MakerBot Digitizer is almost here

Add a 3D scanner to your workflow

The easiest and fastest way to create your own unique 3D models is about to be released by MakerBot. Eagerly anticipated ever since an early prototype was unveiled in March, the MakerBot Digitizer is just about ready for action. This neat little device will turn almost any (smallish) object you can get your hands on into 3D designs you can share and print.

In an email alert from MakerBot this week, the following info was released that outlines some key features of the Digitizer.

– Simple, yet sophisticated software creates clean, watertight 3D models with just two clicks.
– Get a 3D digital design file in just minutes.
– No design skills, 3D modeling or CAD expertise required to get started.
– Outputs standard 3D design file formats that can be modified and improved in third-party 3D modeling programs, like Autodesk’s free software MeshMixer.
– Easily upload your unique scans directly to Thingiverse.com.

Could the MakerBot Digitizer fill a gap in your creative workflow? Hide the cat, and keep an eye on MakerBot for further updates including pricing and availability.

MakerBot Digitizer via The Next Web

Stratasys acquires MakerBot

$403m in stock takes MakerBot into the big, big league

There are some who say that MakerBot has done more for DIY 3D printing than almost any other company. Likewise, the venerable industry stalwart Stratasys has long held its own in professional circles. So it kind of makes sense that they should team up together.

The two companies have announced a proposed $403 million in stock to merge MakerBot into the Stratasys fold as a subsidiary entity. MakerBot would continue business as usual, with Bre Pettis remaining at the helm. The same goes for Thingiverse.com, MakerBot’s online portal for sharing user-generated 3D design content.

“…Partnering with Stratasys will allow us to supercharge our mission to empower individuals to make things using a MakerBot, and allow us to bring 3D technology to more people. I am excited about the opportunities this combination will bring to our current and future customers.”
– Bre Pettis

If you’re in New York, you can head down to MakerBot’s headquarters in Brooklyn on Thursday, June 20 at 10am for a joint news conference with Stratasys. The rest of us can access the event live at makerbot.com, and an archive will be made available at http://mbot.co/press062013.

Read the full press release from Stratasys here.

via Engadget

MakerBot announces the Replicator 2X experimental 3D printer

The most advanced MakerBot yet.

MakerBot CEO Bre Pettis announced the Replicator 2X 3D printer at the CES technology event. The new printer is equipped with a heated build platform, dual extruders for multiple colors, the ability to print both PLA and ABS, and a 100 micron layer print resolution. It also has a fully enclosed build area with clear plastic windows (that oddly don’t appear to be shown in the above image).

This is arguably their most advanced 3D printer yet. It’s also their most expensive at $2799, clearly reinforcing the transition of MakerBot as a company from inexpensive hobbyist 3D printers to more professional-level machines.

Via Cnet

Ford to put MakerBot Replicators on their engineers’ desks

The blurry line between professional and hobby 3D printing.

Ford intends to equip many of their engineers with new Replicator 3D printers from MakerBot, according to GigaOM. The video shows one of Ford’s engineers explaining how he uses an older MakerBot in his work, so Ford has apparently been using these printers for awhile now.

3D printers have been used by major companies for, quite literally, decades, but only recently have 3D printers become inexpensive enough for individuals to own. What is interesting here is that this shift towards low cost 3D printers is also changing the way that large companies use the technology. Instead of only having a few large, expensive 3D printers for an entire company, Ford has elected to provide their engineers with individual, less expensive printers.

Via Fabbaloo

Replicator 2: a new direction for MakerBot?

The much-lauded maker of 3D printers for amateurs goes pro.

As we mentioned in our recent coverage, MakerBot has just released a brand new 3D printer, the Replicator 2. It boasts a range of new features and upgrades that I won’t repeat here. It also boasts a new $2199 price tag. I doubt anyone will complain about improved print quality and larger build volumes, and, frankly, the new printer looks gorgeous. That being said, this blogger sees the Replicator 2 as a new direction for MakerBot. They have clearly and specifically labeled it “professional-grade,” a first for MakerBot. This is not necessarily a bad direction, but it is a marked change from how they began.
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MakerBot launches Replicator 2 3D printer

The new professional-grade 3D printer from MakerBot.

The people who brought us the Cupcake, the Thing-o-Matic, and the Replicator 3D printer have just released their next creation: the Replicator 2.

In contrast to their earlier printers aimed at hobbyists, MakerBot is describing this new printer as “professional-grade.” This claim is supported by the radically improved print quality, in addition to a slew of other upgrades and tweaks. To compare, the original replicator had a layer height of 270 microns, and the Replicator 2 has a layer height of 100 microns.

Keep reading past the jump for more features, photos, and videos.
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MakerBot Replicator unboxing at Engadget

See what happens when the tech-heads get their hands on some serious DIY hardware…

Over at Engadget, they are no strangers to the world of possibilities that 3D printing has been promising for some time now. Yet much of this knowledge has been academic; sourced from technical expertise and worldly know-how more than down ‘n dirty, roll your sleeves up, gritty personal experience.

That’s all changed thanks to the shiny (well, as shiny as lasercut ply can be) new delivery of a dual-extruder MakerBot Replicator.

Brian Heater has put together one of the most comprehensive first-look reviews of a 3D printer that we’ve ever seen. From the first unveiling through to numerous teething problems and then the triumphant successful print, we get a glimpse of where this technology is at. It is a refreshing take on things, with the understandably high expectations that an Engadget reviewer would have. But don’t let that deter you – there are some lighter moments.

“It makes a lot of really cool noises.”

Click through to read the full review, where there are also a number of images and a neat video overview for you to enjoy. Is it really “the most accessable 3D printer that you can currently buy”?

Read on to find out!

via Engadget

MakerBot announces new Replicator dual extrusion 3D printer for pre-order

with bread-loaf size build area!

MakerBot has announced the latest model to their line of personal 3D printers, and this one’s not a kit. The new MakerBot Replicator™ is a fully assembled desktop 3D printer that lets you print 2 different materials or colors in a single design.

It features a wider shape and a larger print area. It also comes with a new MakerBot Strepstruder for extruding ABS or PLA plastics, and you can choose either a single or dual extruder version.

Bre Pettis, CEO of MakerBot, will show off the Replicator at CES tomorrow. But you can already pre-order the Replicator starting at $1,749. (Well, you can whenever their site recovers from the traffic crash.)

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Makerbot Thing-O-Matic now available in a retail store

Is this the first 3D printer to be sold in a brick-and-mortar retail store?

The MakerBot Thing-O-Matic is now available for sale by the NYC retailer AC Gears, a well-known gadget and technology store, in their brick-and-mortar store as well as through their website. As far as I know, this is the first time a 3D printer has been sold in a retail store, but I’m not certain. Does anyone know of another?

Expanding the availability of MakerBots to the general public is likely part of the rapid expansion that began when MakerBot received $10 million in venture capital investment.

Via Fabbaloo

Cool stuff from the New Museum MakerBot Challenge

“New Art, New Ideas”

Spiral Lightbulb Sculpture 1 by benglish

The New Museum MakerBot Challenge is ending soon, so I thought I’d take a look at some of the entries tagged for the contest on Thingiverse. Some of the entries have already been covered here, such as Joseph Larson’s 3D printed recorder and TeamTeamUSA’s Project Shellter.

The Challenge is meant to solicit designs printable on a Thing-o-Matic that play with existing conventions and personalize/improve them in some way. Objects can be tagged with “NewMuseumChallenge” on Thingiverse without any say from the designer, so it’s not 100% clear what is and isn’t in the contest, but here are three great designs that were so tagged: (more…)