Posts Tagged ‘3d printing’

Blacksmith Genesis is an Affordable 3-in-1 3D Printer, Scanner, and Copier

February 20th, 2015 No comments

Multifunction printers have been commonplace for many years, and allow you to print, scan, or copy any document with or without your computer, but when it comes to 3D is a little more complicated. First, it’s usually quite harder to design a 3D object than typing some text into a word processor, although 3D objects online database like thingiverse do help. If you want to copy a 3D object, you may have to buy a 3D scanner such as MakerBot Digitizer, and a 3D printer such as Makerbot Replicator 2 which takes space and costs about $3,000 in total. Multifunction 3D printer are slowly coming to market with for example AIO Robotics Zeus which recently shipped to backers, and is now available for $2,500. An other option is Singapore made BlackSmith Genesis, a compact multifunction 3D printer that can print, scan, and copy objects based on a rotary design, that successfully completed a crowdfunding  campaign last year, and is now taking pre-orders for $2,200 + $150 shipping max for June 2015 delivery.

3D_CopierBlackSmith Genesis technical specifications:

  • Printing
    • Technology – Fused deposition modeling with rotary platform
    • Build volume  – 6648 cm3 (23 cm diameter / 16 cm height)
    • Layer resolution – 50-200 microns
    • Filament – PLA 1.75mm diameter
    • Nozzle diameter – 0.4mm
    • Print file type – .STL, .OBJ
  • Scanning
    • Technology – Laser triangulation
    • Scan volume – 5542 cm3 (21cm diameter / 16 cm height)
    • Scan speed – About 6 minutes
    • Steps per rotation – 1,200 steps
    • Camera – 3.1MP CMOS Image Sensor
    • Exported file type – .STL, .OBJ
  • Interfaces – USB, SD card, and Wi-Fi (WiP)
  • Power Supply – 100-240W / 50-60Hz / 100W
  • Dimensions – 35 x 25 x 41 cm
  • Weight – 11 kg (Indiegogo), but they’ve now reduced the weight to 6kg

The printer-scanner is controlled via a web-based software bundle called Blacksmith Sorcerer. The camera for the scanner can also be used to remotely monitor the printing progress via your smartphone or tablet. The video below demonstrate the main features of the printer.

Via EETAsia

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Categories: Hardware Tags: 3d printing

Crowdfunding Report for 2014 on CNX Software Blog

January 5th, 2015 4 comments

Following up on my 2013 Crowdfunding Report, I’ve gone through all 55 Kickstarter and Indiegogo crowdunding projects featured on CNX Software between December 2013 and November 2014 (inclusive) to see how well they fared.


The table below sort projects chronologically as they were published on this very blog.

