3D Printing
Enclosures

Microcluster

A 3D Printer Enclosure System

Microcluster Halfstack

$2,358 raised

of $500 goal

471% Funded!
Not Available
Oct 31 2018
funded on

Recent Updates

You'll be notified about news and stock updates for this project.

Meet the Microcluster

The Microcluster kit is the easiest way to build a fitting home for your hard working 3D printers. It is both affordable and highly modular, guaranteeing that you’ll be able to build a 3D printer enclosure that meets your needs without breaking the bank.

The Microcluster kit system transforms a commonly available shelf into a purpose built, smart enclosure system for 2-6 desktop 3D printers. The modular upgrade system makes it easy to add lights, smart wireless control, or even a photo booth setup for professional product photography.

If your current “enclosure” includes cardboard or bubblewrap, it’s time for an upgrade…

The Microcluster kit might be right for you if:

While there are lots of printer enclosures currently on the market, you’re pretty much on your own if you want to build a multiple printer enclosure system. The Microcluster makes it easy to transform a standard shelving unit into the perfect enclosure system to suit your needs.

Microcluster Halfstack

Halfstack!

Use Cases

Here are just a few of the instances where the Microcluster kit could be a life saver:

Home users

With the controlled environment of the Microcluster, you can be confident that your prints will turn out perfectly every time, even if you move your printing operation to the basement or garage. Add the OctoPi kit and tie it into your home network to easily monitor your prints from any web connected device.

3D printing professionals

As anyone with multiple 3D printers knows, most "desktop" printers aren’t really desktop sized anymore once you need to run more than one at once. Even just two or three printers can fill up all available deskspace and can cause unnecessary distractions. Instead of constantly swapping out printers or crowding your work area, give your hard working printers a space of their own.

Commercial Production

Started 3D printing prototypes or production parts in-house? Focus your efforts and produce stronger, more efficient parts with the Microcluster. The different Microcluster kits allow you to easily specify and build the perfect Microcluster for your specific needs so you can focus on developing your own products.

Features & Specifications

What’s in the Microcluster Panel kit?

Note: Shelving Not Included: The panel kit is designed to make it easy to enclose a common, commercially available steel shelving unit. The kits were designed around the Edasl(R) UR-245WGB 48"W x 24"L x 72"H shelf which can be found in most hardware stores or on Amazon. Other shelves of the same size should work but may need modifications to the printed parts.

Modular upgrades:

Printed Part kit

Microcluster printed parts.

Printed parts.

Photo Booth kit

Microcluster Photo Booth Kit.

Mmmmmmmm... Photo Booth Kit.

Light Kit

Octoprint Kit

Comparisons

Make / ModelCost# of PrintersLights?Photo Booth add-on?Wireless control?
Microcluster Half Stack $249 USD1-2 Optional (+$99) Optional (+$225) Optional(+$199)
Microcluster Full Stack $349 USD3-6 Optional (+$99) Optional (+$225) Optional(+$199)
Printed Solid Enclosure$150-$275 USD1No No No
3D Print Clean Enclosure$1395-$1595 USD1Optional with Pro Version (+$1,300 to $1,400) No Optional with Pro Version (+$1,300 to $1,400)
Microcluster Full Stack with Lights

Full Stack with Lights

Manufacturing Plan

The Microcluster will be manufactured at our micro-factory in Sheridan, Colorado. All custom plastic parts will be produced in house using our own Microcluster based print farm, mainly utilizing 0.8 and 1.2mm nozzles for maximum strength, durability and throughput. We’ll do our best to share time-lapses and live streams of the process, it’s really pretty awesome! The wiring pass-throughs and mounting holes on the side panels will be die cut in house using printed jigs, and all other components are mostly commodity parts that will be purchased in bulk.

Shipping & Fulfillment

Similar to the Twoolhead campaign, the Microcluster rewards will ship from our warehouse in Sheridan, Colorado. Shipping within the US is included in the purchase price, with a premium added for international orders added to reflect the difference in cost to ship.

For this campaign, the bundles will ship via FedEx Freight; the bundles are only available for backers in the continental US.

Risks & Challenges

Like our Twoolhead campaign, the Microcluster campaign is intentionally very safe. All custom parts will be produced in house using our own Microcluster based print farm, and all other parts are commonly available off the shelf from multiple vendors. There are also no minimum quantities for any of the components of the microcluster kits, so we’ll be able to ship even if the pool of early adopters is small.

That being said, there are always unexpected hurdles to get past when manufacturing a new, innovative product. We will communicate any production issues with backers and do everything we can to deliver to all backers on time.

What is the Colorado Printing Project?

The Colorado Printing Project is an independent design group focusing on leveraging the strengths of 3D printing for small batch production.

Prior to starting the Colorado Printing Project, I (BAM) spent four and a half years in Loveland, CO as an engineer at Aleph Objects, Inc. There, I completely fell in love with the freedom of design and low iteration cost that production printing offered.

I started the Colorado Printing Project with the mission of speeding up the development of open source production printing technology. At the end of 2017, I successfully funded and fulfilled all campaign pledges for the Twoolhead, a parallel printing accessory for the LulzBot TAZ printers.

For the production of the Twoolhead, I built up a small enclosure for my cluster of 3D printers which turned out really nicely, so I’ve decided to turn it into a kit to make it easy for others to get the benefits of an enclosed printing space. For this project I was lucky enough to have help and insight from another former LulzBotier, Patrick. Patrick has been a long-time friend and collaborator and was a beta tester for the Twoolhead, helping out with the firmware development and initial refining.

