Tag Archives: i.materialise

MIT Students Use 3D Printing to Duplicate Secure Schlage Keys

3D Printing Keys MIT

“Pirating keys is becoming like pirating movies.” — MIT Student David Lawrence

Two students at MIT have demonstrated how 3D printing can be used to duplicate some of the most secure keys in the industry. David Lawrence, 20, and Eric Van Albert, 21, demonstrated their technique in a presentation at security industry conference Defcon 21 in Las Vegas this past weekend.

The team used a flatbed scanner in combination with a 3D model template to develop an exact digital copy of a high security Schlage Primus key. This file, they explained, can be 3D printed in a material durable enough to open locks, for example, titanium from i.Materialise.

“If we show that mechanical locks are vulnerable to key duplication just by having a handful of numbers you can download off the internet, hopefully they ‘ll be phased out more quickly… Either that or make 3D printers illegal,” said Van Albert in an interview with Forbes.

Lawrence added, “In the past if you wanted a Primus key, you had to go through Schlage. Now you just need the information contained in the key, and somewhere to 3D-print it.  You can take a high security ‘non-duplicatable’ key and basically take it to a virtual hardware store to get it copied.”

3D Printing Keys Schlage MIT

Read their full interview at Forbes.

Lawrence has also made available the 3D model templates on his website.

3D Printing Sparks Innovations in Art – MGX by Materialise at Inside 3D Printing Chicago

MGX Mammoth Stereolithography 3D Printing

MGX by Materialise Leads the Charge in 3D Printing and Artist Collaboration

At the Inside 3D Printing conference in ChicagoJoris Debo talked about a brave new art world pioneered by Materialise with their Mammoth Stereolithography 3D printing technology. Materialise is a Belgian based company that is involved in additive manufacturing (3D printing) in many industries like software development, rapid fit (automotive & aerospace), biomedical (CT & MRI scans) & orthodics among others. Debo is the Creative Director at MGX, which is the consumer goods division for Materialise and he is especially passionate about using 3D printing technology to “create objects that are both art and functional.”

MGX has become a company that closely works together with artists to come up with new pieces that would be very difficult and extremely labor intensive to make without 3D technology.  Joris noted, “When I arrived in the company eight years ago, there were two people that were not engineers. Over the years, we’ve commissioned people, like Patrick Jouin, for a new era of digital aesthetics.”

MGX is in multiple collaborations with artists and fashion designers like Iris Van Herpen for example. Van Herpen has revolutionized fashion with mesmerizing futuristic designs that push the boundaries of art and fashion. In fact, a lot of her pieces are found in museums after they hit the runway. Debo notes how like Van Herpen, the “people that make these dresses are the new craftsmen.”

3D printing also allows the combination of traditional art with very high end furniture that matches the art. Joris pointed out how if you have a Jackson Pollock in your home and you want something to match the Jackson Pollock, an artist can custom create a piece or multiple pieces of furniture to match the Jackson Pollock using MGX’s 3D printing technology. Debo further noted how it’s “not only about 3D printing but about craftsmen that can finish the pieces.” This applies to pieces of furnitures, sculptures and even art replicas like museums have begun to use recently.

i.Materialise Root Chair 3D Printing MGX

The Root Chair by Sulan Kolatan and William MacDonald

Joris discussed how art pieces or historical artifacts are sometimes too fragile to travel the world and thus insurance companies will not cover their repair if broken. Moreover, some artifacts, like King Tut’s mummy for example, are irreplaceable and is too risky to move regardless of the financial cost. To show King Tut’s mummy in New York City, National Geographic partnered with MGX in order to make a perfect replica that allowed people to feel they were actually looking at the real King Tut. These kinds of partnerships make it clear as to why museums like the Smithsonian is investing in 3D printing technologies that allow for their rare pieces from fossils to sculptures to be replicated.  In sum, 3D printing technology is not only revolutionizing the industrial world, but it is already changing the aesthetics and culture around us, from clothing to furniture to historical artifacts and art pieces.


Authored by On 3D Printing contributor Rodrigo Garza Zorrilla, technology entrepreneur and advisor.

3D Printed Lightclip Lets You Signal Batman With Your iPhone and More

3D Printed Lightclip Batman Signal

3D Printed Lightclip Turns Your iPhone into a Batman Signal, or a Ninja Ghost, and More

This is a review of Lightclip, one of the coolest and most elegantly-designed 3D printed products we’ve come across. We also interview the designer.

(For full disclosure, the designers behind Lightclip sent us a complimentary product to try out.)

