including open hardware, methods and demo files, which serves as a basis for our collaborations with researchers from science and industry. We act as the key technology partner and help them apply the convenience of 3D biofabrication technology in their specific application and facilitate the transition of ideas into operational devices and procedures.

Vitaprint homepage:

Aug 9, 2017

Hack the Electronics of Monoprice Select Mini 3D Printer

Robin Reiter wanted to develop his own custom UI for Monoprice Select Mini so he needed to reverse engineer the electronics and software. He documented the entire process in detail and made an interesting video about it. it's a must-see if you are interested in the internal working of 3d printer electronics and driver software.

Check out Robin's YouTube channel:

All the code is available on the GitHub:

DIY 3D Printable Kinetic Charger Power Bank

Here is a very useful project you can make on your 3d printer with some electronic components. It's a fully functional induction powered charger with battery power bank. It charges the battery when you move it.
All structural components are 3d printed and you will need some magnets, copper coils, battery and an electronic controller.

Main components:

  1. The Inductor consists of a 9-magnetic Halbach array and three coils.
  2. PCB contains an inductor 200mA step-up-converter, a battery charger, and a battery step-up converter 5V 2A output.
  3. The lithium-polymer battery with 2800 mAh capacity.
  4. The case consists 4 parts and is made with 3D printer.

The designer, TanyaAkinora from Ukraine named it "Elveet".

Video presentation:

Instructables page with the construction guide and all the files:

Thingiverse page:

Charge schematics:

Aug 8, 2017

Printrbot Printrbelt Working

Printrbot Printrbelt is making some nice progress. It is a continuous conveyer belt 3d printer that can print some long objects. New videos and features are released and here is a short overview.

Here is a 6 foot long sword:

Here is Wiliam Steele from Polar3D showing how the software control is implemented on Printrbelt:

Printrbelt producing many smaller objects (gliders) in a series:

Aug 7, 2017

Prusa New Water Soluble Supports

Slic3r Prusa Edition in the latest version 1.36.2 comes with improved printing with water soluble supports. On Prusa i3 MK2 MultiMaterial you now have three ways to print with support. Basic supports from the same material as on regular MK2/MK2S, water soluble supports everywhere and water soluble only on the interface layers.

Here is the video presentation:

With this features, Prusa is getting more powerful and competitive even when compared with much more expensive machines.

Prusa post with detailed information:

DIY 3D Printable Hot Glue Pen

TanyaAkinora developed a fully functional DIY hot glue pen that is powered by a simple electric motor.

Detailed construction guide and all the files:

Jul 30, 2017

Electric Skateboard from Giant 3D Printed Toy Bricks

James Bruton made an functional electric skateboard made from giant 3d printed Lego bricks.

Here are the two project videos:

Project homepage

Jul 29, 2017

Future Fabrication at MIT's Center for Bits and Atoms

If you are technology and science nerd you have to see this tour of MIT's Center for Bits and Atoms.

This is the place where some amazing tech is being developed for real world application purposes.
You will see some advanced gene editing, micron level 3d imaging, and manipulation, micron level laser cutters, molecular assemblers and nano machines.  

Part 1

Part 2

Some very very cool stuff kids!!!

MIT Center for Bits and Atoms homepage:


First look at Cloud Based Fusion 360

Many of you use Fusion 360 as main design application. Adafruit team shows us the first view at browser based Fusion 360 system. Personally, I'm more fan of the open source software and I don't like to depend on a big corporation.

Link where you can test it yourself:

Best Slicers for 2017 by Maker's Muse

Angus gives us his overview of the best slicing applications for 2017.


Slic3r Prusa Edition

CURA 2.6.x


Jul 28, 2017

SAM Robotic Brick Layer

We have seen extrusion based construction 3D printers that build with cement paste layers. SAM is a robotic bricklayer that uses standard masonry bricks. It can also be considered as a type of 3D printer since it is using additive manufacturing guided by a computer.
Despite some light statements in the video, a construction worker is probably not a job position with bright future.
Sure, SAM needs human assistance now, but it is highly likely it will be fully autonomous in the future. The two workers that assist it now probably displace ten workers because of the efficiency.

