Monthly Archives

July 2013


First 3d printer party

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This weekend we finally had the first 3d printer party.

As always, through the 3d Print Barcelona meetup group where I am the organizer.

We had around 90 people that did RSVP in total, but I had the feeling that not all of them came. I also have to mention that the fact that it was taking a day and a half generated some dilution of people, and I did not spend a second counting people. Many new faces, in fact.

We were hosted in the Ateneu de Fabricació, public space lended to us while we organize activities that revert back to the city, either by spreading technology, or by generating projects that revert back, etc.

The premise is awesome: wide, illuminated, full of possibilities. And there will be 3d equipment 🙂


Friday afternoon

On Friday we met around 15 printers. There were BCN3D, Prusa i2Prusa i3 and the famous Gofre 3d from Luis Rodriguez.

First part of the afternoon was dedicated to setup our printers, organize ourselves, etc and attend the curious visitors that came to see the printers working. In my case, I was walking around speaking to everyone. I start to have problems to distinguish what I have been talking about with each one and the worst, I am bad with names! so if I don’t remember your name it’s not personal…sorry!! I have to interact several times with someone to be able to fix his name in my memory… 🙁

In addition, we are already 200 in the group. Growing fast!


Around 7pm,when atmosphere was more quiet and only geeks were still there we had a little round table. The topic was wide. What do we do with 3d printers, how do we see the future in 5 years, what will people be using the printers for, wil there be a printer in every home, business models, well, we spent more than 1h enjoying our discussions.

And I think this was one of the activities most appreciated. Took note for next time!



By the way,at 4pm it was so hot…still some things to polish in the Ateneu, and one of them is the air conditioning.

Saturday was more quiet, unexpected for me. I guess people were going to the beach or it was more difficult for them to convince their wife to let them go, who knows 😉


PLYUMP  PLYUMP  Ateneu en chocolate

Luis presentation, and the printing of “Ateneu les Corts” in chocolate.

We had two presentations, food printing from Luis Rodriguez where he showed us in real time how he was printing 3d texts in chocolate and he presented his personal project to us. The different versions to improve the peristaltic pump (it makes the food go up through the extruder and the syringe). He was working on version 0.49 if I am not mistaken. What a passion! and he also explained the different food materials tested.

Very instructive and interesting, by touching a different topic.

Then we made a classic one. Albert Campos presented Introduction to 3d Printing. A presentation that he did already in May in our group (Thanks Albert!) but I think it has to be there regularly as one of our group objectives is to spread the technology and what you can do with it. And let’s be realistic, there is a big portion of the 200 members of the group that do not have a printer. Some of them have the intention, others just start to show interest in the topic, looking to understand if this could be useful for their job or hobby. And here we have graphical designers, industrial designers, architects, makers, etc.., even gamers and miniature passionate. Very assorted!

Introducción 3d Printing

The next talk was done by Albert again. This time about materials.  In addition to the typical PLA & ABS he also explained Nylon, LayWood and LayBrick.

I already bought a sample of the two last ones to test. Wood texture should be cool 🙂

After that we went out for lunch, just because it was quiet. That was good because we grouped with people from Clone Wars that also came. They had a vision more focused on the engineering aspects of printers (i am clearly biaised to software). For those that do not know Clone Wars is “The Community” in Spain for home 3d printing. If you wnat to build your own printer this is the place to go given the amount of information that you can find and the support that they provide, especially for RepRap Prusa i2 and i3.

Mi impresora  Prusa i2  Prusa i3

Printers BCN3D, Prusa i2 and Prusa i3

Below, David & Mark with their project: Noom


And the afternoon was more quiet still with some visits and chatting between us.

We left the place just asking ourselves when the next event was going to take place. We’ll see.

October or November sounds like a good time. For now we are working on lessons learned. You can join and contribute in our mailing list in Google Groups.

And starting on September we will meet in the Ateneu every other week. I will post the events in the meetup group.

If you want some pictures there are several here.


3d printing for others – first experiencies

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I alreday have my first experiencies by 3d printing for others.

If you need to print something, you can contact me on the menu page “Do I 3d print anything for you?“.

The first request was jewelry printing. Already served.

Marisol makes her own designs with Autocad. And it seems sh has some success around her family and friends.

In fact the pieces gave me  hard time, because they were objects of 2 mm height maximum, with relief and plenty of jumps.


The first prints in PLA had plenty of threads and I had to play with the retract setup to reduce the effect of leaking plastic from the hotend while he moves from one side to the other. There are several parameters related to retract, one of them is the distance that the extruder has to make the plastic move when travelling,a nd of course the speed of the travel.

I also made ABS printings, to check the difference.

If you like her designs you can contact Marisol at marisol_rovira [at] yahoo [dot] es

First tests in PLA. If you look at original size you can see the threads.



Here the whole pack that I printed.

This was the only delivery that I made. And I have three additional requests ongoing.






Truth is, none of them is just print and go. all requests are very thin, in the limit or over it.

  • the pole to hold the catenary on train miniatures. I am working on it, I printed in ABS but it is too thin and when I checked its strength it just broke in my hands. Then I tried with PLA, known to b stronger than ABS. But it seems still fragile for the forces it needs to hold coming from the catenary. They respect sizes at perfection and electricity has to go through the catenary, and no way to change the 3d model. As Miquel came to our printer party I gave him the two tests for free so he could check this out with his father, the real pro on miniatures. But we both left convinced that it was not going to work.
  • a copy of Assassins’ Creed Hidden Blade. Amazing!! the person who asked me is currently working out the 3d model. There are more than 10 pieces to assemble and the whole thing i very thin so I expect hard work again. Nut well, when he finishes the design of any piece we can try. The good thing. He plans to share the model in Thingiverse once finished.
  • an objected with nested elements. The mesh had some sphere nodes net in spherical form, and two spheres around with holes on it. First problem was that the walls were not solid (width = 0) and the second is that the pieces were floating so you need supports and see what happens. I will not be bored!


