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Colibri Effect Contest’s winners and other stories

3D Printer Software Online and Open Source: FABUI COLIBRI

Time’s up!
Fairs are all gone (for the moment), Easter Egg has expired, the Printing Head PRO awaiting time is matter of days, Colibri Effect Contest is over. It’s definitely time to sum everything up!

 

1. Fairs and Shows
We have been roaming a bit around Italy and Europe: did you have the chance to meet us? We introduced our Printing Head PRO and Hydra. Have you read about them already? Have a first glimpse on our website!
People during the shows have always welcomed us and found our projects great. Some of you also joined us and discovered what we are working on, as well as the mentioned new products.
In the upcoming months we’ll try to be at other fairs: if we’re missing an important date let us know and if it is not 2017 maybe 2018 we’ll see us partecipating.

2. Printing Head PRO availability
Introduced a while ago, now it’s at the final tests stage. In a few days it will be added on the store: a newsletter will follow soon after. We’re proud of the results, as quality of the prints is higher than ever and range of filaments is widening up constantly.

3. Colibri Effect Contest is over
After a beta testing period where many of our friends and users have been helping us troubleshooting, the very first FABtotum Colibri 1.0 version is ready to be used by everyone. Many features have been added, checked, tested.
This means the contest we lauched on the same time has come to an end, we have the five winners’ names! Congratulations to:

@christopherwit
@florentmaye
@homahe
@AndrewKillian
@dr4Ke

We really want to thank them as they really helped the Dev Team. A constant flow of reports, feedbacks and advices have overwhelmed them: that’s the purpose of having an Open Source project. This is a benefit both for you and us: we can have a better result, you have a better product. Easy.
The winners will be contacted via email within 8th of May in order to organize the withdrawal of the prize.

Again, thanks for being such a great community: a particular mention goes to the member of the Forums as well. Keep up the good work! It is a true inspiration for us to see that many “old fellows” are still with us and use their FABtotums for completely different projects. Their help to others, also, is a helping hand for Support Team.
Summing up, this period has seen us busy: all the Team members had a full agenda. We still have a lot to tell though. We’ll be back in May with our Community Highlights (if you want to be featured write us), we’ll get you precise dates for the release of the Printing Head PRO and more is just yet to come. Meanwhile, stay tuned.

 

Cheers and congrats to the Colibri Effect Contest winners!
FABteam

FABtotum’s Printing Head PRO: a new professional approach

Testina per stampante 3D professionale con direct drive extruder Printing Head PRO

FABTOTUM is yet ready to take its FABtotum Personal Fabricator to professionals with its upcoming hi-performance Printing Head PRO.

 

Serial production of prototypes with the 3D printing head PRO

 

The FABtotum goes PRO
With the capability of switching heads, the FABtotum Personal Fabricator is an evolved 3D printer that can 3D print, mill, engrave, laser cut and more.
The Printing Head PRO is the first head module of the FABtotum PRO line: a full new set of Heads will be announced during the 2017 and 3D printing is the first function to take advantage of this (r)evolution.
What’s new with that? What’s the difference with the previous Printing Head V2? There’s more than one.
The new concept, of course, will still benefit of the main idea of the project: retrocompatible with all the FABtotum models, both the first Personal Fabricator and the CORE edition, the Printing Head PRO brings top tier 3D printing to the FABtotum Personal Fabricator.
Directly thought to be the solution
The Printing Head PRO is a direct-drive system.
Thanks to its fast and precise filament control, objects are sharper and more detailed than ever, even with complex structures that require loads of retractions.
Oozing, Stringing and other filament related issues are a thing of the past.
PRO stands for professional
Precise, long lasting, reliable: all these qualities describe the Head as much as the final objects. The Printing Head PRO is the definitive solution for all 3D printing manufacturing needs on the FABtotum Personal Fabricator platform. It aims to serve a businness when a pre-production phase is required or prototyping is one of the most important steps before the final product is designed.

The Printing Head PRO can support continuos production batches and effectively run for days at a time. The Printing Head PRO is also a big step forward the expanding market of materials. Flexible filaments, special and exotic mixtures are all easy to be printed thanks to the Direct-drive system and to a renewed cooling solution.

