Author Archives: bart

Community Journal #6

Posted by in Community
We’re back with another episode of our look in to the Shapeways community! This time, we feature some interesting Shapeways related activities in other communities, an interview with a well-known community member and two Shapeways Crew events.
Tofty’s Prybar Pass-Around

Tofty designs some pretty mean Tritium-powered keyfobs and steel tools. As a member of the MultiTool community, he organised a Pass-Around to give his fellow members a chance to try out his MT.O Prybar tool and share their thoughts on his work. Follow the story on the MultiTool forum.

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Come Meet Us at SIGGRAPH in Los Angeles

Posted by in Events
California, here we come!! Our team will be at SIGGRAPH 2013 in Anaheim, Los Angeles next week. As always, we would love to meet you there! 
To kick off the week, we host a user meetup on Monday July 22nd from 6pm-8pm. Drinks are on us! Bring your best 3D printed products and meet your fellow designers in LA. For full information and to RSVP, please visit our Meetup page.
For the remainder of the week, you can find us at booth 259 on SIGGRAPH 2013 (and in various bars after show). And yes, we will bring our new mystery material! So be there to experience it first hand. 
Need tickets for SIGGRAPH? We’re happy to give you one! Please register here to receive a free exhibit-only ticket.
See you in LA!

Elasto Plastic is Here to Stay

Whenever we launch a new material, we first do extensive in-house testing. We’ll look at its quality and its usefulness for manufacturing products, but also at production issues like rejection rates and machine downtime.
The next step is to offer it to you as a ‘trial’ material. During a period of about two months we learn everything we can about the new material. We collect your feedback and test our design guidelines and material pricing.
With Elasto Plastic, we reached the trial stage twice before but still weren’t convinced we were offering you the best material that we could. The third time’s the charm of course, and we’re happy to announce that Elasto Plastic is now here to stay!
Some small changes in the design guidelines and pricing will follow shortly, but we wanted to get the word out that Elasto Plastic is now a permanent member of the Shapeways Materials family!

White, Strong and Faster! Now Shipping in 6 Days

Whenever we talk to our community, your number one request is always: ‘Can I get it faster?’. And we’re listening! We have been working hard on streamlining our processes and optimizing our machines for speed.

As a first result we are now able to deliver White Strong & Flexible products to you faster than ever: your products will now ship in 6 business days instead of 8!

For now, we offer this faster shipping time for ‘basic’ WSF (not polished or dyed), and for models with all axes < 20cm. All other models in Strong & Flexible Plastic will still ship in 12 business days.

We’re working hard to reduce the delivery times for all our materials, so long as we don’t sacrifice quality or reliability. So stay tuned, we will have more good news coming your way next week!

Meet the Shapeways Community at Taupo Hobby Expo 2013, New Zealand

Posted by in Community

Do you live on the North Island of New Zealand? Then you can meet the Shapeways Community in Taupo this weekend, July 20th and 21st!

Community member Peter Bryant (of Kiwi Trains fame) and his friend Daniela Schlecht are representing Shapeways at the Taupo Hobby Expo 2013. The event is huge – they had over 4,000 visitors last year! (check out these pictures). Come over and say hi to them!

Here’s what Andrew Taylor of the Waikato Scale Model Club says about the event:
“We would like to invite you and anyone else kids, mother in law, uncle etc to come and pay us a visit at the Taupo Hobby Expo 2013 which is being hosted by the Taupo Model Railway Club. This is a two day event and there will be lots to see. Everything from working railways, trucks, cars and planes will be there and we will be displaying our own collection of built models from aircraft, Sci-Fi, cars and ships. Throughout the two days we will also be displaying live model building so you can see how we create that professional look to our models and you can ask us as many questions as you like.
The Show is being held at the Taupo Events Centre which also forms part of the AC Baths on the corner of Centennial Drive and AC Baths Avenue not far from the Lake Taupo Top 10 Holiday Resort one the edge of Taupo township: Link to Map.
The event is on Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st July 2013 and the public times are 10am-5pm Sat and 9am-3pm Sun.
We hope you will come and pay us and the Taupo Hobby Expo 2013 a visit and please come back and keep a look out for details of our next events happening later this year. Bye for now!!!!”
I’m working with Peter and Daniela on the first Shapeways Community Meetup. If you’d like to give us a hand, please get in touch!

Meet the Shapeways Community at Maker Faire in Singapore

Posted by in Community

Shapeways is coming to Singapore. Well, our awesome community is!
FunbieStudios and fakebusker83 are helping us build a booth at Maker Faire Singapore, the “Greatest Show (and Tell) on Earth—a family-friendly showcase of invention, creativity and resourcefulness, and a celebration of the Maker movement”. MF Singapore takes place on Saturday and Sunday July 27 and 28.
Maker Faires are always amazing and I highly recommend you visit the event if you have the time. What’s more, you can become part of it!
We are looking for Shapeways Makers or Shop Owners who can help either during the Saturday or the Sunday. We’ll take care of food and drinks for you, and you’ll get a chance to hang out with the Shapeways community! You’ll also receive some cool Shapeways goodies :)
If you’d like to show off your Shapeways products or promote your Shapeways Shop, please get in touch with Bart. Include on which day(s) you’re available and what kind of work you want to bring, and we’ll hook you up with the local Shapeways Crew.