Date Project Crowdfunding Site Funded?
Pledged amount / Goal
Expected Delivery Actual Delivery Comments
2. Dec. 2013 Micro Python Kickstarter Yes
97,803 GBP / 15,000 GBP
03/2014 04/2014 Available @
5. Dec. 2013 Plugaway Kickstarter Yes
$162,835 AUD / $50,000 AUD
04/2014 - People upset because of lack of updates. Project might be dead, and backers lost their money
6. Dec. 2013 AIRTAME Indiegogo Yes
$1,268,332 / $160,000
05/2014 12/2014 People have started received the beta versions, after a massive 8-month delay
7. Dec. 2013 Crystal Board Kickstarter No
$14,574 / $200,000
04/2014 - The project appears to be dead
10. Dec. 2013 Smart Power Strip Kickstarter Yes
$109,012 / $100,00
04/2014 - People are really upset, because of delays, and especially lack of updates, or incorrect update (e.g. “shipping soon”. Now shipping is schedule now until April 2015
11. Dec. 2013 Iteaduino Lite Indiegogo Yes
$14,778 / $2,000
01/2014 01/2014 Being an Arduino clone, it just works as expected, based on user’s feedback
11. Dec. 2013 Pivotheat SMART Indiegogo Yes
$159,613 / $100,000
06/2014 - Shipping is now expected by January. People are disappointed by delays and lack of updates
13. Dec. 2013 LOGi Board Kickstarter Yes
$114,126 / $6,900
04/2014 05/2014 You can get the board @
21. Dec. 2013 NavSpark Indiegogo Yes
$63,735 / $27,000
03/2014 05/2014 Updates still done after shipping. No specific complains from users. NavSpark community setup @
17. Jan. 2014 Yacy Kickstarter Yes
$17,451 / $10,000
04/2014 06/2014
19. Jan. 2014 ICE xPC Indiegogo No
$10,734 / $300,000
07/2014 - Flexible campaign, but people have been refunded
11. Feb. 2014 Keepod Unite Indiegogo Yes
$40,801 / $38,000
04/2014 05/2014 You can now give and/or get Keepod on
13. Feb. 2014 Webee Boss Indiegogo Yes
$73,373 / $50,000
04/2014 12/2014 8 months delay
14. Feb. 2014 Fin Ring Indiegogo Yes
$202,547 / $100,000
09/2014 - Fin is now scheduled for May 2015, or 8 months delay!
19. Mar. 2014 MicroView Kickstarter Yes
$573,760 / $25,000
09/2014 08/2014 One month early? Too bad the first shipping lacked the bootloader…, and the returns are still being handled
21. Mar. 2014 USB2Go Kickstarter No
$13,963 / $50,000
10/2014 - Website sill up:, not clear if the project is still alive
25. Mar. 2014 Rufus Cuff Indiegogo Yes
$359,463 / $200,000
04/2015 - WIP, and updates are frequent
15. Apr. 2014 Digispark Pro Kickstarter Yes
$103,569 / $10,000
07/2014 09/2014 Shipping has taken place over 4 months (September to December). The board is now available @
22. Apr. 2014 ButtonDuino Indiegogo No
$1,226 / $4,500
08/2014 - It can be pre-ordered @ with shipping Late January 2015.
23. Apr. 2014 MotherBone PiOne Kickstarter No
$4,270 / $60,000
08/2014 - It might be available @
30. Apr. 2014 Arduissimo Indiegogo No
5,031 Euros / 29,600 Euros
11/2014 - Another indiegogo campaign is in progress:
30. Apr. 2014 Dimple NFC Sticker Indiegogo Yes
$87,098 / $43,000
08/2014 - People are losing patience, especially as update are not forthcoming
9. May. 2014 ANTVR Kickstarter Yes
$260,834 / $200,000
09/2014 12/2014 Three months delay
22. May. 2014 VoCore Indiegogo Yes
$116,194 / $6,000
09/2014 11/2014 The module can now be purchased on Vocore website:
30. May. 2014 WifiDuino Indiegogo No
$12,710 / $23,000
10/2014 - The project has been cancelled