 

3D printer heads and supplies: The first Printing Head of the FABtotum PRO line

 

A closer look to the Head
Unlike other printers, the FABtotum can take advantage of its unique hi-torque gantry, originally thought to sustain Milling Head’s subtractive motor. Speeds are not compromised, quality is higher.
Based on the FABtotum Print Head V2 Nozzle design, the Printing Head PRO features exchangeable nozzles, serviceable hotend, a filament fast-release lever and a full metal hot end.
A dedicated power circuit grants low heating / cooling times: the circuit will work both during the pre-print phase and during the final task.
Cooling is granted by a triple fan system that ensures manufacturability even in the hardest spots on big and small objects with few or lots of separated parts.
Bridges, overhangs, holes, steep angles: everything is doable with a Printing Head PRO.

 

The essential solution
Thanks to a new active retention mechanism, the Printing Head PRO will be very permissive of filament density and physical proprieties. But the biggest advantage of the Printing Head Pro is its efficiency for long tasks and pre-production runs: batch printing, serial production of prototypes are now easy achievements for every businness.

 

A quick overview of the specifications:

  • Autonomous Direct Drive System;
  • Filament quick release lever;
  • Stainless steel protection shield;
  • Exchangeable brass nozzle (one is 0.4, optional 0.6 mm, more coming);
  • Thermistor, heating cartridge for cleaning and servicing;
  • Extruder is made from a Full metal Body with 6mm PTFE Liner;
  • Inox steel melting chamber, with heatbreak to stop thermal flow to the head;
  • Aluminium heat sink to cooldown the body and PTFE liner;
  • Max temp: 240°-250°;
  • Materials: PLA, PETG, ABS, NYLON (to be tested HIPS, PC).
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FABTOTUM’s Contest #2: The COLIBRI effect

3D Printer Software Online and Open Source: FABUI COLIBRI

Dear all,

last week COLIBRI left the nest and made its first flight around.
It has flown in many houses and reports are coming back: and that’s what we want to hear from you. How is it going? How is it behaving? Are you already playing with it?

colibryday1

 

The COLIBRI effect contest

Have you ever heard of the Butterfly Effect? Well, we want to see the COLIBRI one!

The FABUI COLIBRI is still beta, meaning we still need some days to see how it goes and adjust it where needed. Luckily, FABtotum has a great community around the world that can try and follow endless different paths that would require the Team too much time to replicate.

Start playing with us: we started together a while ago, it’s time to get together again and make FABUI COLIBRI better!
How to? Simply report us as much as you can, we’ll make a list and a chart of the most influential, active users and reward them. A free spool to the top 5 among you!

How to enter:
Visit the link below and add logs. The Team will review all the comments and feedbacks. The Team will then make a chart of the most interesting logs. Number and quality will then be mixed to get the final winners.

https://github.com/FABtotum/fabui-colibri/issues

 

Times and places:
The contest will officially start on 27th of March at 6pm (GMT+1) and will last until 31st March at 12am (GMT+1) . Winners will be announced with a newsletter between 3rd April and 25th April as soon as the list has been reviewed and.
Any FABtotum owner can partecipate from any place in the world.
Previous logs and reports will be as well counted if the publisher will partecipate.

Prizes:
The top 5 active users will receive a free spool between the standard PLA/ABS ones depending on availability. Winners will be contacted privately via email to check the details within 72h from the newsletter confirming the names.

 

Read the full Terms&Conditions here

 

 

Ready, steady, go!

 

FABtotum

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FABUI COLIBRI: the world first OS for 3Dprinting

3D Printer Software Online and Open Source: FABUI COLIBRI

FABUI COLIBRI is finally ready for its first steps in the world. From today, it’ll be available for dowload. After a first trial period, (the Beta test will last around 40 days) it will then pop up as update for everyone.
Want to try it immediately?
Join the revolution!

fabui_colibri_animated

 

All the FABtotum’s owners have got used to what the FABUI has always been: a web interface that linked the machine and the human. A webpage with a dedicated IP address that could guide the multipurpose device to run all the tasks required.