Experience Our New Elasto Plastic at a Local Meetup

Posted by in meetup

(Picture: Stag by Dotsan)

Did you see our new Elasto Plastic material yet? It’s our first ‘Maker Only’ material, and we’re excited to see how you guys are using it it!

We’d love to give you and your local Shapeways community a chance to experience it in person, so we’re offering every Shapeways community meetup of 10 persons or more a free set of some awesome sample models.

Join a Meetup, or host one!

You can find the upcoming meetups on the Shapeways Community Meetup page. Check the list to see if your area is listed as well, and join! Don’t be afraid to leave a comment on the event page if you have a question or suggestion. These meetups are usually joint efforts, so feel free to help out.

Is your city not listed yet? Then why not start your own meetup? Just add your town so other people can join you and help you with organizing the event. Also send an email to and tell us where you are! We’ll hook you up to other people in your area and give you the low down on hosting a meetup, no experience necessary, just a willingness to meet likeminded people. If you have questions or suggestions about this event, please leave them on the forum.

Receiving the free samples

To qualify for the free sample models, plan an meetup in roughly 4-5 weeks from now, announce it on our Community Meetup page, and make it grow! Once you have gathered a group of 10, get in touch, mail us your address and we’ll order a box with the models for you right away.

The fine print: please understand that we’ll need to print and ship the models to you, so make sure you contact us at least two weeks before your meetup. Only the meetup’s host can apply for the sample box. We can give away 50 of these sample boxes and we’ll do so on a first come, first served basis.

If you have any questions, just leave a comment.

Oh, and the models are yours to keep! Enjoy :)

Bart and Natalia
Shapeways Community Team

Hello Finland! Let’s Meet on June 11!

Posted by in meetup
Shapeways member Heidi Piili is hosting a community meetup this Tuesday, June 11 in Lappeenranta, Finland (I won’t even try to pronounce that). They’re meeting in bar Birra and it’s going to be an informal evening. We sent Heidi a box with some cool models, but bring your own work too!
Remember: running your own Shapeways Meetup is easy (as in: pick a time and a bar) and an amazing amount of fun! If you’re thinking of hosting one, contact us and we’ll give you all the support you need (including cool models to show).

Weekend Contest #15: Get Your Squishy On!

Posted by in Contests
Did you have a chance to look at our new Elasto Plastic yet? We launched it last week and we’re already seeing some pretty amazing things coming out of our printers (daily routine: arrive at the office, grab some coffee, walk past the printers to see what’s going on, have mind blown).
What will you use it for? This weekend I challenge you to come up with some rad new applications for flexible 3D printed objects. 
To up the ante, you can win a $50 printing voucher this week! 

Interview: Maaike van der Horn’s Jewelry

Posted by in Community

In a series of articles on the new ‘handmade’, TechCrunch features an interview with community member Maaike van der Horn. Maaike talks about her training as a traditional goldsmith and how 3D printing now allows her to make designs she couldn’t otherwise. 

Our favorite quote:

“Van der Horn heaps praise on Shapeways, saying that the site made it so easy for her to learn and the prices for materials and printing costs were affordable. Although her initial efforts were a bit rocky – her first printed object was a 2D item – she’s now able to produce interesting, unique and complex shapes.”

Aww, thanks Maaike! :)

Weekend Contest #13: Connect It!

Posted by in Contests

(Image: MagSafe Adapter Key Ring by jbobrow)

Have you seen the The Free Universal Construction Kit? It’s a super-clever set of connectors that allow you to combine different types of toys. Like hook up your Lego to Fischertechnik. Needless to say, kids love it!

What’s interesting to me is that the individual manufacturers would never create these connectors. But as soon as you have access to a 3D printer, it’s easy to make it yourself!

Taking this one step further, I’m curious what other kinds of objects you would like to connect? The Magsafe Adapter Key Ring is one of my favorites (and its creator Jonathan Bobrow just finished a successful Kickstarter campaign with it, congrats!). Let’s see what you guys can come up with during the weekend :)

Check out the full details on the forum

Singapore Shapeways Meetup: It’s a Wrap!

Posted by in Community
Hanyang Leong just reported on yesterday’s Shapeways Meetup in Singapore. Close to 40 people attended, making this one of the larger Shapeways Crew events. Nice job!!
Hanyang writes:
“It was awesome to have so many folks in the Singapore 3D design, modeling and printing community down with us to gawk over the models, share more and basically just geek out over things.
We had so much fun at the meetup, met so many cool folks and sharing and heard so many neat ideas for what to do next!”
Hanyang, thanks for being such an awesome community member! We totally love it when people host their own Shapeways events.
Remember: running your own Shapeways Meetup is easy (as in: pick a time and a bar) and an amazing amount of fun! If you’re thinking of hosting one, contact us and we’ll give you all the support you need (including cool models to show).