30. May. 2014 AsiaRF AWM002 Indiegogo Yes
$7,386 / $6,000
07/2014 08/2014 Many people complain about the lack of documentation. I also got one module, and It was not clear I needed to provide power with 3 different voltages when I backed the project.
2. Jun. 2014 miniSpartan6+ Kickstarter Yes
$80,897 / $7,500
08/2014 12/2014 Four months delay
5. Jun. 2014 EzeeCube Indiegogo Yes
$146,666 / $75,000
12/2014 - Shipping is now expected by February
12. Jun. 2014 Soap Router Indiegogo Yes
$261,318 / $42,500
02/2015 - Shipping expected for January 2015 in the latest update.
However, they changed the product specs, and some people are upset
13. Jun. 2014 Console OS Kickstarter Yes
$79,497 / $50,000
12/2014 12/2014 Beta version release
14. Jun. 2014 Papilio DUO Kickstarter Yes
$62,707 / $30,000
12/2014 - Delivery scheduled for January
28. Jun. 2014 Amptek Icon Kickstarter No
$3,626 CAD / $55,000 CAD
10/2014 - Icon board can be purchased @
17. Jul. 2014 MicroNFCBoard Kickstarter Yes
20,885 GBP / 20,000 GBP
10/2014 01/2015 Shipping scheduled for 8 Jan 2015
24. Jul. 2014 Immedia Blink Kickstarter Yes
$1,069,386 / $200,000
05/2015 -
29. Jul. 2014 TouchPico Indiegogo Yes
$869,827 / $55,000
10/2014 - Doing FCC/CE certification now
2. Aug. 2014 VolksPC Indiegogo No
$1,519 / $80,000
10/2014 - It’s unclear whether the project will go forward independently
11. Aug. 2014 Atomwear Kickstarter Yes
$13,740 CAD / $12,000 CAD
11/2014 12/2014
13. Aug. 2014 Squink Kickstarter Yes
$100,380 / $100,00
04/2015 -
20. Aug. 2014 Raspberry Pi Slice Kickstarter Yes
227,480 GBP / 90,000 GBP
11/2014 01/2015
20. Aug. 2014 STACK Box Kickstarter Yes
$87,500 / $65,000
12/2014 12/2014
25. Aug. 2014 RPISoC Kickstarter No
$14,323 / $20,000
01/2015 - The project is still going on outside Kickstarter →
1. Sep. 2014 xWiFi Wi-Fi Module Indiegogo Yes
$12,649 / $4,500
11/2014 12/2014 Some people complain it did not work out of the box
15. Sep. 2014 Com1 Android Wear Watch Indiegogo No
$?? / $ ??
01/2015 - Project taken down following Google request
16. Sep. 2014 WeIO IoT Board Indiegogo Yes
$37,437 / $10,000
11/2014 01/2015 Should ship this month
Can be pre-ordered @ with shipping scheduled for February 2015
19. Sep. 2014 MOD DUO Kickstarter Yes
$82,781 / $65,000
06/2015 -
30. Sep. 2014 MicroDuino JoyPad Kickstarter Yes
$27,007 / $20,000
11/2014 11/2014 On time, but some people are still waiting for their package.
1. Oct. 2014 MatchStick Kickstarter Yes
$470,310 / $100,000
02/2015 - Developers unit have shipped to backers in November 2014. I expect them to keep their schedule promise
7. Oct. 2014 TinyScreen Kickstarter Yes
$128,813 / $15,000
01/2015 - Shipping still scheduled for January, or February
9. Oct. 2014 The Egg Kickstarter No
$18,489 / $500,000
12/2014 - A new Kickstarter campaign is planned in January 2015
29. Oct. 2014 Zero+ IoT Wi-Fi Board Indiegogo No
$624 / $25,000
02/2015 -
6. Nov. 2014 Maker Club 3D Printed Robots Indiegogo Yes
12,018 GBP / 10,000 GBP
07/2015 -
14. Nov. 2014 Xped DeB Kickstarter Yes
$29,288 AUD / $18,5474 AUD
04/2015 -
19. Nov. 2014 DWA8 Wi-Fi Module Indiegogo No
$465 / $5,000
N/A - Available on Taobao
20. Nov. 2014 Jolla Tablet Indiegogo Yes
$1,824,055 / $380,000
05/2015 -
25. Nov. 2014 Imp Computer Indiegogo No
$12,092 / $100,000
03/2015 -