Well, not exactly. Today, after three years of development, the FABteam is ready to introduce you the very first Operating System for 3D printing: FABUI COLIBRI.
A brand new multipurpose tool for a multupurpose device. The FABtotum CORE and FABUI COLIBRI are the perfect match.
Linux derived, will set a new start and a long path that is yet to be created.
FABUI COLIBRI is the result of a long process: feedbacks from the users of the FABUI and a hard work of tests converted in a complete different experience. COLIBRI is built from the ground up for 3D printing thanks to the Team and all the FABtotum’s owners, who will as well be able to update their devices and join the revolution.

 

What makes FABUI COLIBRI so great?
It’s light, it’s fast, it’s stable. Just like the small animal FABtotum took the name from (colibri is the italian word for hummingbird; some species are called with the same word in english as well), the world’s first Operating System for 3D printing is studied to never leave the user and get him/her a best-ever experience.

Light: it only weights around 150mb and it has everything needed to start working. The file can easily be written on a micro SD (or standard SDs for “older” users) to switch from the FABUI to COLIBRI. Of course, it will be built-in on any new device and it is retro-compatible with all the existing units.

Fast: the first boot takes around 120 seconds, then only around 15 seconds for the next times. The white lights will tell to the user that everything is ready, just as usual. But faster. The FABtotum will be accessible to a standard IP address via Ethernet cable and can be as well connected via Wifi. With both solutions, the webpage will respond immediately to every command, from moving the axis or managing temperatures to uploading the files.

Stable: every Operating System has a recovery method and COLIBRI is developed to never fail. No more loss of files, no more troubles. The first ever OS for 3D printing is able to reboot in a click and fix itself so that the user is never left alone with a crashed system. The FABUI COLIBRI is meant to work continuously. It will as well always automatically update in the background (as long as the device is correctly connected to the net).

Not enough? It also comes with brand new algorithms which will better manage every print; it introduces pauses while printing, it adds a performing virtual visualisation, it has a 3D scanning function performing better than ever. Last but not least, any user will be able to update but also to downgrade both software and firmware should they need to (for instance if they develop a different interface they will always be able to use it no matter what direction FABtotum takes).

 

A simple and user friendly look
The FABUI COLIBRI just looks easy to be used. Main features and threads are clearly listed on the left menu. FABtotum’s owners will recognize the same structure laying behind the revisited one. The new skin is clearer and gets the focus on the most important threads.
Dashboard: the place where all the news are shared via our blog and social accounts. Community craetions are as well shown here.
Make: that’s how the tool and function is chosen. That’s where all the projects become live.
Jog: useful both to check the behaviour of the printer and for any special task.
Maintenance: here is where the user should go when it’s time to clean up, and/or to set the right filament.
Settings: need to fine tune your FABtotum? No problem, everything can be checked and calibrated. From the net to the Hybrid Bed.
These are only the main areas of the menu of course. Along with a more friendly interface, there’s another big change: the FABUI COLIBRI features three languages. English, italian, german. What about the others? Ask the community: having a big group of users around the world means that if FABtotum does not make it, someone else can. The Team will then review it and get it available for everyone.

jog colibri

 

A free spirit
The FABtotum remains an open-source for the greatest of its parts. FABUI COLIBRI has a dedicated area for the custom heads and plug-ins. Since the beginning of the company’s life, community creations have always been welcomed. With the introduction of the Head Development Kit the Team offered a new support hardware side. FABUI COLIBRI adds the chance to easily feature any DIY tool. The users who can develop additional parts will just need to set everything up and get the most out of their creation(s). FABUI COLIBRI adds a simplified tool that will open up to a preset list of plugins, such as the one for the Laser Head recently released, but as well leave space for ideas and suggestions from the world.
Just as for the languages, there are still many sides of the platform that can be enhanced and the Team is more than happy to receive feedbacks from the community.