Video description:
Meet the Semi-Automated Mason or SAM, a robot that is so good at building walls it could take over the construction industry. Created by New York-based company Construction Robotics, the brick-laying robot promises to both increase productivity while reducing overall labor costs.
While the efficiency on construction sites has been stagnant in the last 20 to 30 years, manufacturing efficiency has increased significantly due to robotics and technology. Construction Robotics created SAM to solve that problem. SAM requires a human partner to smooth over the works, but the heavy lifting is left to the bot.
The robot can lay bricks at least three times faster than humans – and it never gets tired or makes mistakes. VICE News went to a construction site in Virginia to see SAM at work.



DIY Bench Clamp Made On a 3D Printer

Chuck designed and made this very useful bench clamp on his 3d printer. It uses some M6 metal bolts and nuts but it can easily be converted to other sizes.

It goes through a hole in a workbench and holds objects safely in place so you can work on them.

Project page:

3D Printing Is Activity I Really Enjoy


I'm back after a short vacation. Hi guys I missed you.

Jul 7, 2017

3D Printing Parts for Cryptocurrency Mining Rig

Cryptocurrency mining is booming again with Ethereum currently being one of the most mined coins. In many countries graphics cards (GPUs) used for the process are hard to find or are much more expensive. For mining purposes, several cards are mounted on a single motherboard with a riser connector and attached to an open external rig for more space to get better cooling air flow.
Most mining rigs are self-built by the operators who always want to get the best price to quality ratio.

Here are a few very practical 3D printable DIY modules you can make yourself and use in your setup.

Here is a somewhat typical mining rig but all the connections of metal profiles and structural elements (red and black plastic) were 3d printed:

Youmagine project page with all the instructions and files:

If you don't want to keep your GPUs on a riser connected to a rigid frame to get more space or flexible arrangements for better cooling, you can use DIY 3d printed card holders.

MMF project page with all the files:

Here is a different type of vertical GPU holder with focused ventilation opening:

Thingiverse page:

Using 3d printing to build your hashing beast is a great way to ensure spare and replacement parts and it gives you much more customization options. You can also get various type of fan holders, air flow focusers, PC component holders, and many other components.

Jul 6, 2017


Hangprinter is an open sourced RepRap machine that uses walls and other surfaces as a frame. It literally hangs and prints. It makes a build volume an obsolete concept.

Hangprinter presentation:

Here it is a building tall tower:

Project pages:

3D Printable Mortise and Tenon Jig for your Dremel

If you need a cheap DIY jig for mortise and tenon making for your woodworking projects here is a simple 3d printable version that uses a Dremel tool for cutting out the wood.
It was developed by Crafted3D since he needed a cheaper alternative for a 1000USD standard router.

There are a few non-printable parts like a metal clamp, but this is a great low-cost shop tool. You could also design different templates for the shape of your tenon/mortise parts.

Instructables page with all the files:

Jul 5, 2017

3D Printed Boat Propeller by Jaimie Mantzel

Jaimie Mantzel is living on an island in Panama and he is building his own little paradise with his family. He has a lot of interesting projects from solar boat making to dome house building. He documents most of his life on YouTube, his channel is well worth following.

He uses DIY solar powered boats and he makes self-made 3d printed propellers for them.

Modular props with replaceable modules:

Here is the real test:

PDF for boat propeller design:

MAKEzine article about his life and many cool island projects:

Find Jaimie:

Prop in the water

Jul 4, 2017

Big Benchy RC Boat

You like making the 3DBenchy? Now you will like it even more with this project! Kim developed a larger version that can float and has an RC control for a small electric motor. It is 3d printed from several modules and held together with ABS-juice which also makes it watertight.

Video with build log and RC Benchy in action:

Here is the full construction guide:

Thingiverse page:

Very Loud DIY Filament Alarm

Donald Papp developed a simple but loud alarm, "Mister Screamer", that is hanging from your filament and if the filament runs out it triggers a loud alarm.

