The 3Doodler 3D Printing Pen

by Matthew Wellington on March 12, 2013

3Doodler 3D Printing PenThe 3Doodler is currently one of the most innovative projects that has ever been launched on Kickstarter.

Considering it is the world’s very first 3D printing pen, WobbleWorks has received enormous recognition for being the brains behind the creation of 3Doodler.

The project has so far received funding of close to £1.3 million, greatly surpassing WobbleWorks’ estimated funding target of just £18,000.

These numbers clearly show that the market has been yearning for such a product and are willing to spend their money on it. Apparently even WobbleWorks had not anticipated the huge demand that the 3Doodler possess at the moment.

Being a 3D printing pen, with a 3Doodler you can basically draw and create various 3D objects. The pen has taken the technology of 3D printing a few notches higher, removing the need to have a 3D printer in order to fabricate three dimensional objects.

How Does the 3Doodler Work?

Before the invention of this 3D printing pen, the only way of fabricating 3D objects was through 3D printers. The user had to design the object from his PC and then send the final design to the 3D Printing Service  for fabrication.

One of the problems resulting from the use of 3D printers, however, was it involved quite a lengthy process before you could obtain the object. But the 3Doodler has a more simplistic approach.

You must first plug the pen to a power socket before you can start drawing your 3D objects. The use of electricity is necessary because it melts the plastic materials in the pen, which you’ll be ‘drawing’ the objects with. The Doodler uses just the same plastic materials that 3D printers use. One can therefore choose to either use ABS or PLA depending on what you prefer. But ABS is the material that’s commonly used in the 3Doodler.

It is often recommended that you allow a few minutes from the time you plug the pen into the socket before you start using it. This is meant to ensure proper melting of the material inside. Thereafter you simply press a button on the pen to begin drawing.

When drawing, the plastic material will be slowly released and quickly cools off to form the object you want to create. 3Doodler can be used to draw objects either on paper or in the air. Usually people with less artistic skills would prefer to make their drawings on paper after which you can stand up your drawings or even join several drawings you have made on paper, to form the final object you had in mind.

But for professional artists and designers, the pen literally allows you to draw ‘on air’, fabricating your 3D objects or prototypes with a series of hand movements.

Since the 3Doodler is a new product in the market, WobbleWorks has expressed intentions to sell the product accompanied with stencil kits that will show new users the incredible designs that the pen can create. Essentially the stencils will help users to visualise the capabilities of the pen from a broader artistic perspective.

3Doodlers vs 3D Printers

Once the 3Doodler sets foot into the market, buyers will have a big decision to make especially when it comes to choosing between using the 3Doodler or 3D printers.

Well, you stand a lot to gain by purchasing the 3Doodler. Looking at some of its rudimentary benefits, the 3Doodler is extremely easy to use. Unlike using a 3D printer, where you need a little bit of skill in CAD and CAM processes, provided you have used a pen, using a 3Doodler doesn’t have much of a learning curve.

3D printers are also quite heavy hence they allow for limited portability. The 3Doodler on the other hand is compact and highly portable. If you are a real 3D printing enthusiast, you would most likely want to create your 3D creations practically anywhere you go. This therefore makes the 3Doodler just the kind of 3D printing ‘tool’ that you need.

The high price of 3D printers is equally a factor that has prevented many artists from freely creating their own 3D prototypes. With the persistent economic turbulence, parting with at least £16,000 for a 3D printer is certainly the last thing one would want to do. Good news is you only need about £50 to own a 3Doodler.

And unlike using a 3D printer, you won’t incur further costs of purchasing a capable computer and necessary 3D Printing Software Tools in order to print 3D objects. The 3Doodler is sold together with the plastic strands (materials) required to print 3d objects. You can then order further materials of different colours, to suit your own personal preferences or design requirements.

The only upside of using 3D printers over the 3Doodler is the fact that 3D printers are more convenient and efficient when printing larger 3D prototypes and generally produce a more professional, sturdier product.

Modifications Yet to be Made

The final design of the 3Doodler 3D printing pen is yet to be released as the product is still undergoing some final modifications to better the whole consumer experience. The company for instance has voiced its intentions to modify the shell of the pen into a better, more appealing design.

WobbleWorks is also looking for a way to add a protective layer on the tip of the pen as a safety measure to the user. The tip of the pen is metallic and gets very hot when in use. This can cause accidental burns, just like a soldering iron.

WobbleWorks Kickstarter is further working with a team of wire experts to create a wide variety of wire objects that the 3Doodler can fabricate. The objects created will be used to form templates that will be sent to buyers as a way of jumpstarting the creativity of users, by showing them the amazing things the 3D printing pen can do.

The 3Doodler 3D Printing Pen is expected to hit the market by September 2013, and will most likely be a huge success, if the hype is anything to go by.

Feel free to leave a comment about the 3Doodler below, or share this with your friends.

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