 

3, 2, 1, GO!
The FABUI COLIBRI, also known as FABUI 1.0, is ready to be downloaded and tried. After a first round of feedbacks, it will then pop up as update for everyone. As said, it is a major change but will still work on every existing unit.
The FABtotum is a multipurpose device and FABUI COLIBRI is of course intended to work only with it. Every function available today – 3D printing, CNC milling, 3D scanning and Laser engraving – will benefit of improvements.

 

How to install it on your FABtotum:

FABUI COLIBRI is the first Operating System in the world completely developed for 3D printing. Completely developed by the FABteam, it will make everything fast and simple.
Here below you’ll find the steps to follow to install it on the FABtotum: compatible with every unit, it is built-in for new devices (starting from March 2017).

1. Download the latest image available:
http://update.fabtotum.com/colibri/armhf/images/sdcard_latest.zip
The file will be automatically saved on your computer as a zipped folder. Should your computer not recognize it, give it a try anyway.
2. Format an SD card (any kind/size will do):
make sure to use a FAT32 File System and label it as “Boot”.
3. Unzip the file you downloaded at step 1 making sure that:
a) the destination you select is the formatted SD;
b) no folder is created. The content of the .zip should be pasted directly in the main directory;
c) once done, you should see three folders (“bundles”, “earlyboot” and “overlays”) plus a series of files;
d) once done, you should see that the files just weight around 150mb.

folders_FABUI_Colibri_1.0

4. Insert the SD into the slot of the FABtotum:
a) when you do this, of course, the unit must be turned off;
b) if it’s the first time you open the electronic panel, make sure to firstly take the screw off from the bottom right. The remaining three points are magnets. This is valid for unit delivered until Jan 2017. Newer units will have screws on all the 4 points.
5. Connect to your FABtotum via Ethernet cable just as you did on the very first time.
6. Turn on your FABtotum:
you should hear a couple of “beeps” and lights will start blinking. They should stop in a minute more or less. If this does not happen, files might not be correctly copied on the SD. First, try to repeat operations. If this still does not solve, contact us via ticket system.
7. Get the blue lights:
when FABUI COLIBRI is ready to start its booting, leds will turn to a stable, electric blue.
8. Open your preferred browser and go to page 169.254.1.2:
a) first boot will take up to 1 minute: you’ll just need to follow the instructions on the screen and wait for all the files to correctly upload.
b) second setup will need you to fill in your details: register again with your email and password. Please avoid using the autofill provided by some browsers at this step. All the lines must be filled and have a white background;
c) make sure to use a valid email;
d) as for the languages, feel free to select your preferred one. Some pages are still available only in english for the very first release. Updates will later translate everything.
9. Follow the wizard:
FABUI COLIBRI will guide you step-by-step through the next steps. Make sure as well to recalibrate your FABtotum, reconnect to the net and simply run all the tasks just as you did when you received the unit.

 

Nice, now that COLIBRI is on your FABtotum, feel free to share with us your feedbacks and advices. But! Please use the below link so that the messages go straight to the Dev Team.
No ticket needed, no forum post, just here:
https://github.com/FABtotum/fabui-colibri/issues

 

We once again thank every person who helped us, even just using his/hers FABtotum.

 

Keep following us,
FABteam

FABtotum releases the Laser Head

PCB Prototyping, Design and Engraving with Laser Head for FABtotum 3D Printer

We have come to a final version of the much-awaited Laser Head, the addon which will make the world’s first Personal Fabricator even more multifunctional. The new module will add laser engraving and laser cutting on top of the 3D printing, 3D scanning and 3D milling functions.

 

Easy, fast, useful
The FABtotum Laser Head just needs to be plugged onto the 3D printer’s carriage: that’s how anyone will get a laser engraver and cutter on his/her desktop. With a power of (almost) 500mW, it can engrave many materials such cardboard, wood, balsa and many more. It can even cut thin layers, mainly paper. And it can make PCBs. Oh yes.

The Laser Head will be available for purchase from today directly on FABtotum’s store and it will work on every unit ever delivered. As always, the aim is to have a machine which can constantly be updated, enlarging its potential and/or making the main hardware performing better than ever.
The software included will just make things easier: having a draw transported on the choosen material will be possible in a few clicks.

