MakerBot launches new dual-material MK7 extruder

Print in multiple colours or materials on a hobbyist 3D printer

Tiny MK7 preview from NYTimes diagram

MakerBot Industries is set to launch a new dual-material extruder today, according to co-founder Bre Pettis.

Except for some experimental work, hobbyist 3D printing has traditionally been limited to a single extruder. That has meant printing in only one colour or material at a time. But with the launch of the MK7 extruder, users will be able to print with two colours or materials in a single object.

Why multiple materials? (more…)

MakerBot project: Z-axis extender kit

Push your MakerBot Cupcake to the limit

Finished upgrade

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about upgrades for the MakerBot that you can print using the MakerBot. My favourite upgrade of the bunch, Zydac’s Z-axis extender kit, is now complete on my own MakerBot so it’s time to show how it’s done.

Printing the parts

These are the parts that you’ll need to print:

  • – 4 x Z-Extender Base75.stl
  • – 4 x Z Extension FBUpper.stl
  • – 4 x Z Extension FBLower.stl
  • – 4 x Z Extension SideLower.stl
  • – 2 x Z Extension SideUpperR.stl
  • – 2 x Z Extension SideUpperL.stl

Upgrade kit parts

Printable upgrades for your MakerBot

Enhancing a 3D printer using a 3D printer

Z-axis extender 1

One of the things I like best about 3D printers is the meta sort of hijinks that you can get up to with them. Printing parts for other 3D printers, printing a full MakerBot chassis, and especially printing upgrades for the actual device that you’re sitting at.

Z-axis adjuster knob by Stefan

This printed part makes manual adjustment of the Z-stage easier. There are other versions that use a crank design but with all of the cables and filament hanging around at the top of my MakerBot I prefer this design. Object source: (more…)

Modifying a Makerbot for PCB milling

Makerbot and Dremel, unite!

Makerbot owner Keith has been chronicling his efforts to mill PCB boards with a Makerbot on his blog (thanks Keith!). He’s using a Dremel mounted in the place of the print head. The basic idea works since a Makerbot is already designed to control movement along the x- and y-axes, but PCB boards put up more of a fight than heated plastic filament.

You can read more about his first effort, the improved mount, and the improved build platform on his blog.

Via Makerbot Industries

Makerbot timelapse

Over eight hours of Makerbotting compressed into a few minutes.

I attended the modeLab Interactive Parametrics seminar a month or so ago (check out our previous post on it here) and had the chance to film some Makerbots hard at work. I’ve got to thank Bre Pettis for providing Makerbot troubleshooting, Marius Watz for teaching, modeLab for hosting, and Kidd Video for the music.

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MakerBot Welcomes Marius Watz as First Artist-In-Residence

en plein share

Earlier this month, MakerBot announced Marius Watz as their first artist-in-residence.

Watz is well known for his visualizations of software processes, usually in the form of colorful geometric abstractions for print imagery or screen based media.

In the past few years, Watz has explored the potential of digital fabrication in rendering computational patterns, most notably in his laser cut plywood series based on Processing.

His residency at MakerBot will allow him to continue this path toward a more sculptural approach.

With unlimited plastic and 2 months access to the BotFarm, Watz plans to produce models for his upcoming exhibition in Oslo, release an open source Processing library for 3D modeling, and upload a series of models to Thingiverse.


MakerBot Printable Transistors

Is there anything the MakerBot can’t do?

The Unicorn Pen Plotter is a versatile addition for anyone’s MakerBot.
Mr.Kim and John Sarik saw the magic in the Unicorn, and when they put their heads together some interesting developments soon emerged.

Presented at Botacon 0 was a work-in-progress demonstration of their project where transistors are being plotted using sub-micron silver inks.

I think we have a working process in hand. Now it is only a matter of engineering to refine it.

Does this mean we are one step closer to a self-replicating robot revolution? Hopefully the Botacon motto of Robots for a better future will still hold firm.

Kim and Sarik’s remarkable development is paving the way for DIY enthusiasts to print out their own circuitry and hardware for electronic devices. The maker movement sure looks to be in for quite a ride as more people explore the potential of these technologies.

You too can be a part of building the future now with a MakerBot from Ponoko.

Via Thingiverse

Step by Step Guide to Building a MakerBot CupCake CNC 3D Printer

in-depth 13 part guide from Make:

Marc de Vinck  just wrapped up an excellent and exhaustive step-by-step guide to building a MakerBot CupCake CNC. His 13 part article for Make: has been in the works for nearly a year, and the guide was finally finished today.

The documentary starts off with a little bit of the author’s background in CNC machining and then takes you through every step of putting together a fully functional CupCake CNC — from opening the box on the kitchen floor…

“The first thing I found was a nice letter from the MakerBot team and a couple of postcards. I’m going to keep these filed away in a safe place. Maybe one day I’ll be on the Antiques Roadshow and the host will let out a delighted *gasp* when I whip out my original, signed MakerBot Industries letter. Hey, you never know?!”

…to 3D printing a classic whistle in ABS plastic.

“Feeling confident, I proceeded to download the infamous whistle by Zaggo STL file. I fired up the printer, and in a few minutes, I had a whistle! Amazing!”

If you’ve been waiting for the right time to try out a CupCake for yourself, now would be that time. Not only do you have Vinck’s guide to walk you through the entire process, but the CupCake Starter Kit is now on sale for $649.

And don’t forget, all the files for the body of the printer are available for free in MakerBot’s Ponoko showroom and will cost you under $250 to cut with Ponoko. Save even more money by sourcing the electronics from the new hardware additions to our materials catalog.

via Make: & Marc de Vinck (t)

Makerbot Releases a New 3D Printer

Drumroll please . . .

Makerbot has just announced the release of their new and improved 3D printer, the Thing-O-Matic. This printer will replace the CupCake as their flagship product (you can get the CupCake at a discount until they run out). The Thing-O-Matic claims to be fully automatic, extremely reliable, and easier to use with higher quality prints. Sounds pretty impressive!

From reading the press release on their blog, it looks like this printer is designed to need little to no intervention by the user once it’s set up. It’s still sold as a kit like all the Makerbots have been, but once assembled it appears to be plug-and-play. This, along with improved printing resolution, puts it a little bit closer to printers like the UP! 3D printer we recently reviewed, while staying a whole lot cheaper.

CLICK HERE for the Makerbot blog post with all the details.
CLICK HERE to purchase the Thing-O-Matic for $1,225.

Makerbot 3D Printer on Sale!

The best price ever for a Cupcake 3D printer from Makerbot.

Yesterday Makerbot Industries announced a sale on all of their CupCake 3D printers, because of the upcoming release of a new 3D printer to replace the CupCake. This is a great opportunity to get an excellent 3D printer at bargain basement prices. Of course, if you absolutely must have the best of the best, then you may want to wait for the release of the new printer. Still, it’s hard to argue with this deal. They’re even including some major upgrades with the Ultimate package.

Read more about this great offer after the jump!