Hall of Shame

Last year, it was clear FocusWill Coolship project was a disaster, and the project owner clearly did not deliver the goods and kept silent. This year, I could not find project that I’m 100% sure failed with money being lost, but at least Plugaway Wi-Fi smart sockets could be a project where backers lost their money. The sockets were supposed to be delivered in March 2014, but nothing so far, and the last update in November is only about the API, nothing about delivery despite backers complains.

AFAICS, nobody lost money with Com1 Android Wear smartwatch, but they should have known better, as Google asked Indiegogo to take the project down, because only Google partners can develop and manufacture Android Wear devices.

Stats and Projects Delays

Out of the 55 campaigns, 15 project failed to reached their funding targets. Most projects without a successful crowdfunding still carried out, with 4 to 6 projects completely dead. That means 72% of projects got funded via crowdfunding, 90% of projects get manufactured (assuming the ones still under development will succeed). AIRTAME got the most funding with over $1,200,000 raised, but has not been so successful in terms of product delivery with 8 months delay.

Many projects are delayed, but Smart Socket Strip may take the delay crown, with a massive 1-year delay for the project, and backers upset of the constant postponing (or lies) about delivery dates. Fin Ring is also pretty bad, as the September 2014 promised delivery is now expected to occur on May 2015.

Hall of Fame

This year several project managed to deliver working products on time, although sometimes shipping was have taken place over a few months.

  • IteaDuino Lite Arduino clone was delivered right on schedule just a year ago.
  • MicroDuino JoyPads were delivered on November 2014 as promised
  • The first version of Console OS Android operating system for PC was released on December 2014.
  • STACK Box Home Automation / IoT Gateway were sent in December 2014. There aren’t many feedback for now, as most people are still waiting for delivery, or have just received their device.

Many other projects shipped with just one month delay, and still got good user feedback, and an active community around them, such as Micro Python, LOGi boar, VoCore Wi-Fi module, NavSpark. MicroView was also on schedule, and even slightly ahead of schedule, but unfortunately, Sparkfun shipped several boards without bootloaders, and they are still handling the returns.

That’s all for today. If you’ve had good or bad crowd-funding experiences, feel free to share them in the comments section.

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Opendive – Low Cost DIY Open Source 3D Virtual Reality Kit for Smartphones

March 17th, 2014 2 comments

About 10 days ago, I wrote about solution to record and play 360 degrees panoramic videos. One of the itmen was vrAse virtual reality case for your smartphone, and allows you to enjoy immersive 3D experience. If you’d rather do your own, than buy a kit for about 100 Euros, there’s an open source project called OpenDive that does about the same thing, and allows you to play games in 3D.

All you need to do is to download the 3D files, print the head-mounted glasses it with your 3D printer, and buy the lense kit (6.99 Euros) to get a complete working system. You may have to modify the design, and adapt it to your phone dimensions. And if you don’t have a 3D printer, somebody provided instructions to do your own by cutting wood or plastic sheets. You then should be able to watch 360 deg. panorama videos, and play 3D games (See current list) as shown in the video below:

If you are a game developer (iOS or Android), you can use the Dive SDK to make your games support the glasses.

More information can be found on Opendive page. There’s also a commercial version called the Dive.

Thanks to Matthias for the tip.

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Open Source Prosthetic Arm Controlled By Muscle Movements

June 24th, 2013 7 comments

Gustavo Brancante is working on a very interesting project that let you control a prosthetic arm with your muscle movement using open source technology with InMoov Hand (which can be 3D printed), Arduino Uno R3, and Olimex Electrocardiography electromiography shield (SHIELD-EKG-EMG). This is called a Myo-Electric Prosthesis.


Gabriel wrote a tutorial to use his “open arm” which I’ll summarize here.

On the hardware front, you’ll also need a UDP compatible Wifi Shield configured as a UDP server with a fixed IP in the same LAN as the smartphone, and 57600 bps.

TouchOSC (for smartphone and Workstation) is used with the following layout for calibration and feature selection.

Finally load the program below to your Arduino board:

Once everything is connected together, you should be able to do that:

The demo looks impressive, but this is still work in progress, and next step will be to use a four channel EMG instead of the single channel Olimex EMG shield to be able to detect more advanced movements.

Via Olimex Blog

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PengPod 700 Linux Tablet Used As a 3D Printer Touchscreen Controller

April 6th, 2013 1 comment

PengPod 700 & 1000 are two of the rare Linux tablets to be available on the market. Those tablets are based on AllWinner A10 SoC which can support both Android and Linux thanks to independent developers. After a successful Indiegogo campaign, where they managed to received pledges for a few hundred units of both model, people started to receive their Linux tablets earlier this year. Francesco Santini decided to purchase PengPod 700 in order to use it as an touchscreen controller for his 3D printer (Solidoodle).


He modified Pronterface, a graphical user interface written in Python to control 3D printer, for the 7″ display the of PengPod tablet, and made the change available in his github account


He uses a SAMBA share to copy G-code files (“G-code is the common name for the most widely used numerical control (NC) programming language”), and load the required file from the PengPod using the interface above.

