10 Things to Love About the 3Doodler Start

Introducing the 3Doodler Start, the world’s first truly kid-safe 3D printing pen! We love the newest addition to the 3Doodler family. Simple to use, the 3Doodler Start makes creating easy, engaging, and fun! Here’s 10 reasons why we think you’ll love the Start too…

1. Totally Touchable

The 3Doodler Start has no exposed hot parts, which means no risks of burnt fingers! Not only that, our amazing Eco-Plastic melts at super low temperatures, so it comes out of the pen at a totally touchable temperature.

2. Wonderfully Wireless

With the 3Doodler Start, you can Doodle anywhere, anytime! Charge it up and get 45-60 minutes of Doodle-tastic wireless use.

3. Ready to Reboot

Make your old toys last longer with Doodled repairs made with the 3Doodler Start. Doodle a new head or costume for an action figure, a ramp for toy cars to jump, or create entire scenes and accessories for imaginative fun!

4. Helpfully Hands-on

The 3Doodler Start’s incredible Eco-Plastic is easy to mold and shape before it hardens into a permanent form. Get your Doodles looking exactly how you want them by fine tuning with your fingertips!

5. Without Waste

Our Eco-Plastic is entirely environmentally friendly (hence the name!) and will decompose in your back yard or in any household compost! Mother Earth, you’re welcome!

6. So, So Simple

The 3Doodler Start has one temperature, one speed setting, and one button. Simply turn it on, insert a strand, and start Doodling!

7. Engaging Education

With the hands-on help of the 3Doodler Start, kids can develop the skills needed for design, planning, building, and spatial understanding!

8. DoodleBlocks for Building

Kids will love using the new 3Doodler Start DoodleBlocks to create beautiful, accurate Doodles across a range of themes.

9. Extending Exploration

One plastic strand of our Eco-Plastic can make Doodles up to 10 times its original length. How many Doodles can you make?

10. Undeniably Unique

In case you missed it, the 3Doodler Start is the first 3D printing pen that’s truly safe for kids aged 8+.

The 3Doodler Start is available now from our online store along with a full range of DoodleBlock kits, accessories and Eco-Plastics.

World’s First Solid Gold Doodles

It all started with heart. “My friend Michael Husted sent us a heart made with the 3Doodler and asked me ‘David, do you think this will cast?’ The result of that piece is what launched us into the exploration of using the 3Doodler for designing more jewelry,” says David Cunningham.

David owns New York-based DGC Jewellers, and has had incredible success using the 3Doodler in an unexpected way: casting Doodles and turning them into pieces of fine jewelry.

After experimenting with his friend’s Doodled heart, David found it was not only possible to make casts of Doodles, but the results were organic forms that opened up a new realm of possibilities.

"The challenge wasn’t in how we were going to make it, but rather what we were going to design with it."

“There was a relatively short learning curve in learning how to control the pen,” says David. “But the challenge wasn’t in how we were going to make it, but rather what we were going to design with it.”

For his first piece, David decided to try a pendant design. “It was a kind of work in progress,” he says. “I used the triangle tip and printed almost like I was decorating a cake with frosting. This gave me a shape that I really liked, but I didn’t know what to do with it.”

As David experimented with the shapes and forms, the end result began to take shape. “I printed the swirl wire around it and cast it, but it wasn’t until I was looking at the cast piece that I decided to antique the pattern, and set an onyx bead at the bottom that completed the look,” he says.

"We tried to focus on what we could make with the 3Doodler that would be difficult or impossible using traditional methods."

Working with brightly colored plastic made it challenging to visualize how the final piece would look once cast with metal. “We were surprised on several occasions how different the pieces looked after they were cast, compared to how they looked in green, yellow, pink, and blue plastic!” David says.

What David was really looking for when using the 3Doodler was innovation. “We really tried to focus on what we could make with the 3Doodler that would be difficult or impossible to make using traditional methods of jewelry manufacturing,” he explains.

Of course creating the actual jewelry relies on traditional methods of casting. “When we have the piece ready for casting we invest it [surround it in plaster], then burn it out overnight, and then cast it the next day,” David says. “So this is a two-day process.”

Investment casting is a process all on its own, and David works with jeweler Rob Oakley to bring it all together. “We attach wax sticks (called sprues) to the pieces and attach the sprue to a large wax base called a button,” David explains. “The button is attached to a rubber base that a steel cylinder (called a flask) will fit into.”