Key features:

  • If filament is present, nothing happens.
  • If filament runs out, scream your fool head off to alert a nearby operator.
  • Enclosure can be 3D printed
  • Self-contained (no external power or signals)
  • Requires no modifications to the 3D printer to be monitored
  • Electrically simple, and using a minimum of easy to source parts
  • Long battery life, low power usage
  • Easy to turn off when responding to an alarm

Source with the build guide:

All the files can be found at:

3D Printed Molds for Concrete Frame Canoe

Project description:
A research team from ETH Zurich used 3D-printed moulds to make the skeletal framework for this all-concrete boat, which won first prize for design innovation at the Concrete Canoe Regatta.
The boat race takes place every other year on the Rhine river in Cologne, Germany. It challenges participants to create the lightest and fastest vessel, and race it 200 metres without sinking. The competition allows no other material than concrete to be used.
For their SkelETHon canoe, the team from ETH Zurich relied on research that allowed them to fabricate large-scale concrete building components, casting concrete in any shape using 3D-printed moulds.
"With 3D printing we have an almost unlimited geometrical freedom for making formworks, which was not available to concrete so far," said the team's Andrei Jipa. "Undercuts, microstructures, high-resolution details are now possible."
The moulds are made from recyclable plastic, and allowed the team to cast slender "bones" – some of which measured just 15 millimetres in diameter – from steel fibre-reinforced concrete.

Source post with more information:

Jul 3, 2017

ZeroBot is a 3D printable FPV robot based on Raspberry Pi Zero

ZeroBot is a cool little 3d printable robot that is cheap and easy to make. Great for educational robotic projects. You can control it via the smartphone interface and all the software is available as SD card image. I'm making this!!!

Project description:
ZeroBot is a Raspberry Pi Zero W based robot. It can be controlled using any computer or smartphone via a web browser. The integrated camera module makes for a low latency video stream. In addition, the Raspberry Pi acts as a Wifi access point, so no router is required. The parts for the hull as well as the wheels can easily be printed on any regular 3D printer. 
Some of the key features are:
  • Compact CAD design with 3D printed components
  • Analog control via a joystick (and multitouch)
  • Simple battery solution using only a standard power bank
  • Low latency streaming (~0.3s)
  • Easy and cheap to build using widely available components

Thingiverse page: page:

Fully 3D Printed Water Pump by Mikes Inventions

Mike developed and 3d printed a fully working DC motor powered centrifugal water pump.
The sealant is the key :-)

Project homepage:

STL link:

Applying sealant to the contact surfaces

3D Printed Small Internal Combustion Engine from Romania

Researchers from Romania 3d printed a small working two-stroke engine on a professional metal 3d printer.

Project description:
Romanian Valentin Stamate, a researcher at the Transilvania University in Brasov, presented a 3D printed two-stroke airplane engine prototype. It cost some EUR 20,000 to manufacture and the expense was undertaken by the Brasov University.
The engine is a 10 cubic centimeters one, with 10,000 rotations per minute. Most of the engine parts were produced by SLM and SLS-type 3D printers out of steel, aluminum, and steel and bronze powders. The only parts that were not 3D printed were the propeller, which is made of wood, the cone and its fastening system, the supporting bearings, the screws, the nuts and the spark. The engine is fueled by a mix of methanol and oil.

Now, I know what you are thinking: interesting project but 20 thousand euro is a lot of money for a small engine. Any you are right.
The first thing that came to my mind was my lawn mover broke a few days ago, and since I live in Croatia the replacement part was hard to find and too expensive for my taste. There are MANY small engines in the world and with right investment and economics of scale, this is a very large market. Just the replacement part market is huge with thousands of different engine models with hundreds of parts each.

Now go and make it happen.


Jun 27, 2017

My First Impressions With Using ViaCAD

I had some time to play around with ViaCAD and it looks really interesting. I've downloaded the 14-day trial version and used a few simple daily tasks to see how it performs.

First steps in the program interface are very easy and you are greeted with a simple video tutorial on how to create a 3D goblet from 2D drawing in 60 seconds:

From the beginning, I wanted to focus on 3D printing tools which are a part of this CADs features.

The toolbar with 3D Printing tools can be activated in the "Window" menu.

The interface is fast and fluid.

You can define your printer settings from a list of the pre-defined machine or set it manually:

To see how other functions work, I imported the Voronoi "Broken benchy" by T-E-C from Thingiverse. It is a more complicated and harder version of the standard Benchy.