He also created the holders to mount the tablet on the printer, as seen in the picture at the top, and uploaded the design files to, which can be good if you need a stand for your tablet, whether you have a 3D printer or not.

You can find (or ask) more information on Soliforum.

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Replicate CAPE Adds 3D Printring Capability to the Beaglebone

February 2nd, 2013 No comments launched the Beaglebone Cape Design Contest back in November, several designs were submitted, and yesterday, they announced the 3 winning CAPEs who will be manufactured and sold by Circuitco Electronics:

  • Replicape by Elias Bakken – 3D printer cape
  • Interacto by Chris Clark – Cape with a triple axis accelerometer,a gyroscope, a magnetometer and a 640×480 30fps camera.
  • Geiger cape by Matt Ranostay – Geiger counter cape

Since today I’ve started to write about 3D printing, let’s carry on and have a closer look at the Replicape.


The Replicape 3D printer cape includes:

  • 5 stepper motors (X, Y, Z, Ext1, Ext2)
  • 3 high power MOSFETs (PWM controlled) for 2 extruders and 1 HPB
  • 3 medium power MOSFETs (PWM controlled) for up to 3 fans
  • 3 analog input ports for thermistors
  • 3 inputs for end stops (X, Y, Z)
  • Programmable current limits on steppers motor drivers (SMD). No need to manually adjust a pot meter.
  • Microstepping individually programmable for each SMD from 1 to 32.
  • X, Y and Ext 1 SMDs wired to PRUICSS for hard real time operation.
  • Option for stackable LCD cape

It seems to be working, albeit slowly, as a control board for the Makerbot Cupcake.

The replicate hardware files (schematics, bill of materials, gerber files), and the source code (Python and C) for the PRU and controlling stepper motors, are available on Bitbucket. So you could make it yourself, or buy the Replicate from Circuitco when it’s available, and improve the source.

You can also follow Elias progress on his blog:

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3D Systems Cube and CubeX 3D Printers and Cubify Online Service

February 2nd, 2013 No comments

3D Systems was at CES 2013 to showcase their 3D printers, and their online 3D printing ecosystem called Cubify, where you can design your own model, order the object to be 3D printed, which is then shipped to your door.

They have 2 printers that are available for the home market:Cube 3D Printer

  • Cube 3D printer ($1,399)

Print size: 140 x 140 x 140 mm / Resolution: 200 microns

  • CubeX 3D printer ($2,799 to $4,399)

Print size: 275 mm x 265 mm x 240 mm / Resolution: 125 microns. The CubeX can support 1, 2, or 3 printer heads in order to print objects with multiple colors and/or materials.

Charbax shot a video with the company, and I’ve learnt quite a few interesting things about 3D printing:

  • It’s been around for nearly 30 years, but only used by the industry until recently.
  • 3D printing takes a lot of time. The small spaceship shown in the picture above takes 5 hours to print, a ring about 40 minutes, (designer) shoes take 7 to 10 hours to print in one of the industrial machines.
  • Cubify_3D_Printed_Samurai_Full_ColorThe body of drones are 3D printed, as well as hearing aid, and they produce 65,000 individually customized invisible aligners for teeth every day.
  • You can print in more than 3 colors, as 3D systems industrial machines supports up to 390,000 shades of color.
  • It does not have to be too expensive, as you can print even without a 3D printer, by sending your design to Cubify. The 3D samurai on the picture on the right (about the size of a hand) costs around $60 to print.
  • Business appears to be good.

The 3D printed guitar (Atom 3D) in the video is also pretty interesting, but it costs between $3000 to $4000 depending on the customization options.

Cubify also have a developers’ page that let people monetize 3D printing when people order prints via 2 options:

  • AppCreate for modelers – No programming knowledge is necessary, and this piece of software allows designers and modelers to create web apps for 3D printing.
  • Cubify API for developers – SOAP interface using OAuth. The company also provides a reference PHP implementation that wraps all of the web calls, as well as a sample HTML app. You need to design an app that creates 3D models, then uses the Cubify API to connect to the platform so that 3D printed creations are printed by Cubify Cloud Printing service and shipped out.
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