New 3D printing announcements from BCN3D, Origin and Aleph Objects

This Friday, we’re rounding up some news items that reflect both the good of the industry and its growth and a bit of the bad. On the positive side, BCN3D has restated its commitment to open source technologies with the release of 3D printer files for its Sigma R19 and Sigmax R19 and Origin has started shipping its Origin One 3D printer. The industry received some more negative news from Aleph Objects, however, which appears to be downsizing significantly to stem problems of cash flow.

BCN3D releases open source files for Sigma R19 and Sigmax R19 3D printers

Barcelona-based 3D printer manufacturer BCN3D Technologies this week released open source files for its R19 generation of 3D printers, including the Sigma R19 and Sigmax R19. Both 3D printer models were released in September 2018 and feature dual-extrusion systems and e3D optimized hotends.

BCN3D has consistently stayed true to its open source mentality, releasing files for its various 3D printer releases, including the Sigma Original in 2015 and the Sigmax Original in 2018.

The open source documentation, hosted on BCN3D GitHub repositories, covers the mechanics, electronics, firmware, software and process engineering related to the R19 3D printers. All the information has been published under the CERN Open Hardware Licence (CERN OHL) and General Public Licence v3 (GPLv3).

“This release of the SIgma R19 and Sigmax R19 source files also comes an even greater gift to the open source hardware community, this being the inclusion of the designs and information that BCN3D use to manufacture, test and assemble all aspects of the machine during production,” commented Richard Horne, aka RichRap, a pioneer of the RepRap project. “This is a step beyond just releasing the CAD design and source files. With this level of commitment to the open source hardware movement, it allows others to learn and further benefit from the R19 project and its journey from design to stable production 3D printers.”

Origin is now shipping its Origin One 3D printer

In May 2019, San Francisco 3D printing startup Origin unveiled its open AM system, the Origin One. This week, the company announced it had begun shipping its 3D printer and is already seeing high demand. According to the company, it has more than doubled its printer install base in the past six months with Global Fortune 500 customers from across the U.S. and Europe.

The Origin One 3D printer

“Shipping our first production printer, Origin One, is a huge milestone for the company,” said Chris Prucha, Co-Founder and CEO of Origin. “The tremendous customer growth and demand we’ve seen for the printer, as well as the positive reception from our open material network, is extremely gratifying and proof that we’ve created a platform that our customers need.”

In addition to launching its 3D printer shipments, Origin has also appointed a new Chief Operating Officer, Jeffrey Lee. Lee was previously a venture partner at DCM and sourced Origin’s Series A investment in November 2018.

“I’ve worked with this team for almost two years, and I’ve never been so convinced that Origin is poised to finally bring additive to mass manufacturing,” said Lee. “I’m excited to join the team and help Origin realize this vision.”

Other notable updates from the company include adding Avid and Interpro as customers of its service bureau, and improving its Origin One 3D printer with software updates.

Aleph Objects on the brink? Company lays off 91 employees

Aleph Objects Inc., the Colorado-based company behind LulzBot 3D printers, issued an announcement this week that it had consolidated its team significantly. The announcement reads:

“Aleph Objects Inc. has reduced its staff as of today. Please be assured we will continue to manufacture and sell the LulzBot Mini 2, Workhorse and Pro series of printers and will continue to service the equipment as we are negotiating new ownership opportunities. All warranties will continue to be honored and the standard one year warranty will be included with all new printer purchases.”

Grant Flaherty and Hob Wubbena with the LulzBot Mini 2

The company, which announced a European expansion in May as well as its plans to introduce a bioprinter, reportedly laid off 91 of 113 employees due to problems with cash flow.

There has been speculation recently about whether the company was shutting its doors. Though that hasn’t happened yet—as the company maintains it will continue operations and production—the future of the 3D printer manufacturer, beloved by many in the maker community, remains unclear.

Tess Boissonneault

Tess Boissonneault moved from her home of Montreal, Canada to the Netherlands in 2014 to pursue a master’s degree in Media Studies at the University of Amsterdam. It was during her time in Amsterdam that she became acquainted with 3D printing technology and began writing for a local additive manufacturing news platform. Now based in France, Tess has over two and a half years experience writing, editing and publishing additive manufacturing content with a particular interest in women working within the industry. She is an avid follower of the ever-evolving AM industry.

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