BigRep Turns Up The Heat With HAGE3D Acquisition

Reinhard Festag (Managing Director, BigRep), Matthias Katschnig (CTO, HAGE3D), Sven Thate (Managing Director, BigRep), and Thomas Janics (CEO, HAGE3D) at Formnext 2023.

In our quest to offer exceptional Additive Manufacturing technology, and solutions and expand our capabilities, today marks a monumental day in the history of BigRep as we announce the acquisition of HAGE3D. This partnership signals a giant leap toward our vision of becoming a full-solution ecosystem for a range of low to high-temperature applications, offering a powerhouse of innovation and possibilities. 

The collaborative path with HAGE3D will unlock new opportunities in the industrial 3D printing landscape. Together, we offer a comprehensive portfolio of industrial 3D printers, featuring up to one cubic meter build volume and the capabilities of a wide range of high-performance, engineering-grade thermoplastic materials in low, mid, and high-temperature build chambers.

Redrawing the AM Landscape

HAGE3D, renowned for its high-temperature 3D printers and open AM platform, will empower BigRep to offer a full spectrum of low-to-high-temperature solutions. The acquisition is built on a foundation of extensive technological synergies, data-driven innovation, exceptional customer experiences, and an ambitious expansion plan, further strengthening BigRep's position in the industry and extending our market reach.

The Collabosphere, a 3D printed demonstration of the joined forces of BigRep and HAGE3D with a wide range of materials from both companies, seen here at Formnext 2023.
The Collabosphere, a 3D printed demonstration of the joined forces of BigRep and HAGE3D with a wide range of materials from both companies, seen here at Formnext 2023.

The Acquisition Disrupts Existing Possibilities

Both companies are committed to the development of intelligent FFF technology, making the production of complex, large-format functional parts accessible to manufacturers worldwide.

Dr.‐Ing. Sven Thate, Managing Director of BigRep GmbH, expressed his excitement about the merger, highlighting how it positions BigRep as the AM market continues to grow dynamically. The 3D printing world is driven by megatrends such as digitization and decentralization of manufacturing and BigRep, with the addition of HAGE3D, is well-prepared to capture this opportunity.

Dr.‐Ing. Sven Thate, Managing Director of BigRep GmbH, elaborated:

“For our worldwide customers, this acquisition makes us their local provider of open industrial AM solutions across all temperature levels, unlocking limitless material options. Together, with similar mindsets of customer-centric, data-driven innovation, we plan to form a European leader pushing the limits of what is possible with FFF.”

BigRep PRO and BigRep SHIELD
The BigRep PRO and the BigRep SHIELD

Thomas Janics, Managing Director of HAGE3D, emphasized the global growth opportunities enabled by HAGE3D's high-temperature FFF platforms expanding BigRep's material portfolio and large-format AM solutions. Complementing its current low‐temperature and energy‐conscious large format AM platforms, this will open a broad spectrum of new applications and markets.

Thomas Janics, Managing Director of HAGE3D, explained:

“With BigRep we have found a perfect partner to accelerate global growth opportunities in the industrial AM sector. While our focus was previously on the German‐speaking markets, we now can provide our products globally through BigRep´s sales network, adding Graz to the map of technology centers next to BigRep’s in Berlin, Boston, Shanghai, and Singapore. It’s a win‐win in R&D, production, and sales. We jointly look forward to an innovative future together.”

Collabosphere and team at formnext 2023

Joining Forces for Innovation

With more than 1,000 large-scale 3D printers already in operation across various industrial sectors, BigRep has earned its reputation with its expertise in large-scale Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF). The German-engineered 3D printers empower engineers, designers, and manufacturers, spanning from startups to Fortune 100 corporations, to expedite the transition from prototyping to production, ensuring their products reach the market promptly.

On the other hand, HAGE3D is an advanced engineering company with 40 years of experience in large-format, special-purpose machine building. Their state-of-the-art large-format mid- and high-temperature 3D printing systems are known for their precision and reliability. Fully assembled in Austria using industrial-quality components, these machines perform consistently across a wide range of industries and applications.

By forming an alliance with HAGE3D, BigRep is poised to expedite innovation and redefine manufacturing practices. This integration is underpinned by a fully integrated open AM business model, promising to offer users a replete solution.

As BigRep and HAGE3D come together, we will continue to push the limits of what is possible with FFF technology, accessing a world of opportunities in large-format, open additive manufacturing.

