Desktop Factory Competition Winner Named

By AnnMarie Thomas


Inventables’ CEO Zach Kaplan with the Desktop Factory competition winner, Hugh Lyman. (photo courtesy of Zach Kaplan.)

As the costs of 3D printers drop, we are seeing more and more schools and informal education centers incorporating this technology into their youth programs in exciting and innovative ways. (See ‘Making It” in New York City Classrooms for an example, from our blog, of 3D printing being used in the classroom.) Thus it is always exciting to see new technologies, particularly open- source ones, which further reduce the cost of 3D printing.


Sand Table Houses


Last May, at Maker Faire Bay Area, the Desktop Factory competition was announced. This competition, a collaboration between the Kauffman Foundation, Inventables, and the Maker Education Initiative, challenged makers to create an open-source machine which can take plastic pellets and convert them into 3D-printer ready filaments– at a cost of less than $250. We are incredibly excited to share that a winning design has been announced! Inventor Hugh Lyman, a maker from Washington, has shared the plans for his Lyman Filament Extruder on Thingiverse.


Lyman extruder




Since the announcement of the winning design last week, it has been wonderful reading stories about the potential impact of this new device, and about the amazing inventor who designed it. Read more in articles from TIME, MAKE, and WIRED.


Inspired to download the plans for the Lyman extruder and build your own? We’d love to hear about it in the comments section below.










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