You can check the printability of your model with "3D Print Check" tool. Here is the output screen with some of the errors found, with several being my mistakes of not properly aligning the object or setting the parameters correctly (like print volume).
Very useful!

"Surface normals" tool shows, you guessed it, surface normals :-)

There are tools to show overhangs and wall thickness.

"Slices" tools will show animated slices base on several parameters, they can be saved into several formats. This is not a slicer which generates g-code for printing.

"Support structures" tool enables you to create support pieces and attach them with a mouse click.

With the "Position" tool you can place the object anywhere in selected print volume coordinate manually or with the automatic positions like "Center".

These basic tools were easy to use at this level, time will show how they perform in everyday work during a longer period. For now, I'm satisfied with this CAD software and will continue to us it.

You can get ViaCAD here and test it yourself and download a trial version from PunchCAD homepage:

There are additional 3D Printing "power packs" for ViaCAD with 70+ 3d printing tools, you can see them here:

Punch! PowerPack v10

Here is a video demo:

Maybe I'll get them also in the future. The pack seems to have many tools in one place instead of using multiple apps and sites.

In next post, I'll describe some of my experiences with actual design and learning curve.

Large Arcs Made with TrussFab 3D Printed Hubs

To learn more about TrussFab go to:

Jun 24, 2017

Printrbot Printrbelt

Printrbot just teased their Printrbelt 3D printer with the heated conveyor belt print surface or "Infinite Z" as they described it.  The belt is a steel belt covered in Kapton with adjustable bed height and tension.
It is a direct competitor to BlackBelt 3D printer (which has a bigger print surface) and knowing Printrbot, it should be low cost and open source.

Brook responded in a Tweet:
Yes, Printrbelt will be open source & affordable. I'll do larger sizes. Already have bits designed for 12"x12" window, but this first.
So we can expect larger models in the future.

Short teaser:

More detailed presentation by Brook:

Brook writes:
The Printrbot Printrbelt allows for very long prints, multiple copies of one print, or a whole project of files to be printed in one shot. It is a beta, but too fun to keep to ourselves.
We are working with Polar3D, who has already hacked a printer like this onto an existing printer frame. They are working on the firmware magic in a cloud service to make this mind-bending twist on 3d printing easy for anyone. This will be a neat partnership that takes an important step forward in desktop manufacturing.
Stay tuned for more on this wild 3d printer that brings a new superpower to your desktop at an affordable price.

Looks like we will see much more conveyor belt 3d printers coming up! Competition is great.

Update (02.07.2017.):

Here are videos of Printrbelt working.

Jun 20, 2017

Maslow $350 Open Source CNC Cutting Machine

Maslow CNC is a novel approach to the cutting of large material sheets. It is a hanging or suspended CNC router.
It is open sourced and it comes at $350 price point.

Tech specs:
  • Work Space: 4' X 8' 
  • Encoder Resolution: 8148 steps/rev
  • Repeatability: +- 1/64th inch (.4 mm) or better
  • Max feed rate 48 inches/minute
  • AC Voltage: 110-250 volts
  • DC Voltage: 12 volts
  • Connection: USB
  • OS for Software: Mac, Windows, Linux
  • Size: H: 6' 8" W: 10' D: 1' 7"

Here is the design overview:

Video showing Maslow cutting out an OpenDesk chair:

On Tested show:

Maslow CNC homepage:

Jun 19, 2017

Desktop Metal 3D Printing with Microwave Enhanced Sintering

Here is another revolutionary step forward in 3D printing: the desktop metal 3d printer. It deposits metal "paste" made from metal powder with a polymer binder in a similar way as any common FDM machine and the parts are then sintered in a microwave enhanced furnace chamber.
The price is comparable to higher-end professional FDM machine from a few years ago. They also sell production cell that has much higher capacity for more demanding production facilities.

