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Euromold 2010


Euromold 2010 is a World Fair for Moldmaking and Tooling, Design and Application Development taking place in Frankfurt, Germany on 1 – 4 December 2010. more details here http://www.euromold.com/index.php?id=51&l=1

Bits from Bytes Ltd and 3D Systems corporation have very kindly asked for me and a small group of students to attend the event where I will be giving presentations about how RapMan and BfB3000 printers can be used in schools. The students will be actind as “education ambassadors” talking to visitors about their work and building a RapMan 3.1 machine. We are hoping to be able to blog our activities (depending on internet access / wifi and the 1001 other technical difficulties we have yet to overcome)… so hopefully you will be able to track our progress here http://bfbeducation.posterous.com/ 

So, even if we can’t manage to get the blog running and you happen to be in the Frankfurt area please drop in to see us and have a chat. Bits from Bytes will be in Hall 11.0 stand E26

A nice 3D print by a student


I just thought you guys would like to see this print… and this time I can take very little credit for it 

One of my D&T Product Design students is designing and making a flat pack moveable kitchen unit/trolley (a bit like an Ikea style butchers block on wheels)… as it is intended to be flat-packed he is designing the fixtures and fittings for it too… to get started he decided that for the first fitting he would produce would be the bottom corner bracket that holds the sides together and attaches the casters (wheels)- and being a little uncertain about the strength and size required he based his experimental part on an existing design that he "borrowed" from a conventional kitchen unit at home. (I do wonder if his parents know)

As you can see the ABS print (the red one in case you were wondering  ) came out really well and as a test piece was very successful…. now he has started on his own designs that are more specific to his unit/trolley.

It is worth noting that this is a photo of the part straight off the machine with no post processing, cleaning up or even photo re-touching!!!


Students visit Bits from Bytes

Last week a group of Design and Technology students visited the Bits from Bytes Headquarters in Clevedon, UK. The visit was intended to allow them to see first-hand different production methods in action. It is probably best for me to allow one of them to describe their visit….


In our recent visit to Bits from Bytes, we learned various things about the way in which their business works and how they operate. We were taken on a tour of the Bits from Bytes production facility, in an order identical to that of the resources used, what is meant by this is that we started where Bits from Bytes get there raw materials delivered, we then moved on to where the plastic is cut and shaped by laser cutters and finally finished where the products are finished and boxed ready for delivery.

The factory itself is divided into two parts, one side was dedicated to creating the RapMan kits for customers to purchase and build the machine themselves. A great investment for those who would like the experience of building it themselves and also would like to save money, as the kits cost less than the pre-built machines. The second area was dedicated to making BfB3000 machines for customers to buy and install without having to build or configure any parts, although these are charged at a higher price.

It was good to see the differences between the two methods of production and to be able to see one-off, batch production and production lines all operating in the same place.

Learning about manufacturing and production systems in a real life situation was much better than just researching or reading about it and should help us with our A ‘Level Design and Technology exam. Thank you to everyone at Bits from Bytes for allowing us to visit and making us so welcome.

Ollie Elson


… Couldn’t put it better myself!

But I would just like to add an “official” thank you from The Design & Technology Department at Clevedon School.




Bloodhound SSC and RapMan/BfB3000


This resource is about using Bloodhound SSC as a context for designing and making using RapMan and BfB3000 printers.

Bloodhound SSC is the name of a project aiming to break the land speed record with a car powered by a jet engine and a rocket.

It is designed to reach approximately 1,000 miles per hour (1,609 km/h). It is being developed and built with the intention of breaking the land speed record by the largest ever margin.

If funding is obtained the construction should be complete by the end of 2011 and the record attempts may happen in late 2011 early 2012.

The resource contains suggested projects about designing model cars (even rocket or CO2  or balloon powered); printing a 3D map of the desert where the record attempt will take place; engine turbines; and ergonomic controls. There are cross references to other projects where more information and detail can be found.

I would like to thank Bloodhound SSC for the use of their images and ideas in producing this resource http://www.bloodhoundssc.com/



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