 

Precision is the word
A laser beam can draw with incredibly high precision. The cartesian axis of the FABtotum Personal Fabricator are perfect to drive the Head on the surface: the FABtotum’s software will automatically move the tool on the X and Y. This new technology will exponentially open up to different works ideas and projects. Even a simple jpeg photo can become real and reproduced on a real surface. The result will just surprise.

 

What will be the main uses of the new FABtotum addon?
The Laser Head in conjunction with the Milling Head will expand the possibilities as they’re meant to cooperate: their potentials are completely different. While the second can cut off and carve deeply any material, included woods and thin metals, the Laser Head will work better for different tasks. Here are a few examples:
1. Wood/balsa engraving: the 500mW beam is enough to mark those surfaces and with the possibilities to choose between none and 255 (but, honestly 10 are more than enough!) shades of greys it will be possible to reproduce with precision all the pictures and photos. Also, it’ll be possible to choose from different profiles to decide which final look is preferred. Of course, FABtotum’s Software will be needed in this case.
2. Paper/cardboard cutting: with the FABtotum Personal Fabricator and the Laser Head addon is easy to create many artcrafts such as foldable or pop-ups models, origamis and so on. The light beam is strong enough to both make the surface easier to be bent or to cut it in one step. With the help of FABtotum’s dedicated sofware, also, everything will be even easier thanks to the preset profiles.
3. PCBs: that’s the big deal. While the Milling Head could be used as well, there’s nothing as precise as a laser. The strong brushless motor, anyway, will still be a valid alternative and will also help to cut out the board in the desidered dimension. The Laser Head will work for both positive and negative photosensitive PCBs. In the positive ones the beam will polimerize the layer that should not be eroded by the acid. When a negative board is chosen, the beam wil then be directed on the parts taht should be eroded by acid.
This method of creating PCBs is costs and time saving. Easy, cheap and fast, is the best solution for both makers and any business that needs many prototypes.

laser_paper_cut


A dedicated software

The Laser Head will benefit of a user friendly software* completely developed by the FABteam: the pre-set profiles, the ease to upload a picture and get a GCODE done will make the user able to create in a few minutes. Whether the project is a PCB or a kirigami, the FABtotum’s software will set everything up. Of course, skilled makers will still have the chance of changing some settings or even use a different method to generate the GCODE.
The Laser Head is the perfect tool for anyone: from makers to artists, from small business to schools and education centres. The classB laser has enough power to make a lot but it can still be considered safe when properly used. Available as an addon to be purchased alone and/or bundled with the FABtotum CORE.

Get today’s limited offer!


The FABtotum CORE

FABTOTUM srl has been funded by Marco Rizzuto and Giovanni Grieco in late 2012 in Milan, Italy, where it is still based today. A year later the first model of the FABtotum Personal Fabricator has been described like the most innovative machine on the market; at the same time it become the most successfull crowdfunded product of all Europe.
The first FABtotum has been delivered in 65 countries and it counts more than a thousand units delivered.
The FABtotum has been the first to offer a multipurpose machine and to understand the important of having a device that could update itself endless times and get a mini laboratory on a desktop.
In the 2016’s Q4 the FABtotum CORE edition was officially presented during the company’s first Milestone. Between the advantages of this new model, there are a renewed Printing Head and Milling Head, a Hybrid Bed V2 and a complete new set of electronic boards. While the outside might look similar, the inside is completely revisited.
What else apart from Heads and Bed? We now have a Totumduino V2, a Raspi3 set and a Flex V2.
Want to upgrade? Contact us.

Once again, we’re happy to share with you what we’ve done so far, surely you’ll love it!

 

*The software will be free until June 2017.

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FABtotum’s community highlights: CNC milling a wood plate

3D Maker Project: Engraved Name Plate using the FABtotum Milling Head: detail

Hi all,

here we are again!
Time for a second Community Highlight has come.
As said in the previous post, we are willing to let everyone see what a FABtotum lover can do!