In the Press

Hackster News

"If you’re serious about building a 3D printer farm, Microcluster looks like an affordable and effective solution."

Ask a Question

Produced by Colorado Printing Project in Sheridan, Colorado, USA.

Sold and shipped by Crowd Supply.

Support Us!

Thanks for helping make the Microcluster a reality! You will be rewarded with good karma, regular backer updates, and your name will be included in the source material as a part of the team that helped bring this open source technology to life.

$5

Microcluster Half Stack Kit

This panel kit makes it easy to enclose half of a standard steel shelf, providing a lovely home for 1-4 printers depending on their size. Magnets embedded in the lightweight plastic panels make assembly a snap and the clear PETG doors allow clear viewing of the print while keeping the printing environment perfectly stable. Includes smoke alarm to mount in the Microcluster for peace of mind regardless of what type of printer you're running. Does not include printed parts or shelf.

$249 $8 US Shipping / $18 Worldwide

Microcluster Full Stack Kit

This panel kit makes it easy to enclose half of a standard steel shelf, providing a lovely home for 3-6 printers depending on their size. Magnets embedded in the lightweight plastic panels make assembly a snap and the clear PETG doors allow clear viewing of the print while keeping the printing environment perfectly stable. Includes smoke alarm to mount in the Microcluster for peace of mind regardless of what type of printer you're running. Does not include printed parts or shelf.

$349 $8 US Shipping / $18 Worldwide
Microcluster printed parts.

Printed Part Kit - Edsal HD version

This Printed Part kit contains the parts to mount the sliding doors of the Half Stack panel kit. This Kit saves you the time and effort of printing the door sliders for the Microcluster kit, which can be over 100+ print hours depending on the machine you use! These will be printed in house with the COPrintPro developed Ludicroustruder with 1.2mm nozzles for maximum strength and durability. For the Full Stack version of the Microcluster, 2 Printed Part Kits are needed. This version has only been confirmed to fit the Edsal(R) and Muscle Rack(R) Heavy Duty Storage Units. For all other shelves, easily modifiable design files will be available for you to print your own parts.

$99 $8 US Shipping / $18 Worldwide

Octoprint kit

Easy to install and set up, the Octopanel allows you to set up wireless control of your printers in minutes and is designed to work with any desktop printer. The included logitech webcam allows constant monitoring of printing as well as the ability to take time-lapses of individual prints. The Octoprint system allows authorized users to access the printers, upload print jobs and monitor them remotely from any web connected device. A portion of every Octopanel purchase will go towards funding Octoprint, the open source project making this technology affordable and accessible.

$199 $8 US Shipping / $18 Worldwide

Photo Booth kit

Easy to set up, the Photo Booth kit allows you to set up a professional quality photo booth as part of your Microcluster setup. Included are (2) 50W photo lights with height adjustable stands and reflectors for bright and even lighting, as well as diffuser filters to soften harsh shadows. Also includes a 48" x 100 foot roll of thick white kraft paper and hanging hardware so you can take photos with a clean, even background.

$225 $8 US Shipping / $18 Worldwide

Light Kit

Easily installs in 5 minutes, kit contains all parts required to quickly and securely hang light. Bright 3000 lumen LED light bar guarantees better visibility of prints, low energy consumption and long lifetime. One kit needed per shelf you want lit up. This upgrade allows for clear webcam monitoring even in a dark room!

$99 $8 US Shipping / $18 Worldwide

Maker Bundle

This is a complete turnkey version of my personal favorite Microcluster configuration. This bundle includes 1 Edsal HD shelf, 1 Half Stack panel kit, 1 printed part set, 1 Photo Booth and 1 Light kit add-on. It's the perfect size for 1 TAZ, 2 LulzBot(R) minis or up to 4 smaller printers, and ships to you on a pallet to get you up and running in no time. The Colorado Printing Project is an official reseller of industry leading LulzBot(R) printers, save money by bundling with brand new machines covered by one of the best warranties and technical support teams in the industry. Bundles only available to backers within the continental US (sorry!).

$950 Free US Shipping / Not Available Outside US

Production Bundle

All the bells, all the whistles. This a complete turnkey version of the epic parallel printing Microcluster configuraton that we use in house for ultra fast batch printing. This bundle contains 1 Full Stack kit, 1 Edsal(R) Heavy Duty shelf, 3 Light Kits, 3 Octoprint kits and 2 printed part kits. Designed to be bundled with 3 TAZ 6 Printers with Twoolheads or 6 Minis, this bundle is a turnkey solution for any business looking to bring production in house. Outfitted with the highest output Twoolheads, this Microcluster configuration has an output of up to 13kg (30lb) of custom plastic parts PER DAY. The Colorado Printing Project is an official reseller of industry leading LulzBot(R) printers, so you can save money by bundling with brand new machines covered by one of the best warranties and technical support teams in the industry. Bundle only available to backers within the continental US (sorry!).

$1,999 Free US Shipping / Not Available Outside US

About the Team

Colorado Printing Project

Sheridan, Colorado, USA  ·  coloradoprintingproject.org

The Colorado Printing Project is an open source skunkworks and microfactory based in the Denver metro area of Colorado, USA.

Brent MacKenzie

Thing-doer #1

Patricky Bobby

Thing-doer #2

See Also

Subscribe to the Crowd Supply newsletter, highlighting the latest creators and projects