Find out more at

About the author:

Natasha Mathew <a style="color: #0077b5" href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><i class="fab fa-linkedin"></i></a>

Natasha Mathew


Natasha Mathew enjoys trying new things and one of them she’s currently obsessed with is 3D printing. Her passion for explaining complex concepts in simple terms and her knack for storytelling led her to be a writer. In her 7 years of experience, she has covered just about any topic under the sun. When she’s not carefully weighing her words, she’s reading, crafting, spinning, and adventuring. And when asked about herself, she writes in the third person.

CDM:Studio on Bringing Sharks to Life with The BigRep ONE

A shark model 3D printed on a BigRep 3D printer by CDM:Studio.

Enhancing Traditional Mold-making with Additive Manufacturing

Jason Kongchouy and his Perth-based model-making team CDM:Studio previously brought the past to life with their dinosaur recreations, commissioned for the Western Australian Museum. But there are actually creatures far older than dinosaurs: Sharks! Sharks! is also the name of the latest exhibition from the Australian Museum in Sydney, fully immersing visitors into the world of these 190-million-year-old beasts. They used CDM:Studio thanks to their expertise, experience, and excellence in bringing ancient animals to life.

Traditional clay-making approaches to creating large-scale models can be long and cumbersome. This is where the BigRep ONE provides the perfect solution, allowing for rapid prototyping and printing, significantly reducing production times. We had the chance to talk to Studio Manager and Senior Fabricator at CDM:Studio Jason Kongchouy about his project, the challenges in creating some sharks with minimal references, and the types of materials he used.

Can you start by telling me a little bit about CDM:Studio and what they focus on?

CDM:Studio is our model-making studio based in Perth, Western Australia. We fabricate things and work on creative projects that other people wouldn't necessarily know how to get their head around. We mainly service museums, builders, architects, and designers in a fabrication capacity where we use the BigRep ONE, SLA machines, and a five-axis CNC arm. This is complemented by an extensive skill-set in mold-making and model-making techniques. We're not just a 3D print place, but it's a means to an end to solve these problems for people.

"There was a lot of complicated work that we wouldn't know how to do without the BigRep ONE taking the stress off."

What problem does it solve for you? 

A big part of it involves us sculpting digitally using a 3D-modeling program named ZBrush. We're currently doing stuff with more museums at the moment, which is all driven by 3D printing and making those parts one-to-one scale. We use all manner of technology at our disposal to make finished objects because the customer is not buying 3D-printed things. For us, printing is a step in our pipeline. We talked about similar models in the special effects industry before the interview. That used to be all clay and fiberglass, involving months of work. Now it's been replaced with a single 3D modeler and a machine that works 24/7 and takes all that physical strain off us. And in our industry, there is a lot of physical strain, which just exhausts you and creative output can fall as a project goes on. It drops after week six. But with a 3D file, whatever we slice and send to the BigRep, that's exactly what comes out. I think the museum likes that as well. A lot of what we do has to be approved. So we can send the 3D file to the scientists, they can look at it, and they can send it to experts to check it all over the world.


CDM: Studio

Is it easier to design a shark than a dinosaur? Because sharks, of course, are still around... 

Yes, absolutely, but each still have their own challenges to navigate. All the sharks that we made are native to that part of Australia, so they had samples, teeth, and photographs. However, one of the interesting challenges is that no one takes a photo of a shark at a perfect angle so to digitally model them requires a good understanding of anatomy to get the correct proportions. It's hard to get the perfect shape. One of the models in the exhibition is a prehistorical predecessor of sharks called the Helicoprion. We only found a sawtooth mouth fossil, but our current model is where the science is with that creature. There's also a shark that lives deep in the ocean where there are only incredibly limited photos of it in the world, so our reference was a bit scarce, but it was still exciting to realize that as a physical model.

"We're not just a 3D printing service, but a means to an end solving problems for our customers."

How much time do you save using 3D printing instead of traditional clay modeling? 

If nothing else was happening, you could print a shark, like the Great White or the Helicoprion, in about six weeks. From a business perspective, you would need a four to five-month window to do the same from a traditional clay-based pipeline. Having the printer frees us up to solve other problems on the projects and lets us focus our model-making skills on parts that are coming off the machine: gluing them together, sanding the surfaces, and covering them in epoxy. There was a lot of complicated work that would take significantly longer without the 3D printer taking the stress off. It helps us streamline and work much more efficiently.