The Lightclip is a 3D printed accessory for the iPhone that becomes illuminated when you turn on a flashlight app. A variety of designs were created by Lab02 and are available for sale at Shapeways for $12 to $17 each.

Our Impression of Lightclip

The design is quite a step up from what you would normally expect from 3D printing. Instead of rigid ABS plastic, the Lightclips are 3D printed in White Strong and Flexible (Nylon). As Shapeways said in their own review:

This material is very strong (obviously), affordable and an excellent light diffuser. The Lightclip emits a beautiful ambient light, which is evenly distributed and very easy on the eyes. Use it as a nightlight, at a camping trip or when in need of a superhero!

We loved the different types of Lightclips. Included in the Shapeways store are a traditional light bulb, a ghost, a ninja ghost, and a Batman spotlight. Each one fit perfectly to capture all of the light from the iPhone flash; no leakage. See the gallery below for examples.

Fun for kids. Though not a toy, kids were very attracted to the Lightclip, turning the flashlight on and off repeatedly to see the Lightclip glow.

In summary, the Lightclip is really more about fun and fashion than function, but it’s worth the $15 price point as a conversation piece and perhaps a night light on occasion.

Interview with the Designer of Lightclip

We interviewed Dinos Costanti, the designer of Lightclip. The transcript of our interview is below.

On 3D Printing: Tell us about your organization and your history in 3D printing.

Costanti: My name is Dinos Costanti and i’m a software developer and 3D modeler. Vangelis Hadjiloizou is a painter and the ex Creative Director of the largest advertising agency in Cyprus. We started working together as freelance industrial designers in 2011. Right from the beginning we wanted a way to prototype our designs. We had access to a nice CNC machine locally, but we needed something better. That’s how we started using Shapeways and i.materialise.

We were very impressed with the capabilities of the modern 3D printers, especially with the EOS SLS machines. We even used them for a small production run of 110 small mushrooms that we designed as a giveaway for one of our customers. That was the final proof for us that 3D printers can be used for small scale manufacturing.

So we launched Lab02.org as a place to show and promote our personal designs. That is probably the dream of every designer; A way to make and sell the products that no one is willing to fund and manufacture! And as 3D printing becomes more popular, we’d love to feature the designs of other Cypriot designers.

Over the past 3 years we’ve gained a lot from the 3D printing community. And it is thanks to it that we can now afford our own 3D printer. As our way of giving something back we’ve made the Lightclip available under a Creative Commons license.  This way anyone can download, modify, and print his or her own for free!

On 3D Printing: The designs you have made are very intricate and probably more elegant than what most people would expect when they think of 3D printing. Was it difficult to design?

Costanti: Not at all! The Lightclip went from initial idea to sketching, modeling and prototyping in about 10 working days. That included 5 days for Shapeways to print and ship the prototype.

I think that the 3D design software companies are starting to realize the need to address the amateur or rather the non-engineering crowd. We mainly use Moi3D, a NURBS modeler created by Michael Gibson, the original developer of Rhino. This is probably the easiest and friendliest NURBS modeler on the market and a perfect fit for designing for 3D printing.

On 3D Printing: How do you see these types of 3D printed goods growing in adoption?

Costanti: The production of 3D printed goods is going to explode. As more 3D printers are becoming available, prices are being pushed down. And as 3D printing materials become cheaper we are coming to a point, maybe in a year or so, where 3D printing will be a viable and cost effective solution for small scale manufacturing. Especially so for the 100 – 3000 units production runs which, using traditional injection molding, are currently in kind of a “no man’s land”.  That is mainly due to high molding costs which demand a major investment with traditional methods, but are not required at all with 3D printing.

That is going to have a profound impact on the variety and complexity of available products as more and more designers can simply self-publish their products using their own 3D printer or a 3D printing service.

On 3D Printing: How has your experience with Shapeways been?

Costanti: Our experience with Shapeways has been amazing right from the beginning. Their engineers are very knowledgeable and they were instrumental in our quest to master the basics of designing for 3D printing. Also, their printing times are constantly improving. They will usually ship a lot sooner than the date they quote!

There is little doubt in my mind that these 3D printing services are the prototypes for the factories of the future.

On 3D Printing: Any other creative ideas your working on at the moment?

Costanti: We’ve had another very successful product with i.materialise, the Dragonbite grip which was designed for printing in stainless steel. It is currently the feature of a design competition at i.materialise.

We are also working on the initial sketches of our new project, a water pipe, designed to be printed in ceramic. This is the one material we haven’t used so far and we are very excited about it.  I’m sure that it will present its own challenges but it is something we wanted to try for a long time. We hope it will be available in a month or so.