Once everything is set into place, plaster is poured into the flask around the Doodled piece. Then when the plaster is set, it can go into the burnout oven, where it’s heated overnight up to 1550° Fahrenheit.

“When the burnout schedule is complete there is a negative cavity in the plaster in the shape of the Doodled piece, and the flask is held at 1000°F for casting,” says David. A special casting machine is used to inject molten metal into the space left in the plaster mold, taking the form left from the Doodle. “The cast piece then has to have the sprues cut off and cleaned up, sandblasted, tumbled, polished, and stones set if the design requires it.”

How long the finishing touches take depends on the complexity of the piece. “With most of these pieces we cast several of them at once and spent three to four days from start to finish to complete a group of them,” David says.

While David was using a blend of old techniques and new technology, using a new tool meant it was important to find a distinct look that made the pieces unique. “We made a few pieces that we liked, but we decided that they could be easily made with metal wire or wax wire,” says David. “So we went back to the drawing board with them.”

What ended up making distinguishing the Doodled pieces ended up being the flaws in the process. “The organic look and variation of thick and thin, and even some of the little mistakes add to the interest and appeal of what we make with the 3Doodler.”

From Fantasy to Reality with Cornelia Kuglmeier

Cornelia Kuglmeier had planned every part of her final submission for the 2015 Doodle of the Year Award—or so she thought. She had drafted sketches, and carefully Doodled the two halves of a delicately detailed seahorse. “But when finally putting the two parts together,” she says, “I realized they did not match.”

Cornelia’s complicated designs and unusual techniques help her create stunning Doodled forms and sculptures, but it certainly doesn’t make things easy. “There’s a lot of trial and error,” she admits.

One of the techniques Cornelia often uses is baking Doodled pieces to give them a glassy surface, an idea she had after a trip to Venice, Italy. “I quite liked the look of Murano glass in Venice and was wondering if PLA could melt in layers too,” she says. “I mean, it melts at 160°-180°C, that’s a temperature my oven achieves.” After some trial and error, Cornelia refined her baking technique to create glassy flowers and decorative pieces.

When it came time to submit entries for the 2015 3Doodler Awards, she knew she wanted to use the same effect on her seahorse. “I first had to Doodle every single plate on its body as a flat piece, and had only a rough guess at what angle they’d be assembled after baking them,” she says. “After baking the pieces I Doodled all the plates and the head together in order to create the two halves of the body, making a nice hollow form.”

"When I finally held it in my hands I was so happy, seeing my imagination take form at last."But when trying to fit the two pieces together, Cornelia discovered they didn’t fit together the way she had intended. “Every plate was unique and had shaped itself a bit differently when baking,” she explains. “The completed halves of the Seahorse did not have identical curvy lines, with one side being curvier than the other.”

In order to fix the pieces and have them fit together properly, Cornelia used a hot air gun to adjust and bend each shape. “I quite like to use a hot air gun on PLA,” she says. “The heat allows the plastic to bend quickly into shape; you can even heat it up until it gets glossy across its surface.”

Working carefully with the seahorse, she had to re-shape each individual plate to fit correctly. “I had to try hard not to destroy any of the pieces either by breaking or overheating them,” she says. “The work was so sophisticated that I was almost exasperated while making it!”

But in the end, it was all worth the effort. “When I finally held it in my hands I was so happy, seeing my imagination take form at last,” she says. She was even prouder when her seahorse was announced as the 2015 Doodle of the Year.

When it comes to her Doodles, Cornelia is methodical in her approach. “Of course I make a draft of every 3Doodled figure,” she explains. “I usually draw the figure from one side view, roughly in its original size. After this, I divide the figure into its parts and plan out each one so that I can first create a skeleton of it, and then subsequently cover up the skeleton.”

This method allows Cornelia to create a frame to Doodle over. “In this way, the figures are all hollow,” she says. And while she uses references for some of her animals and flowers, she says her fantasy forms are all from her own imagination. “I don’t ever use references when making the more fantastical creatures.”

Cornelia feels like she was always meant to Doodle. “I’ve been drawing since childhood and I always loved neat detail,” she says. “So I guess, I’ve been practicing for my entire life.”

See more of Cornelia’s work on Twitter, Instagram, and her Facebook Page.