Tech specs:

  •  Build volume: 12 in x 8 in x 8 in (305 mm x 205 mm x 205 mm)
  •  Materials:  Steel, Titanium, Aluminum, Copper and other undisclosed materials
  •  Layer height: 50 μm (minimum)
  •  Dimensions: 60 in x 49 in x 30 in (1500 mm x 1250 mm x 750 mm)
  •  Technology: Microwave Enhanced Sintering
  •  Price: $120,000 for the desktop version, $250,000+ for manufacturing cell production system

Desktop Metal presentation video:

Here is a much more in-depth video by GoEngineer with many details about the machines, materials, and the process:

Company homepage:

Jun 18, 2017

New DIY CO2 Laser Cutter Project

Here is a new DIY CO2 laser cutter project from Instructables. It was developed by Michiel Deschout and uses relatively available materials and parts like 3030 aluminum T-slot profiles, Arduino and some 3d printed parts. The total cost was some 1900 Euro.
The presented setup uses 40W laser, but the power could probably be increased.

Very detailed step-by-step build guide with all the files can be found at:

Here is the back side with 3d printed holders for the CO2 laser tube:

The latest fashion trend for all you 3d printing geeks

If you are into 3d printing then this is THE style of jacket you should wear!

Detailed project description:

This jacket has 40 neopixels sewn to the back to display the status of the 40 3D Printers in Duke’s Innovation Co-Lab Studio. Each light corresponds to one printer and is either blue (in use), green (available), or red (offline) to show the real-time status of the printer. The printer status is retrieved via Duke’s Innovation Co-Lab’s 3D printer status API, documented here:

Instructables page with all the steps and code:

3D Printable Parametric Slew Bearings

Christoph Laimer published  another very useful project. He developed a fully 3D printable and working parametric slew bearings. Since they are developed to be sturdy they can be used in many different project where a simpler 3D printed ball bearing would fail.
Since the design is parametric, you can adapt it to fit your needs. One version even has conical bearings.

Project description:
Ball-bearings are very popular for 3d-printing. However they often fail for real applications. Using Fusion 360 I've created a parametric design of a "Crossed Roller Slew Bearing". The result is a pretty accurate and robust bearing. The bearing including the rollers is 3d-printed in separate parts. There are a few screws needed to clamp the two halves of the inner race together.

Here is the full video:

Thingiverse page:

A360 download page:

THERO project

THERO is a privacy project developed by Román Torre and Ángeles Angulo, that uses a Raspberry Pi with TOR routing. By moving the front panel you change your connection to the external Internet and your privacy.
It uses 3d printing to make the full enclosure and mold for the concrete encased version.

Here are two videos showing how the project was developed:


Project homepage (in Spanish):

Jun 11, 2017

PrusaControl - a new software interface from Prusa3D

Prusa released a new software aimed at beginners: the PrusaControl, which is a simplified interface for Slic3r Prusa Edition.

Here is the description from the news release:
PrusaControl is an alternative user interface for Slic3r Prusa Edition.
Slic3r Prusa Edition was the first step with a great success and we are extremely proud when people mention they switched back from S3D. But Slic3r has one problem, it is rather complex and intimidating for new users. We cannot do much about this, it is its nature. And that is why PrusaControl was born. It is parallel to Slic3r PE for newcomers to 3D printing, we distil the settings down for the user and put our knowledge to the backend to get the same results. The main goal is to open an object and hit print. PrusaControl is simple, novice friendly and smart.

PrusaControl home page:

Source news article:

Jun 5, 2017

Formlabs Fuse 1 Desktop SLS 3D Printer

Formlabs just released their Fuse 1 3D printer which is a desktop selective laser sintering machine priced at 9,999 USD. It has a 165 x 165 x 320 mm build volume and uses nylon powder.

This is a small revolution on the market and a big step forward in 3D printing availability and affordability!!! Laser sintering machines used to cost in hundreds of thousands and were very large. This will push the competition to respond and lower the prices even more in the future.

Fuse 1 introduction video:

Here is a different promotional "The Human Touch" video:

Fuse 1 homepage:

Here you can see the Fuse 1 size on a table next to a Form 2 SLA machine:

I wonder what will the price of the powder material be? Will it be recyclable and reusable? Will it come in proprietary cartridges with chip control unit?



Here is a much more detailed review by Tested. It shows how the Fuse 1 works and accompanying equipment like recovery station and material mixer. The material is recyclable and the mix of new and used material is determined by the user to get different print qualities.
The material is gray to absorb more energy from 10 watts fiber laser.

ViaCAD by Punch!CAD

I'm always on a search for the new and interesting software tools and when I received a tweet from Punch!CAD about their ViaCAD product I decided to take a look.