Big Rep B

What material do you use to print and why? 

For this project, we use BigRep PRO HT. It was recommended to us for its high temperature resistance as it doesn't melt or go soft as easily as PLA. We know that after the exhibition finishes in Sydney, it could tour America or potentially Europe so hopefully, you'll see it one day. These will be traveling across the ocean or be left in super hot places like Arizona, so we needed something very durable like PRO HT. We also reinforced them with epoxy resin and fiberglass because people might touch them in the exhibition.

"These are going to be traveling across the ocean or left in super hot places like Arizona, so we needed something very durable and temperature-resistant like PRO HT."

Any final words about the BigRep ONE and ideas for the future?

For us, it's a really useful tool. I think capability-wise, the ONE is perfect for us. And we look forward to even more interesting projects that the BigRep enables us to service.

CDM Studio

Interested in what the BigRep ONE can do for your business? Learn more about large-scale printing here.

Natasha Mathew

Natasha Mathew

Your Questions Answered – 3D Printing Webinar Q&As

Picture of 3D printing experts brainstorming about their next architectural project

Our recent webinar ‘How to Revolutionize Your Architecture and Construction Business with 3D Printed Formwork’ was an exciting opportunity for us to connect with other 3D printing, construction and architecture enthusiasts. We had a great group of attendees there on the line asking questions of our webinar hosts, Jörg Petri and Tobias Wallisser. Due to limited time, Petri and Wallisser were not able to answer all questions on the day, so we contacted each participant with answers to their questions afterwards.

Many of the questions were very topical and great opportunities to explain some more context behind the scenes of BigRep and NOWlab projects, and Petri’s view of construction in the future with additive manufacturing. So, we decided to publish the answers here below!

Remember, you can easily watch the webinar for free here.

Can you go over the purpose and type of sensors you are embedding? Are you embedding them in the concrete or the plastic part?

The sensors were embedded in the concrete using a 3D-printed protection ring. We used capacitive sensor technology, so the closer you get with your hand, the stronger the signal. The sensor itself can be printed as well, as we did in another project: The Modular Wall.

Discover our Industrial Use Cases

Can you address cost of 3D printing vs. milling at this scale? We have found machining to be a lot cheaper.

To do a proper calculation, you have to look at the whole process chain. As print times are increasing, this calculation is no longer valid anyway. One of the clear advantages of 3D printing the formwork is less material waste. If you are milling, you will always use a massive block of a low-quality material like styrofoam, the waste for which cannot be easily recycled. After on-site use, the casting element is declared as toxic waste that has to be disposed of at high cost to the producer. In addition to this, you generally have to cover the milled part with epoxy to achieve the necessary strength.

The advantage of 3D printing over milling is that you only use the material you need to form the concrete, and you can print using high-quality polymers that are recyclable. If the strength is sufficient, you can print PLA as a biopolymer – you do not need to recycle it, as it is biodegradable. It is also possible to produce undercuts with flexible materials like a TPU-based filament (Pro FLEX) or a water-soluble PVA.

For each company, the cost and time saved used 3D printing will vary. However, we have found that many customers manage to significantly reduce their time to market. Milling can be cheap, but then can also take up to
several weeks longer than 3D printing molds, for example. So, the saving in terms of resources, material and competitive advantage are substantial. Here is a video providing some examples of time and cost savings that some of our customers have experienced.

Furthermore, the advantage of 3D printing is that it can fit into the production process – it does not have to replace it all together. We find that sometimes customers use traditional milling methods for some parts, while they use 3D printing technology at other stages of the production chain.

Can you also address direct 3D printing of concrete without molds vs with molds?

As mentioned briefly in the webinar, both technologies will play their part on the future building site. The current resolutions for 3D printing do not allow for the production of a visible concrete wall with the necessary surface quality demands.

Furthermore, speed will be an issue. If you reduce the printing resolution,it will be too slow and thus the advantages of using 3D printing are somewhat diminished.

The issue of reinforcement of 3D printed concrete walls is still waiting be solved. That is the advantage of the molding – we are tapping into an existing method and simply changing it slightly. This way, we retain the standards and methods used on-site with in-building pipes, establishing reinforcement, etc. Eventually, this technology and requisite methods will have been developed, but for now, it’s a good start: we’re focused on how replace or optimize some parts in the process chain.