Today we would like to introduce you our friend Alessio Cavalieri: he is well known on the forums already, and he likes to get his name clearly written where and when he makes something new. This is why his nickname is simply alessio.cavalieri, easy right?
He did many things along the time he has been a FABtotum owner. Today we’ll see how he created an Engraved Name Plate using the Milling Head (actually he used an old Hybrid one).

cnc_milling_fabtotum_wooden_name_plate

How is it possible? Here is what he did, briefly.
The plate he used perfectly fitted in the FABtotum working area: a woodplate 200mm x 80mm. He started with some tests and tries on the designing side and finally got to the perfect version, which was then finally used as a gift. What a nice idea!
Good tip: he used a plywood that gets a nice finishing thanks to the natural texture of the different layers. Wood’s grain of the various layers will contrast between them, with a nice optical effect. Compared to a standard wood block, you’ll get a better look with no additional stress.

 

How to get a proper file? Inkscape example
Well, there are many software you can use to create a project for your FABtotum. Alessio decided for Inkscape, a free one that can be used with any OS. Just use it to write or draw.
Step by step, to get a doable object and a working file, he proceeded with writing the name, placed it on the surface and created the path. Here is how:
1. Designed the plate and placed near the origins (lower left corner): this is important if the final part is not as big as the block you start from.
2. Selected the text of the inscription and from menu: Path → Object to Path. The “Path” is what the CAM software will use as directions to move around and create.
3. Saved the design using: Save as → Plain SVG

How to create a GCODE with Makercam?
Alessio opted for Makercam, a free online tool (http://www.makercam.com/).
Before you upload your svg file, check these settings:
1. Set centimeters instead inches as default unit (if you’re fine with inches make sure to convert all the suggested values);
2. Select Edit → Edit preferences Set → DPI to 90 (suggested to import a drawing from Inkscape, set 75 for Illustrator)
Now upload your SVG and turn into a GCODE:
1. Open the plain SVG saved with Inkscape, make sure to delete any unwanted object;
2. Select the inscription/draw you want to be engrave, it must be red;
3. Select CAM → pocket operation, and add some settings:
name: writehereyourfilename
tool (mm): write here the diameter of your bit (Alessio set 1mm)
target depth (mm): set how deep you want to mill (Alessio set 2 mm)
safety height (mm): write here how much the Head should rise before spinning (Alessio set 10)
step down (mm): how deep the mill should go at each pass (Alessio set 0.25)
feedrate (mm/minute): movements speed (Alessio set 400)
plunge rate (mm/minute): (Alessio set 100).

You’ll need to set the above settings for each part of the design: to do so, simply select the part (n°2) and start again with n°3. In Alessio’s one, for example, he then needed to set screw holes and outside shape. Read the whole article he published on his blog or contact him if you want to know more!

Last part: get the GCODE saved properly:
1. Select CAM → calculate all
2. Select CAM → export gcode
3. Select all calculated toolpaths, export and save the GCODE file on PC.

As a safer procedure, check if the FABtotum will be able to get your project done. Check the outer path: is it going to fit? If yes, go for it!

Post processing the GCODE
Ok, one last step: as you will use the FABtotum, you’ll need the GCODE that Alessio set up for us (thanks!). It’s called MakerCAM2FABtotum, it’s on GitHub. It is essential to make sure that your 3D printer knows you’re going to get her something different to bite than some good PLA. It’s a Linux bash script but you can run it also in Windows. Ask him if needed!
Here is an example of what you can do:
fabtotum-cam-gcode
This will set the FABtotum’s Milling Head to spin at 12000RPM.
Ok you’re done! Now get on the FABUI, open the Object manager and proceed just as you are used to.

Final tip: add an extra layer underneath your starting block if you have cutout parts so that neither the Hybrid Bed neither your milling bit will get damaged.

milling_with_fabtotum_wood_plate

 

So, it looks like a long process and it might not be as easy as a sandcastle, but it looks great, right? Will you try yours? Do you have tips to get things done faster? We’d love to hear from you!

That’s all for this Community Highlight: thanks to Alessio.cavalieri once again, keep up the good job!

 

Keep following us,
FABteam