ViaCAD looks like an easy to use CAD that has an acceptable learning curve and feature set. You can start from the easy models and move into more complex stuff as you learn. Since it has support for many file formats I was able to open and edit things from various sources. The community behind it and support/tutorials available helped me find answers quickly.

The price seems very affordable and there are no additional fees or vendor lock-in features. It runs both on Windows and Mac machines.

ViaCAD has some powerful 3D printing features and tools:

  • 3D Print Check: This tool checks a part for print viability, displaying warnings or errors to the user.
  • Surface Normals Check: Facet normals define the inside and outside areas of a part. If facet normals are pointing the wrong way, the 3D printer may have problems creating the part. If you have a normals issue, there are several commands that can help you fix this problem.
  • Overhang Analysis: The Overhang Analysis tool provides a means to visually inspect modeling areas that may require structural support for 3D printing. Meshes, surfaces, and solids facets normals are compared to the work plane direction. Angles that are less or equal to 45 degrees are highlighted as red.
  • Wall Thickness: The Wall Thickness Analysis tool provides a means to visually inspect modeling areas that may be too thin for 3D printing. Meshes, surfaces, and solids facets are examined using ray intersections. 
  • Preview Slices: The Preview Slices tool provides a user interface to slice models given a direction and thickness. The dialog box allows for animation through the slices and single stepping. One use of the Preview Slice tool is to verify a part has closed, non-overlapping sections, a requirement for 3D printing. The Save Slices option provides several options to save slices to DXF, STL or adds the results directly into your drawing.
  • Auto Position: The Auto Position tool translates the model to the positive x, y coordinate system at z=0.
  • Support Structure: Manually adds geometry to support material as it is created by the 3D printer. Support structures controls, include Attach Radius, Midpoint Radius, Base Radius, Base Thickness and Drag base and midpoints to modify structure location.
  • Show Printer Volume: Toggles the boundary of the default 3D Printer. The volume is defined within the Printer Definitions dialog box.
  • Printer Definitions: Sets key parameters of the 3D printer, including length, width, and height of the volume accessible by the printer. The parameters in the Printer Definitions dialog box are used for commands such as 3D Print Check and Auto Position.

Here is the ViaCAD presentation video:

For much more information go and check out the company website:

In the future, I'm going to explore ViaCAd further and see if it can bring a CAD noob like myself on to the next skill level.

Jun 4, 2017

Aluminum Profiles DIY 3D Printer by Thomas Workshop

I always like to see new 3D printer designs and builds by different people. Recently I found this larger volume (40cm3) machine by "Thomas Workshop" on Instructables. It is fully made from common aluminum profiles and Thomas did put some effort to document and present his work process.
Test prints look good and the frame seems sturdy.

Here is the final video from three part series showing electronics and printing:

Here is the detailed step-by-step build guide with videos, documentation, and picture construction log:

Make a DIY Waterjet Cutter From a Cheap Pressure Cleaner

In my youth, I used to work at a local car wash place. If you traveled trough Balkans you probably saw many of them, and they all use handheld pressure washers. When I saw this video it reminded me of that time and I thought you guys would enjoy and find something useful in this project.

Ben Krasnow used a very cheap pressure washer and attached a DIY abrasive sand container combined with AccuStream professional cutter head to make a low-cost DIY waterjet cutter.
It can cut thin aluminum, wood, and plastics. it looks like the cuts are very precise and controllable. In water only mode it cuts trough soft materials like foam.

Here is the full video with all the details.

Next step would probably be to mount this cutter on a CNC gantry and turn it into a fully computer controlled machine.
Since there are much more powerful pressure washers, like the Karchers I used, this could be made into a more capable device.
With right settings, it could potentially cut plastic 3d printed parts or use it as a sand blasting device for surface finishing.

Applied Science YouTube channel:

Ben's blog:

Jun 3, 2017

Steam Powered 3D Printed Mechanical Computer

Here is something you don't see every day: a steam-powered mechanical computer with nylon 3d printed parts.
It is a version of a Babbage Engine from the 19th century.