What are the UV properties of BigRep materials? Have you done any testing for outdoor end-use applications?

We are moving through this process currently, to put our latest materials through new tests. We are using modified PLA, which resists temperatures up to 115 degrees Celsius. This is enough for the concrete, which would likely be exposed to the heat from sunlight. Our material development continues, and we will be working on new ones to withstand high temperatures and retain their strength and surface quality. Stay tuned for the end of the year when we have a big announcement surrounding this topic!

Can you develop on formworks recycling process?

We are in the process of testing this right now, to understand the best ways to clean the prints, ensure the safety of any toxic materials etc. So, there is no firm guideline for recycling yet, but it certainly is an important factor in the construction process, as 3D printing moves forward to become an important part of the process.

Brian Lilley 3D Prints Ecological Solutions: Insights from a BigRep Innovation Award Jury Member

Joris Laarman Lab series based on the Diamond Chair 2014

Nova Scotia-based architect Brian Lilley is fascinated by how architecture, ecology, computation and art weave together to create solutions for communities. Now calling Halifax home, the architecture professor has honed his craft in cities such as London and Berlin, and since beginning to teach fulltime has had a focus on the potential of 3D printing. When he first began lecturing at Dalhousie University, Brian was responsible for forming a rapid prototyping lab with laser cutters, CNC milling, and depositional printers. He has worked on many collaborative projects with digital makers and thinkers across North America and Europe, one of which eventually resulted in a prototype ceramic printer.

As a jury member for the BigRep Innovation Award, we asked Brian more about his work background and for his take on integration of computation and 3D printing into design – specifically, furniture design.

Could you please tell us a bit about your background and experience as a designer?

My formative experience in Design was in London, at the Architectural Association, where exceptional projects are the expectation. Computation was just coming into play. My Tutors, Nigel Coates and Daniel Weil, both had young design firms that specialized in furniture and smaller-scale architecture.

Then, working in Berlin with sauerbruch hutton architekten, we employed a sophisticated colour sensibility meshed together with a progressive set of environmental strategies. My major project was the GSW headquarters building, including furnishing for the gardens, restaurants, and conference rooms. The use of computation as a design tool really began with forays into physical simulation (with Arup Engineers), augmented reality, and animation.

Most recently I have been working with a group named 'Narratives in Space and Time' on a series of projects related to the 100th anniversary of the Halifax Explosion. A collaborative approach resulted in an iPhone app called 'Drifts' meant to encourage story-sharing, and the 'Pyschogeographer's Table', a milled topographic tabletop that incorporates both augmented reality projections above and real physical artifacts in drawers below. Another project for the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic has focused on a digital-material-craft reproduction of a key artifact; a panel from the RMA Titanic's first-class lounge area.

Detail from the Psychogeographer's Table, 2017
Detail from the Psychogeographer's Table, 2017

You reference the Joris Laarman Lab as a key inspiration. What specifically about their approach to digital technologies and furniture design do you recommend for aspiring student designers?

Joris Laarman works in a clever way that stimulates design ideas across a range of possibilities involving character, material and production. Fabrication technologies are queried in a way that cross-pollinate with cultural expression and design constraint. For example in an iterative design series, the 'Diamond Chair' (2014), it is materially re-imagined as a magnesium mesh, a walnut maze pattern, and ultimately as a set of puzzle pieces that require assembly. His 'Soft Gradient Chair' exploits postural flexibility with a thermoplastic polyurethane mesh. A further development, the 'Adaption Chair', fuses copper plating onto a 3D-printed polyamide form. His work has been hailed as a masterpiece of digital design by the Cooper Hewitt Museum in New York.

Given the potential of large format 3D printing what do you see as the major impact for designers as it relates to structure, design and ergonomics?

From my experience, three things spring to mind: firstly, the possibilities for exploration of form and character that (perhaps) need to be tempered by concerns with materiality + elegance. Secondly, the exploration of a 'Monolithic' sculptural approach and/or the consideration of the joint detail – in allowing combination with other materials or the potential flexibility of moving parts. Thirdly, in combination with smaller prototypes, the ability to simulate a design and test aspects of both structure and ergonomics in an iterative way.

As an educator and designer, what news sources, blogs or publications do you devour for inspiration and industry news?

