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The MyMiniFactory Blog

3DPI & Protolabs X MyMiniFactory Design Competition

With less than a month until submissions close for the 3DPI & Protolabs 2019 3D Design Competition, it’s time you started finishing up your designs to submit!


Your model could be the next Official Trophy for the 3D Printing Industry Awards 2019! Can you think of a better way to get noticed by the best in the industry? Plus, you have the opportunity to win your very own Ultimaker 3!


Before this terrific competition ends, we wanted to delve deeper into what this competition can mean for you, as well as your future as 3D designer and maker. Find out what an amazing opportunity entering the 3DPI Awards Competition can be.



What's In It For You?

The winning designer will be awarded a brand new Ultimaker 3. One of the highest quality commercial 3D printers available right now. The Ultimaker 3 is priced at 3495 USD, so you can imagine the professional grade craftsmanship that’s gone into it, definitely a valuable prize.


The printer has a range of rewarding features, including the duel extrusion, and swappable print cores; of which there are versions specifically for build materials and support materials, making it easier to separate the two once printing is complete. Wireless control is also a big plus, allowing you to export your model without having to constantly plug things in and out.

Even though this is a machine for home use, and it can fit easily on your desk, it has a much larger print volume than most other printers and can print at temperatures of up to 280 degrees celsius, that’s 536 degrees fahrenheit! Meaning, by winning, you’ll be able to manufacture larger more professional quality models, which you can share with the world.


The Ultimaker 3 has many helpful functions that you'd never know you needed before you known about them. It helps reduce the risk of failed prints, by including LED lights in the print cores that shine if there are any problems. The plate has simple clamps that allow you to easily remove and reinstall it with no hassle. Finally, it makes layer shifting a thing of the past, with Active Levelling operation. This means with only a little calibration from you, the printer will use sensors to automatically level its print bed


And that’s only the tip of the iceberg for what this fabulous printer can achieve. Plus, as this design competition is all about designing a trophy for the 3DPI Awards, the winning design will be printed by 3DPI and Protolabs to be presented as the official trophy and distributed to the winners in each category on ceremony night. Beyond an honor, this is a  chance to innovate on your creativity and design something truly special.



What Are The 3DPI Awards All About?

The 3D Printing Industry Awards are an annual ceremony that are hosted by the global media company dedicated to 3D printing and 3D scanning: 3D Printing Industry. The award ceremony, now in its 3rd year, aims to celebrate and acknowledge those making a significant contribution to the world of 3D printing.

The mission has been true since the first year they started, as 3DPI announced in their first year “We want you to let us know about the enterprises, materials, machines and most importantly the people who make 3D printing so exciting and interesting.”

The awards have highlighted companies creating 3D printed artefacts and groundbreaking new printers for business and commercial use. With categories like, “Creative Use of 3D Printing” & “Community Advocate of the Year”, the 20 winners are a varied and exciting group of some of the most innovative and talented in the industry.

Among the winners at last years 3DPI Awards was Volkswagen Autoeuropa and their partner Ultimaker (who as you know are supplying the grand prize for this year’s design competition) Their Automotive ApplicationAward was attributed due to the incredible Volkswagen tools, fixtures and equipment that were printed using Ultimakers 3D printers. Their tools saved the company roughly 350,00 euros in one year. A demonstration of how 3D printing can be accessible, cost effective and high calibre certainly deserved the recognition.

This year, Ultimaker has 3 nominations in the 3DPI awards, Desktop FFF (Fused Filament Fabrication) 3D Printer of the Year, OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) of the year (Personal) & Software Tool of the Year.

Big industry names like this will all be receiving the trophy designed by you, as winner of this design competition! Putting your designs, and your name, quite literally into their hands. That’s how collaborating with 3DPI on this trophy design will aide you in growing your presence, name and brand within the world of 3D printing.

But its not only 3DPI collaborating on this design competition, because the trophy won't be created using the 3D printers you’re used to. It’s Protolabs partnership that will make winning this prize even sweeter!



Where Does Protolabs Fit In?

Protolabs is ‘the world’s fastest manufacturer of custom prototypes and on-demand production parts’.

The company was born out of founder Larry Lukis’ belief that injection moulded & 3D printed plastic prototypes could be produced quickly without a decrease in quality.


With manufacturing facilities (literal proto labs) in eight different countries, companies like 3D Printing Industry can utilize Protolabs services to produce prototypes or parts within a matter of days.



What Happens If My Design Is Picked?

 The goal of this competition is to outfit 3D designers, like yourself, with access to Protolabs’ state of the art additive manufacturing methods and machinery. Protolabs can 3D print in many more materials than just your standard PLA or ABS. They can use various plastics (including translucent/clear), metals and elastomers.

To create your design specifically, Protolabs will be using both SLA (Stereolithography, creating objects from a liquid resin) and MJF (Multi Jet Fusion, essentially two jets working together to fuse and smooth layers of the print) to create a more refined and professional looking product.

Take a look at last years stunning, winning design from Sruthi Venkatesh, an architectural designer who’s won many awards for her skill and passion in the field. Her design is known as Triumph Spire. She aimed to symbolise the twists and turns of life, that can get in the way of the pursuit of your dreams. The recipient of the trophy can then display that they were not stopped by these obstacles, and have achieved success.

Her design was chosen by 3DPI and Protolabs for its demonstration of the level of complexity and intricacies in its design that 3D printing can handle.

By winning this competition your design will be manufactured in the highest quality materials and processing by Protolabs.


Just like Sruthi’s was last year.


Success in these competitions proves you don’t have to be a seasoned professional to be a brilliant and innovative mind. 3D designer hobbyists like Sruthi have every much a chance of winning this momentous prize. Your win reaffirms to industries worldwide, the skills and talents of designers in the MyMiniFactory community and beyond. Allow your design to highlight the limitless possibilities of additive manufacturing. Propel yourself forward, alongside others with similar dreams, to a place where your work, and your time receive the recognition they deserve.


Your Time Is Now!

You still have time.


If you want to rise to 3D Printing Stardom with a winning Trophy design, and get your hands on that Ultimaker 3, start modeling and get ready to upload! Remember to submit your design by the 1st of May when submissions close. Make us proud.


For more details and criteria for submissions, check out the competition page here. And keep your eye on the competition section of the site because we’ve always got something going on there.


Don’t forget to vote for the winners of this year’s 3DPI Awards: VOTE NOW!



Good Luck Everybody!!