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ProtoParadigm Blog

  • Website Update

    It’s been quiet around the ProtoParadigm blog these days, too quiet. But we’re happy to say that we’ve been hard at work behind the scenes. We’ve got some new products on the way, some more posts in the works, and...

    It’s been a work in progress for some time, but we’ve finally finished the move to our new e-commerce software. We are very excited to be making this change, and we hope you will be too as we were able to address a number of customer complaints and requests. You asked, we listened.

    • Use a Credit Card or PayPal! Many enjoy the speed and convenience of PayPal, and now you can enjoy it too with the addition of PayPal to our accepted methods of payment.
    • Non-US customers, we are able to accept international orders again! Hello World.
    • You can now filter products by their characteristics, such as color, material, weight, etc. As we add more products (and boy are there some doozies in the works) searching for exactly what you want will be easier than ever.
    • Better access to your order information - log in to track your packages, see your order status, and more.
    • Streamlined shopping cart means an easier checkout process with better feedback, and an end to the bugs in our old shopping cart.

    Those with an account on the old site will need to create a new account (sorry). Also, if you see anything that looks a bit off, or find anything on the site that is clearly broken, please let us know so we can get right to fixing it.

    We’ve also just published a 3D Printer Filament Buyer’s Guide to help new users along as they get started. If you’re brand new to 3D printing, give this a read.

    Keep letting us know what kind of content you’d like to see, and what products you’d like us to carry.

  • 3D Printer Filament Buyer's Guide

    This is intended to be a very basic Personal 3D Printer filament buyer’s guide for new 3D Printer users.  Every single point presented here is worth a lengthy post, but this should serve as a top-level summary that might help you determine what plastic filaments will best suit your needs.

    Additionally, see What Plastic Filament does my 3D Printer Use.

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  • What to do with a 3D Printer: Make Garden Tools

    The gardening season is here and it's time to get out and work the dirt.  Even very traditional home tasks and pastimes like gardening can benefit from a 3D Printer.

    I've got a few garden accessories that I've designed for myself to use in the garden this season.

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  • 3mm PLA is Back in Stock! (New 3mm Green PLA & 3mm Blue ABS)

    Well after a very long wait and a very lost driver (hundreds of miles lost). We are stocked once again with 3mm PLA. Further, we are adding two new products; 3mm Green PLA and 3mm Blue ABS.

  • Thing-O-Matic MK7 PLA Set-Up and Troubleshooting (Likely MK8)

    While a vast improvement over previous extruders, the MK7 can still prove challenging for those wanting to get started with PLA. However, while PLA is more picky in the settings surrounding how it is printed, its benefits over other printing materials make getting over the calibration hurdle well worth it. It has little to no smell when extruded, can be used without a heated bed, undergoes less warping and cracking and can produce highly detailed features and surfaces when used in conjunction with a cooling fan. So read on and with any luck you'll be happily printing with it too. While following applies directly to those using an MK7 on a Thing-O-Matic using skeinforge 35, those using other machines and configurations should find some of this information useful. It is also likely that the following instructions will apply to those who own a Replicator as the MK8 appears to be very similar to the MK7. Be sure to have a look at the 'Tips & Troubleshooting' at the end. Continue reading

  • Did we mention we have Red and Green in 3mm ABS?

    We didn't mention the new 3mm colors? Oh, well for your printing pleasure we are happy to now offer Red 3mm ABS and Green 3mm ABS. Go crazy.

    3mm ABS 1kg Green Mean Green
    3mm ABS 1kg Red No Rhyme Red
  • Investigating Flash Breaker Tape

    We're always working to find better ways to do things.  We feel it's important to report on the things that don't work out as well as on the successes.

    A while back we decided to try using Flash Breaker Tape as a print surface material, seeing if it had any advantages over Polyimide Tape (also known by the trademarked name Kapton).  Flash Breaker Tape is used in the composite manufacturing and repair industry, particularly in aerospace applications.  Ours came from Atacs Products. It is a thin-film polyester tape that uses a silicone adhesive just as Polyimide Tape does.  In short, we found that it does not perform as well as Polyimide Tape for print-bed surfacing, though it did work in one application.

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  • What to do with a 3D Printer: Be a Valentine Hero!

    This year for Valentines, my son's day-care put on a little party for the kids and each child was asked to bring valentines for the their class-mates. Normally this would have meant a walk down the retail trenches of our nearest big chain department store for something cheap and unoriginal; but this year, with a 3D Printer, it meant something much more special.

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  • Red, Blue, and Green are looking good to me!

    We're feeling especially primary today with our new stock of Red, Blue and Green 1.75mm ABS. Grab some quick and print that selectable-any-color-peristence-of-vision-pin-wheel.

    1.75mm ABS 1kg Red It's Red Ted
    1.75mm ABS 1kg Blue and Blue Sue
    1.75mm ABS 1kg Green don't forget Green... Gene?

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  • What to do with a 3D Printer: Video Production Field Use

    Earlier this week Mechan Media was in Seattle on a production and had our Mosaic on loan to see what applications they had for it.  As it turns out, it saved the shoot!

    Continue reading

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