Thing-O-Matic 3D Printer


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Sorry!  The Thing-O-Matic is no longer available from MakerBot.  But you can still build one from the designs on Thingiverse!

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Assembly Instructions / User Manual

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Thing-O-Matic Troubleshooting

Look inside a Thing-O-Matic

Specifications and Schematics

Fully Automatic


With the automated build platform it will keep printing and printing.

The automated build platform is a revolution in 3D printing. It allows you to have a print queue; your machine will print objects one after another. This turns your Thing-O-Matic into a little factory that sits on your desktop. Best of all, this is completely automated: you hit print, and the machine does all the work. Want to print 100 butterflies? Easy. Want to print an entire chess set? No problem. Want to start a business selling printed things that you’ve designed? Awesome. Have the bot do all the work while you design new things.

Extremely Reliable

The MakerBot Stepstruder MK7 is our first dedicated 1.75 mm filament extruder. This extruder was designed from scratch, and contains a number of custom manufactured parts. We’ve learned a lot over our past extruder designs, and incorporated a lot of those lessons here: that’s why it’s smaller, lighter, and faster to build. And since it’s designed from the ground up for 1.75 mm filament, it’s light-years ahead of past designs in small-filament reliability.

Higher Quality


The layer alignment is much better which results in nicer prints and higher resolution.

We’ve completely overhauled the drive system to give the optimum positioning accuracy. The entire system has been upgraded to sturdy 3/8″ diameter linear shafting. This is probably overkill, but you can trust that the axes will be sturdy. We’ve also switched to self-aligning, sintered brass bearings. These are very forgiving to DIY assembly and provide a nice, smooth motion on the steel shafts. We’ve completely replaced the Z axis with a stepper driven, cantilevered stage. Guided by two of the linear shafts, this completely eliminates any Z wobble and results in nicely aligned layers. Using a high-angle lead screw, we were able to increase the speed of the Z axis from 150mm/minute to 1,000mm/minute. This means the layer changes are almost completely imperceptible.

Easier to Use


Connect over USB and hit print — the machine will calibrate itself and start printing.

The new electronics have been designed to make the printing experience easier than ever. The Thing-O-Matic connects to your computer via a standard USB cable thanks to a USB chip on the motherboard. We’ve also added full endstop support so that you never need to touch the XYZ axes ever again. When you hit print, the machine will automatically home itself, heat up, and begin printing. All you have to do is sit back and relax while your Thing-O-Matic does all the work. Living in the future is awesome. Oh yeah, and the electronics are all inside, so you don’t have wires dangling everywhere.



The Thing-O-Matic is a derivative of the MakerBot CupCake CNC which was originally designed by MakerBot Industries.

3 Comments so far

  • hewie
    September 6, 2011 at 4:32 pm

    what are the formats that are compatible with this printer?

  • Ethan
    December 29, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    or an overview of the printing software, check out the quick-start:

    Basically, we maintain a freely available open-source program called ReplicatorG ( ) which does the machine control and basic operations (move, resize, etc.) with 3d models.

    This program takes .stl files, which is a standard file format. We recommend Blender and Google Sketchup as free 3d modeling programs, but many commercial programs are great as well.

    Also keep in mind that thousands of free, open-source designs are available at

  • Leonardo
    February 6, 2012 at 12:43 pm

    Me interesa saber el costo con envió, de la impresora, con el formato mas grande a Bogota – Colombia


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