Thanks for sharing the Lightclip with us!

i.Materialise Launches 3D Printing Design Challenge for Ceramics

i.Materialise 3D Printing Ceramics Challenge

3D Printing Design Ceramics Challenge from i.Materialise

3D printing marketplace i.Materialise has launched its latest 3D printing design challenge. This challenge asks for innovative ideas for ceramics.

Running April 8 to May 23, 2013, the competition asks entrants to submit a design on i.Materialise and the winner will get a free 3D print of their design.

Here are more details about the i.Materialise 3D Printing Ceramics Challenge.

Spring is finally entering our doors  and we are in desperate need for more colors in our lives! So we’re ready to launch our first ceramics challenge where you can choose between nine vibrant colors. Are you ready?

For this competition, your challenge is to use 3D printing to create a product in ceramics. We give you carte blanche, so you can design anything you want: from tiles to vases, from jewelry to kitchen ware.

Surprise us by your creativity!

On the 23th of May the jury will select 1 winning design. The winner will receive his or her 3D print.

This challenge is open to all designers, professional and amateur, regardless of sex, age or nationality.

Submissions will be accepted up to 23:59 May 23th Central European Time, 2013.

There is no limit on the number of entries per contestant. To enter, you need to upload your design(s) here and provide a clear explanation (under ‘desciption’) in at least 50 words.

The i.materialise team will vote upon the entries.

Participants need to upload their file here. You can find more information about the file formats in our FAQs under ‘website’. The material for this challenge is ceramics.

There are limits on the size of the design:

Bounding box ceramics: 15 cm x 15 cm x 15 cm


i.Materialise is also hosting an Accessories Challenge, looking for accessories that are inspired by birds.

Fashion Week and 3D Printing: Stratasys and Shapeways Hit the Runway

Wearable Stratasys and Materialise 3D Printed Pieces Hit Paris Fashion Week at Iris van Herpen Show

3D printing has been used to develop some new interesting fashion designs. At the 3D Print Show in London last October, there was a live catwalk featuring 3D printed wearables.

With Paris and New York Fashion Week in season, 3D printing is again on display.

In Paris, a Dutch designer exhibited 3D printed collections made on a Stratasys 3D printer:

Dutch designer van Herpen’s eleven-piece collection featured two 3D printed ensembles, including an elaborate skirt and cape created in collaboration with artist, architect, designer and professor Neri Oxman from MIT’s* Media Lab, and 3D printed by Stratasys. An intricate dress was also designed in collaboration with Austrian architect Julia Koerner, currently lecturer at UCLA Los Angeles, and 3D printed by Materialise, marking the second piece created together with Koerner and the ninth with Materialise.

The 3D printed skirt and cape were produced using Stratasys’ unique Objet Connex multi-material 3D printing technology, which allows a variety of material properties to be printed in a single build. This allowed both hard and soft materials to be incorporated within the design, crucial to the movement and texture of the piece. “The ability to vary softness and elasticity inspired us to design a “second skin” for the body acting as armor-in-motion; in this way we were able to design not only the garment’s form but also its motion,” explains Oxman. “The incredible possibilities afforded by these new technologies allowed us to reinterpret the tradition of couture as “tech-couture” where delicate hand-made embroidery and needlework is replaced by code.”

Van Herpen adds, “I feel it’s important that fashion can be about much more than consumerism, but also about new beginnings and self-expression, so my work very much comes from abstract ideas and using new techniques, not the re-invention of old ideas. I find the process of 3D printing fascinating because I believe it will only be a matter of time before we see the clothing we wear today produced with this technology, and it’s because it’s such a different way of manufacturing, adding layer-by-layer, it will be a great source of inspiration for new ideas.”

Learn more about Objet 3D printers at the company’s website.

In New York, designers will be sitting down with Shapeways to discuss Fashion in 3D.

Shapeways, a 3D printing design studio and marketplace that spoke at our Startup Showcase last fall, will host an interactive design experience and lectures on the future of fabrication at Manhattan’s Ace Hotel to explore how digital technology can revolutionize fashion.

Designers Michael Schmidt (famous for Lady Gaga’s bubble dress), Anna Sheffield, and Chris Habana will work with computer-aided design modelers to help guests create custom products using 3D printing on Feb. 9, in the hotel lobby. The all-day event will culminate with the unveiling of a 3D printed dress designed by Schmidt and Francis Bitonti.

At the Decoded Fashion Forum at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, Shapeways’ Director of Marketing Carine Carmy will chat with designer Kimberly Ovitz about 3D printing on the runway. Ovitz will debut her first 3D printed collection for AW13, one of the few times a designer collection has incorporated 3D printing.