Archive for April 5th, 2012

This New Replicator Owner Is Off And Running

This artist and architect, Matt Compeau, kinda made my day. I was already getting a kick out of his post a couple days ago that detailed the unboxing of his brand new MakerBot Replicator. Something about these pictures — perhaps it’s how many of them there are — really makes his enthusiasm pop off the screen. What a delight.

And then yesterday Matt had to go and print some really beautiful designs. Kapow! Look at this thing. It has such movement, but the way it sits on the platform makes me think of a sea anemone rooted on the ocean floor.


If these are his first prints, I wonder what’s to follow. Find more about Matt’s work here, and if you have any other favorite blogs (like yours!), share it in the comments.

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Tinkercad Chess Set Design Contest: We Have A Winner!

This past Monday was the close of another very successful design challenge, for which MakerBot collaborated with Tinkercad to find the best original chess set that could be printed on a 3D printer. As a reward, the runners-up will receive printed versions of their designs, while the big winner gets a MakerBot Replicator!

Briefly, the guidance was as follows:

  • Wow us
  • Make it 3D printable
  • Make it kid and granny friendly


We’re going to echo the sentiment of our Tinkercad pals: this was a tough call! The ingenuity shown by the entrants was impressive and surprising. And plentiful! All together, in the two short weeks that the contest ran, there were over 180 submissions. Wowza.

The sets ranged from beautiful modified versions of classic piece designs to highly abstract creations, with several simple and elegant ideas in between. You can go find your own favorites on our Pinterest board dedicated to these chess sets, but here are the winners as announced on Tinkercad’s blog!


Honorable Mentions

Fifth Runner Up

Word Play Chess by gecgooden

Word Play Chess by gecgooden


Fourth Runner Up

Modern Chess by Frederic

Modern Chess by Frederic


Third Runner Up

Evolution of Chess by dutchmogul

Evolution of Chess by dutchmogul


Second Runner Up

Amsterdam House Chess by MakeALot

Amsterdam House Chess by MakeALot


First Runner-Up

Tiki Chess by Whystler

Tiki Chess by Whystler


Grand Prize Winner

Action Chess by cymon

Not only are the pieces in this set identifiable yet original, they combine into an impressive conquering giant. Cymon played with the fittings to get them right, and the result is phenomenal. We can’t wait to ship him his new MakerBot Replicator! You can see more of cymon’s inspiring design work on his Thingiverse page. But for now, just feast your eyes on this chess set, and print a couple for yourself!

Action Chess by cymon


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One Step Closer to Hoverboards

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Jetpacks are nice and all… but what I really want is one of those hoverboards promised by Back to the Future II.

Thingiverse citizen and education superstar Chris Connors has created and shared a printable Mendocino Motor on Thingiverse.  A Mendocino Motor is a “solar-powered magnetically-levitated electric motor.”  Even though a Mendocino Motor is more of a curiosity than a useable motor you can put to work, it’s certainly a step in the right direction.

And, with a few solar cells, bits of wire, some magnets, and some quick printing plastic parts, you can have your very own hover motor.

Error - could not find Thing 17860.


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3D Printing – Inception Badge

Printable 3D Skill Badge by Belfry

Printable 3D Skill Badge by Belfry

Sometimes the coolest things on Thingiverse are the result of challenges between user.  For instance, there’s the Printable 3D Skill Badge and the subsequent 3D Badge – Building a 3D Badge by Belfry.  The challenge went like this:

  • Belfry:  Too much time on my hands?… – This is a 75%, a 100%, and a 125% printings. Does this mean my printer is working OK?
  • TheNewHobbyist:  Haha, now it just needs to be re-modeled so it’s a 3D printing badge, printing a 3D printing badge, printing a…
  • Belfry:  Oh NO – why did you have to go and say that?!?!?
Error - could not find Thing 20101.
Error - could not find Thing 20598.
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3D Printed “Soap Bubble” Art

Here’s a nice example of MakerBotted art. These pieces were printed separately, and it looks like they probably needed to fit very precise specifications, so it must have been handy to be able to reprint the pieces when they weren’t quite right.

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April 3rd MUGNY Event Wrap-Up

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Thank you to all of you who joined us for the April 3rd, standing-room-only MUGNY event. Great start to MUGNY’s 2012 season!

MUGNY might be the “flagship” MUG given its proximity to MakerBot HQ, but this particular event was something of a special case. I assembled a heavy-hitter list of MakerBot colleagues to each deliver a short talk on frequently requested topics. Future MUGNY editions will focus on show-and-tell directed by community members, along with a sprinkling of A-list superstar keynotes.1

I am following (cue the TV mad scientist hand-rubbing) a secret plan: the plan to generate a number of great talks and tech demos that can be later transposed into full-out tutorials on to share with our community — so that all of the MUGs can benefit. Those physically able to visit weren’t the only ones attending — despite our same-day notice, we had at least seventy-five visitors via the event’s livestream, chatting with MakerBot blogger Andrew while following the proceedings. And this is just a piece of the MUG-to-MUG exchange that will become possible as more MUGs come online and swap activities with each other. So keep your eyes on this space — I’ll be blogging about these tutorials as we post them. I encourage MUGs to give these tutorials a try at their own events.

Across the planet, dozens and dozens of MUGs have been forming to bring MakerBot Operators together regularly to share prints, models, stories, and (frequently) pizza. Are you on the hunt for fellow MakerBot Operators to meet with in your area? Or maybe you have a group and you’d like to tell us about it? In either case, drop us a message to mug at makerbot dot com and I’ll be happy to follow up with you.

Wanna check out the run down for the night? Click the “read more” link below for the Techniques Swap summary!

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  1. I have lined up some really outstanding contributors for the upcoming season! []
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