Certain designers and artists, for example Ross Lovegrove, Olafur Eliasson and Mark Goulthorpe, have always piqued my interest, especially in relation to architecture. The digital design communities that I value include ACADIA and Smart Geometries, for the integration of scholarship, computation and making. Social media input is sometimes useful (and sometimes not!), such as Instagram, for exposure to new ideas.

Learn about Brian Lilley’s fellow jury member Lindsay Lawson and her approach to creating art using 3D printing technology. Read here an interview with two other BigRep Innovation Award jury members, Amir Fattal and Gregor Ash, about their approach to designing furniture for 3D printing. Full competition details, including the entry form, can be found here.


Brian Lilley, Dalhousie School of Architecture. BigRep Innovation Award Judge

Connect with Brian on Linkedin HERE.

BigRep Innovation Award’s Lindsay Lawson: Bending the Rules of 3D Printing

To create something truly original, sometimes you must throw the rulebook out the window. Berlin-based artist Lindsay Lawson knows all about challenging the boundaries of what is possible, especially when it comes to technology – in fact, it’s an essential facet of her work creating sculpture and other artworks for 3D printing. Lindsay has had her works exhibited extensively across Europe and the United States, where she is originally from. When she is not exhibiting in cities like Vienna, Los Angeles, London or Rome, Lindsay works with BigRep on special projects that challenge its large-scale printers to develop interesting and complex 3D-printed objects.

It was Lindsay’s experience raising artistic works from the 3D print bed, fusing form and function, that made her a clear choice for the jury in the BigRep Innovation Award’s open call to students in Canada. As part of the four-person jury, Lindsay will help decide the ultimate winner of a Canada-wide competition, with a $3,000 cash prize, for the most innovative design of a 3D-printed chair. Following a public vote, a select number of entrants’ designs will be presented to the jury members, who will all be looking for originality, strong understanding of 3D printing principles, aesthetic innovation and structural integrity.

We sat down with Lindsay to find out how she approaches 3D printing in her work, and get her tips for competition entrants.

BigRep: Could you please tell us a bit about how and why you developed your expertise in 3D printing as an artist? 

Lindsay Lawson: My artistic practice is centered around sculpture and video. While my initial foray into 3D modelling was animation, I soon wanted to translate those skills into 3D printed sculptures. Any type of art-making is somehow affected by the tools and materials one chooses to use. With 3D printing the process is how to turn a virtual form into a physical object, and that opens up many new paths to creating something interesting.

BR: With your use of 3D printing technology in your work, how do you balance form + aesthetic with function + structure? What are the challenges you encounter in striking this balance?

LL: The key is to design objects that are particularly suited for additive manufacturing, otherwise it’s like eating soup with a fork. I’m all about printing fast and light so I like to design objects that require no support with minimal infill and few perimeters. Often this means bending some rules of 3D printing – for example, sometimes I like to over-extrude so that I get a thicker wall on a single perimeter print rather than making it double perimeter, therefore cutting the print time in half. But if you’re going to break some rules it’s crucial to design intelligently for the technology you’re using, rather than working against it.

I particularly like to work with some of our more challenging 3D printer materials like transparent PETG, wood filament, flexible TPU. By “challenging” I mean that these materials may not print certain geometries as well as standard materials like PLA. I recently designed some light fixtures that were printed with transparent PETG because the material has a beautiful, silver luster when it refracts light. That project required that I first consider the limitations of FFF in addition to the printability of PETG to inform the functional design of the structure. For me, aesthetic decisions always come last.

How to Submit Your Design

BR: Do you have any words of advice to any students for whom the Innovation Award is their first official design award submission?

LL: If you want to 3D print an object, there is no point in designing something beautiful that can’t be printed. My biggest advice for Innovation Award submissions would be to understand how FFF works and then use the constraints of the technology as a starting point for inspiration.

BR: Which news sources, blogs or publications do you devour for inspiration and industry news?

LL: Since my background is in art, I pay a lot of attention to contemporary art publications and exhibitions, but for design inspiration I like to look at Dezeen and designboom. There are many innovators here at BigRep, so I get a lot of industry news shared from curious colleagues.

Read more here from two other BigRep Innovation Award jury members about their approach to designing furniture for 3D printing. Full competition details, including the entry form, can be found here.