Project description:
A simplified version of Charles Babbage's Difference Engine no. 2 has been constructed by Piers Plummer as part of a project with the Computer Science Department at Royal Holloway University of London, funded by The Leverhulme Foundation. In this video, it is performing calculations while being powered by steam!

I just love the looks of it, with all the pipes, valves, and a steam boiler! Even a hand crank!


May 30, 2017

3D Printable Low Cost Servo Based RobotQuad

If you have some extra cheap servos and an Arduino you can use them to make this open source quadruped RobotQuad. It was developed by Regis Hsu and as open source project and its design is updated frequently. It should be a very affordable thing to build as all the servos needed will cost some 20 USD.
In the linked Instructable there are also possibilities to make a remote control unit and IR obstacle detection.

Here is the version 3.0 whit some dance music:

Detailed build instructions can be found at:

Hari Wiguna made a video about his build:

I really like the DIY aesthetics of this robot:

May 29, 2017

Happy 9th birthday RepRap!!!

First RepRap replication happened on this date 9 years ago!!! Happy birthday RepRaps!!! It has been amazing nine years...

Source by RepRapLtd

May 28, 2017

3D Printed DIY Leather Stamps

Black Beard Projects made a video where he shows how he designs leather stamps in Fusion 360 and how he uses them to make patterns with a hand press. With this method, you can make any number of highly custom stamps you need without buying them or waiting for delivery.
It is another great example how 3d printing can be used in even more traditional handcrafts.

Here is the creator's FB page:

Here is the close-up of the stamp making a pattern on a hand-made leather knife sheet

May 22, 2017

Aleph Objects and IC3D Develop First Open Source Filament

Aleph Objects, makers of the LulzBot brand of desktop 3D printers and parts announced a partnership with IC3D to develop the first open source filament. The main goal is to democratize manufacturing.
The filament is Open Source Hardware Association (OSHW) certified.

Video of the talk at the 2017 Midwest RepRap festival:

GitHub repository with filament specifications and other materials:

Lulzbot is also selling the filament at 35USD per 1kg spool:

Source news release:

Cytosurge FluidFM µ3Dprinter is world’s first sub-micron metal 3D printer

Cytosurge AG, based in Zurich Switzerland, presents their revolutionary FluidFM µ3Dprinter which is world’s first 3D sub-micron direct metal printing machine.
This 3D printer could be used as an advanced tool for development of many new scientific and engineering applications from biology to nanorobotics.
It is one of the first steps towards practical manufacturing of parts for nanobots floating in your body to repair the damaged cells.

From the video description:
At the forefront of nanotechnology, additive manufacturing, life sciences and single cell biology, Cytosurge FluidFM µ3Dprinter is the world’s first 3D printer capable of delivering sub-micron resolution in direct metal printing, while offering scalability and good prospects in both production cost and speed.
The FluidFM technology opens a new world for metal object manufacturing and enables research opportunities in fields such as microelectronics, semiconductors, surface modification, microbots, sensors, material science and many other fields. Virtually any design can be offered to the system, including overhanging structures with 90 degree angles, without support structures or post processing steps.
High-precision surface modification processes can also be executed by printing ultra-thin or structured objects and by depositing multiple metals at the target surface. With the FluidFM µ3Dprinter various metals like Cu, Ag, Au, Pt can be printed.
The printing of other metals (Sn, Cd, Cr, Ni etc.) and various alloys are under investigation.

Company homepage:

May 21, 2017

TriDInnov 3D Prints Electronic Components on Plastic Surfaces

Looks like TriDInnov from France has a working technology that prints conductive electronics on plastic surfaces. 

Technology description:
Startup company TriDInnov provides additive metallization for plastic and composite materials electronic packaging, is linked through a closed partnership with equipment manufacturer Kelenn Technology, launching the new Kelenn Technology DMD 100, an off-contact digital dispenser which deposits the TDI thick film formulation EOPROM (primer formulation for metallization process) showcasing their prototype circuits which have been manufactured with the DMD 100, depositing their EOPROM thick film formulation on molded device.
TriDInnov's technology brings to the electronic packaging market a new manufacturing process which repositions the MID towards new business areas such as to add value to composite materials especially in the automotive area. They are to invest in a technology platform in order to manufacture MID prototypes circuits for their customers in order to push their technology acceptance in the marketplace.