The catenary pole, in ABS

I will keep doing tests.

But if I don’t receive easier models, like a GoPro support that is upload and print -a no brainer-, this short experience let’s me validate what RepRapBCN people already told me: the price people are willing to accept does not compensate the hours you have to put in there. You have to count the full management of a request: manage the contact, verify the model, generate gcode, heat the printer and print, deliver. You cannot make a living with this. However, there are bets for this model such as and e should see how this evolves.

In these websites that want to build hubs of printers the prices go to the minimum that the website has established, around $0.25 a 0.50/cm3. No business. My understanding is that there are currently several printers with excess of capacity and the owners want to get some cash to reduce their investment…but too much offer for little demand. In fact in Barcelona there is even no offer, and the demand probably does not know where to go.

I believe there is no business model, only to get a bit of extra cash. In fact i think 3d printing is not generating value added. It will end up as the photocopy shops in the past, when only price counted as any other commodity.

And then, where is the valuer? but it’s still not clear. Private printing is still too young. For now the business is to sell printers. New models appear.

You also have groups like shapeways growing 100% every six months or i.materialise. Both do research on new materials and so are providing value to the customer. Customer is willing to pay more for jewels & decoration, especially if you have materials such as metal, silver and gold.

And for now the sector is growing 25% yearly, so these ones will continue growing.

Where I see a value proposition is in CAD design. When we flood the market with 3d printers, if it ever happens, someone will have to feed them with 3d models to print.

Another business model. There are few websites that want to put in contact designers with clients, and meanwhile facilitate 3d printing so that they close the full cycle.

Also thinking about collaboration with designers (Etsy version for 3d) Shapeways let designers create their own shop in their website and their business is focused on printing, with a low commission to the designer.

We are just at the beginning. Many ideas will be tried, some of them will succeed and other swill fail. Let’s see what happens!

Maker Faire Barcelona

Maker Faire Barcelona

By | 3D Printing, DIY, Events, maker | No Comments

Last Saturday I joined the Mini Maker Faire Barcelona.

Maker Faire Barcelona

I am a bit late on publishing because I went on business trip this week.

But I enjoyed the event, and it is worth posting even late.

Maker Faire

They had a block of Bailen street taken, in addition to the MOB premise.

There was any kind of maker stuff, many based on technology platforms such as Arduino.

Otro estilo

Another type of 3d




MADE invention. Very cool, and built in just a week. Power of makerspaces!

Inside the “helmet” there si an iPad showing the image from the camera in the basement. Camera is moved by a servo, actioned by a raspberry pi.

To detect the head turns they used an Android phone on top of the helmet to provide gyroscope readings.

Good job!!






And quite some 3d printers:

  • UP printer, distributed by entresD in Spain
  • Resin printer prototype from Joan and his associate. They will retail it soon
  • The omnipresent and solid BCN3D printers from RepRapBCN (disclaimer: I have one…)
  • My colleagues of BuilRepRap. They organize workshops to build your own Prusa i3
  • The food printer from Luis Rodríguez, with his particular printing of Petit Suisse, jellies and others.

Jordi Reynés, who manages the Ateneu de Fabricació, was also there and manage to close dates and other topics for our event next week.

It will be the biggest that we have ever done, Friday afternoon and the whole Saturday, bringing our own 3d printers.

If you have a printer RSVP here. If you don’t have it but want to know more you’re welcome here.

And now some pics of the event.


Impressora Joan

Joan and his resin printer. With STL (Stereolithography) you get better resolutions than with FDM (plastic deposition)


The BuildRepRap stand. Do you want to build a Prusa i3 in one weekend?? this is the place…

Gofre 3d

Luis and his Gofre 3d. Just printing jelly, I guess!


RepRapBCN stand. They had normal plastic printing and cookies printing.


Easy Solid

Easy Solid, with his brand new model, improved compared to the initial prototype

And this Sunday to Betahaus in the meeting with Etsy.

PS: except for the first two pictures, all others belong to Ugo Riboni under CC BY license
Ateneu de Fabricació

Mega party with 3d printers July 12th and 13th in Barcelona

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Those who follow this blog know that I have a 3d printer for two months now and I’ve been diving into the 3d printing world in Barcelona. My aim is to build a community, meet other people and learn what is going on in the city. I am just  a simple user, full of passion and willing to do things 🙂

We have made some events, but finally we are going to meet with our printers!

Our printers are going to meet!

We have the first big meetup event on Friday 12th and Saturday 13th from 3d Print Barcelona group.

And Ateneu de Fabricació de Les Corts will be used for the first time.

Ateneu de Fabricació

Ateneu de Fabricació inside

Although the meetup states “Barcelona” it is open to anyone from other cities or regions.

If you can make to be in Barcelona those days and you are interested in private 3d printing, this is the place to go, to see, to touch, to ask and also to show your printer.

You will see printers doing nice things like this, from my colleagues in RepRapBCN:

Or more funny projects like food printing from Luis Rodríguez, a group member.


We have spots for 40 printers. If you are going to bring one, RSVP here.

If you just want to check the place you are also more than welcome. RSVP here.

Ah, and we do all this just for fun. Free event!

By the way, if there is any presentation or speech that you are keen to do we will also have room for that. Just contact me directly or through the comments.