Doodle3D Review

Thursday morning I got envious of @3dhubs for posting the below tweet: 
I want one too! And that evening when I came home, there it was... a little brown box, slightly smaller than the AppleTV packaging... Opened it up and inside was a white box with bright colours scribbles saying Doodle3D!

Backing this on Kickstarter was a great experience: tons of feedback and an exciting product and great people. Great fun to see them at Ohm2013 afterwards as well!

In the words of Ritik:
The device is a small box which has it's own Wi-Fi and it's connected with the printer with the USB cable, and when you're connected to that Wi-Fi you can draw something and then send it to your printer so u can print from any device which has that Wi-Fi. 

How it works:

The Doodle3d works with an HTML5 app that you access by pointing a browser to http://draw.doodle3d.com/ It works on all kinds of devices from Desktops to iPhones and tablets.

Setup:

Setup is easy: you connect the box to the printer using an USB hub that comes along with it (something to do with USB1.0/USB1.1/USB2.0 stuff). You then power the box and wait till it lights up all green LEDs. Point the browser to http://draw.doodle3d.com/ (it picks up DNS calls to this and points them to the box, provided you use the DHCP-based DNS settings). Then comes the bit where you get a guided tour of the interface and then select your settings:
  • Type of printer
  • Bed size
  • Wall thickness
  • Layer height
  • Print speed
I found these 5 settings to be the most important one to get the prints coming out nice and clean. Wall thickness helps greatly in the strength of the piece and print speed is also very printer dependant (I lowered mine to 30 on the leapfrog)

Start Printing:

Ritik's impression on the setup procedure was clearly simpler:
Once it's setup it's quite easy to draw something and print it, it’s just needs to be plugged in and u can start , first u connect to the Wi-Fi then u go to your web browser and go to the link draw.doodle3d.com and u can start drawing.

Our Opinion:

I asked Ritik to praise and then be critical:

Perimeters: 

 It's nice that you can select how thick you want to print the perimeters so that you don't print thing that when you take it off the bed it breaks. And then it has some strength.

Intersecting paths: 

 The software also works with intersecting parts. If you have for example a infinity sign it would go over the sign as we would draw it. It would not do one half and then go to the next half.
Even more, it allowed for traversals where it would not print, but move to the next bit

Multiple Devices compatible: 

Once you print a objet from one of the device's you can't print from any other so there's no interference with the device's and if you print something but the connection is lost, it's okay cause it send the file to the box and then it's being send from your device anymore.
But at the same time it allows multiple devices to draw stuff and wait for the printer to come online.

Extrusion control:

... There's no such button where you can control the extrusion. So if want to change filament, you can't do it from the device. so it if they add a extrusion button that would be useful.
In fact a better printer control panel would be amazing to allow you to fine-tune the printer or home the printer and extrude filament before you print.

Everything is about Z0

When it prints, the distance between the bed and the extruder should be perfect, otherwise it would not print properly especially because it's a one perimeter print. 
Apparently the whole 3d-printing world revolves around the first print layer, so why would be doodle3d be an exception?

Import

There are 3 things I find should be added
  • Add .stl : if you could just upload an stl so you can print files that u already have.
  • Add normal shapes : It would be nicer if you get a certain amount of shapes and that you could edit them afterwards.
  • Add .svg : It would be also cool if you could just upload a .svg file and this would be a lot easier if you want accurate drawings.

Dimensions

Beyond that I would love to have some kind of indication before I print of the size of the doodle... Sometimes I draw a ring, which then prints like a bangle... Great fun, but a grid or measurement would make doodles better life up to the expectations.

DualExtrusion Doodling

Wouldn't it be great if you can print in two colours and take advantage of the dual extruders on most new printers.

Hack?

I could not help but wonder if there is a way to hack the Doodle3d to also enable you to dump gcode on the box and use it as a print-server of kinds... But more on that, if I ever get the time to dig into the device!

Conclusion:

All in all a great device to have around for workshops and parties, to quickly show people the power of 3dprinting without having to learn to model anything... A great way for smaller kids to see their creations come out of the screen and into the printer...

[Please note that this is the first post in which I am taking my son's help to slowly introduce him to blogging his own opinion on 3d printing and products... I hope you can read past the "cooler" language. If you have a product that needs a teenager's opinion, don't hesitate to contact us! Slowly I want to move out of the Editorial role and let Ritik write his own posts here!]

5 comments:

  1. Great review, love the realworld view of Ritik.

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  2. Good review. I found your page because I'm having a bit of problems getting it setup myself. I'm interested in the multiple print heads as well for the RepRap.

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    Replies
    1. The most important bit of setting up is the start and stop Gcode. This will allow you to determine your own print behaviour (I for instance only need calibration in X0 and Y0 and wanted the test extrusion to be more).

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  3. Hi there! Would you mind if I share your blog with my zynga group?
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    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No problem... You can always share! Just attribute.

      Delete