Lindsay Lawson is an artist and a 3D printing specialist, NOWLab @ BigRep

Big Inspiration: Marco Mattia Cristofori on Furniture Design and the Terra Stool

The Terra Stool, a model of furniture design

With a deadline of 11 February, creative young Canadians have just under a month left to submit their innovative 3D-printed chair designs for the BigRep Innovation Award. Over the final weeks we will be interviewing three inspirational design professionals, all 3D printing experts, to spark the creativity and guide the efforts of our competitors on the way towards the finish line.

For the first in the series we sat down with Marco Mattia Cristofori, Product Designer at BigRep, to talk about his latest design, the Terra Stool, which is printed on a BigRep ONE. Marco explains how he developed this intriguing, head-turning piece and gives some handy hints on how best to approach the process of furniture design for production on a BigRep large-format printer.

Could you tell us a bit about your background and experience as a designer?

As an architect who decided to focus on smaller-scale designs, working as a Product Designer at BigRep has opened up new creative possibilities for me. When I started here large 3D prints seemed complex and time consuming to produce, but I discovered that the reality is very different. On our printers you can produce literally whatever you want, only your creativity is the limit and the day after you make a design, you have a prototype. The extra options the printers give me inspire me to move in new directions.

Regarding my background, I’m originally from Italy, and during my formation process I had the chance to live in Spain, the UK, Turkey and before moving to Germany. I worked for two years in an architecture studio based in Istanbul, where I was involved in projects on different scales – from urban planning to furniture design. I discovered that what fascinates me most is designing items for individual use in specific situations, like for sleeping, eating or, in this case, sitting!

How did you approach designing this stool for large-scale 3D printing?

The inspiration for this design was the Ocke Stool which is a really impressive design by Beatrice Müller, a former Product Designer at BigRep. I wanted to re-work the concept in a way which let me experiment with new design ideas and explore what the BigRep machine is capable of. To direct myself I set two constraints: to avoid using any support structure, and to exploit the flexibility of the ‘layer-by-layer’ process of FFF by making every single layer in the design different. An early decision after setting these rules was to have the seat rooted to the print bed which would make avoiding using support structure easier.

The Terra Stool, a model of furniture design
The Terra Stool was designed by Marco Mattia Cristofori. Each 3D-printed layer of the stool has a unique shape

Your re-designed stool draws upon natural design/bionic principles? What’s the thinking behind this? 

I decided to use a bionic shape partly because organic shapes tend to vary constantly in their cross-section so this would fit my aim to avoid layer repetition. The beautiful thing is that this typology of design helps to improving the stool’s strength. The gradual curvature of the supporting sections enables this by giving a load applied to the top of the stool an easy path through the object. The sharp angles on rectilinear designs can be weak points which are less able to deal with such forces.

An engineer at BigRep, Paul Worms, showed me some studies and images explaining these bionic principles. If you just look at the way the trunks of trees emerge from the earth, and branches emerge from the trunk, you clearly see this idea of the gradual curvature of structural sections.

What material did you use for this design? What features our Canadian entrants look for when choosing a material?

I chose our most-used 3D printer filament PLA, which allowed a nice polished finish to the seat top when it is printed flat on the print bed. It also meant that I had to limit overhang angles in the design to a maximum of 60 degrees in order to meet my rule of not adding any support material.

I suggest Innovation Award competitors think about other options. For example, it can be nice to use dual extrusion to combine two materials for a new effect, as in [sg_popup id="44" event="click"]this table[/sg_popup] BigRep produced in 2017. In that design we used on of our transparent materials which can produce interesting outcomes, especially if you experiment with infill pattern. Our PRO HT filament is a high-performance ABS-like material, its tensile and impact strength properties open up additional design possibilities.


As a designer, what news sources, blogs or publications do you devour for inspiration and industry news?

I still keep up to date with new developments in architectural design, I really like ArchDaily. I find that I can be inspired by ideas expressed in architectural language, and it influences my product designs. I also really like Dezeen which is more design-focused. And then there is iGNANT! I discovered this around six years ago and it’s a super nice, simple blog that covers different creative media. They’re from Berlin and posted this piece on our colleagues at NOWlab, which is actually about some nature-inspired furniture.

What advice would you give a Canadian student preparing a designs for the February 11 BigRep Innovation Award deadline?

I could talk for hours on this … but let me just say three things. The more research you can do into ideas which inspire you and into 3D printing technology the more likely you can create a really strong, boundary-pushing concept. Also, I would definitely recommend you set some rules for your design and make some quick decisions early on to take some pressure off the process and give a clear direction to your creativity. And the most important thing? Manage your time from there so that you have time to produce a design that expresses your unique perspective, in plenty of time for submission before 11 February!

More information about the Innovation Award, including entry requirements and student resources, can be found HERE.


Marco Mattia Cristofori is architect and 3D printing specialist at BigRep GmbH

Connect with Marco on Linkedin HERE.

Launching the BigRep Innovation Award – Open Call to Canadian Students

After much work across months and time zones, we are thrilled to launch the inaugural BigRep Innovation Award in cooperation with our partner NOVACAD Systems. The Award is an open call for Canadian students to submit an innovative 3D printed chair design, in pursuit of seeing their creation made a reality on the BigRep ONE and a C$3,000 cash prize. The winner will be decided by our four-person expert jury, following a public vote.
We looked to two of our jury panelists to provide some inspiration and direction to potential entrants on designing for 3D printing: NOVACAD Systems’ Gregor Ash and BigRep’s very own Amir Fattal. They shared their insights on how large-format 3D printers are changing the rules of furniture design and production, and offered some wise advice on harnessing the potential of the technology.

Amir,do you have any tips for young designers as they approach designing a chair for 3D printing, i.e. finding inspiration for structure, colors, materials?


The Ocke Stool. Take a seat, and get inspired

Amir Fattal: First, I would really try to understand the technology - what its advantages and disadvantages are - and then I would try to work to its strengths. In the case of FFF, a key advantage is that you can realize complex geometric structures with internal features as intricate as those on the outside.
Sometimes building a support structure is a method of making it possible to print at a certain angle. If you can avoid that need with a clever bit of design or, if needed, build the support structure in a smart way, this can help increase the quality of the final print. I draw design inspiration from a number of design sites, such as de zeen and Design Boom.

How do you see large format 3D printing changing manufacturing and design?
Gregor Ash: Well, just the name entails the fact that designers are now able to produce their designs at near full or full scale, which is a huge game changer. They've been relegated in the past to smaller models and having to do testing on a very small limited scale. So, this combined with some incredible things happening with materials and that fact that designers are able not only just to prototype, but also to produce finished products, will change the way people conceive and produce their ideas.


Another demonstration of the diversity of forms which can be 3D printed

Do you have any tips for the latter stages of the design process? What do entrants need to make sure they get done/avoid falling into/focus on as the submission deadline closes in?
Gregor Ash: We're looking for design and function as well – the whole idea of ergonomics and comfort. So, having a sense of how conceptual design from an aesthetic point of view connects to the concepts of materiality, in terms of how the item is constructed overall and going to hold together, is essential.

What is the most exciting design/object you have seen printed recently on a BigRep ONE? 
Amir Fattal: One of my favorite designs is the Ocke Stool that was created in-house by our designer Beatrice Mueller. This is a design which utilizes the steepest angle you can print in FFF without using a support structure. The design grows from the print bed upwards in a very similar way to how a natural structure like a tree or leaf develops. The print emerges directly from the machine as a complete chair, needing no other post-processing.


The Ocke Stool: clearly thought out and executed

More information about the Innovation Award, including entry requirements and student resources, can be found HERE.

Seven Questions With BigRep CEO René Gurka

Source: Fabbaloo

We spoke with BigRep CEO René Gurka, whose company produces the gigantic BigRep ONE 3D printer, to find out how the company has changed and where it’s headed.

Fabbaloo: BigRep was just a small startup only a few years ago. Now things are a bit different. What happened?

René Gurka: We definitely started at the right time with the right idea. We were THE pioneer for large scale affordable printing at the beginning of 2014 and still are the segment leader in this market today.

Since our launch, we have gone a long way. Six weeks after building the first prototype in January 2014, we took the prototype to the 3D Print Show in New York and people went crazy: We got hundreds of inquiries both from resellers as well as media from all over the world after the show which helped a lot to make BigRep known in the 3D printing community.

But of course, this alone does not make a company successful. After getting all the attention, we had to start building the company. We recruited great people and great investors – all with a background and knowledge in hardware start ups, so we could grow from 3 to 50 people in only 15 months.

I have to say that at BigRep, the execution of creating a prosperous company went very well and I am convinced that the right execution is sometimes more important than the idea itself. Making the right decision is definitely not easy and it will always take a few bad ones to find the right path for you. My tip for founders is: Get help before making too many mistakes in the early days.

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