Today it is exactly five years ago that we launched woodFill at the 3D Print Show in London. It was our first special 3D printing filament! Let’s look back!
Our first special filament was woodFill. In our first year of existence (this was in 2013 – ancient times by now) we had a great filament, PLA/PHA, in the market and we were already looking for more filaments to be added to the portfolio. Someone asked us a very serious question: “Why don’t you make a wood filament?” We thought: “Why not?” Granted, we weren’t the first, but the filament world was still young and with our compounding partner FKuR, located in Willich, Germany, we went to work.
Elephant design: https://www.thingiverse.com/thing:257911 Both the elephant and acorn were printed on the Ultimaker 2+ with a 0.6mm nozzle and a 0.2mm layer height. Print speed was 40mm/s with 20% infill and a nozzle temperature of 210C. Part of the acorn was printed with corkFill.
True story: We produced the first test run of filament late October 2013, put it on the printer and… it worked! Flawlessly! This was mere days before we were off to the 3D Printing Show in London, early November 2013. With the few spools we had we printed a lot of examples, put them in our suitcases and off we went! (By train, it was still the olden days…)
The 3D Printing Show was an amazing experience. As luck (or mad negotiation skills) would have it, we were placed right at the entrance. As anyone who has ever printed with woodFill knows, the material really smells like wood when printing. And that was exactly what the visitors smelled when they entered the show floor.
As heard many, many times during those 3 days:
“It smells like… wood.”
“That’s because there is real wood in the filament.”
“But how did you get the smell in there?”
“Because there is real wood in the filament.”
We admit, the main component is our signature PLA/PHA, but the wood is what makes the filament truly special.
We started with two variations: woodFill Fine and woodFill Coarse. Problem was that the Coarse could only be printed with a 0.8 nozzle and sales reflected that people were not eager to switch nozzles a lot. Only after a few months we discontinued woodFill Coarse and focused entirely on woodFill Fine. But a few times every year someone informs if there are still some spools of the Coarse left.
We have literally sent out thousands of woodFill spools all over the world and it has been a solid hit with our customers, old and new. Its ease of printing (can your printer print PLA? If yes, you can print woodFill. If no, buy a new printer) has really helped, but again: the smell of wood during printing, that authentic woodshop idea has been appealing for a lot of printers. And be honest: the prints look like they have been carved from… wood.
Below are some (but not all, at all) great examples of woodFill creations:
Tony Short’s gift box. Original post: https://learn.colorfabb.com/colorfabb-gift-box/
Megafone amplifiers by AKLIH. Original post: https://learn.colorfabb.com/aklih/
Print+ headphone. Original post: https://learn.colorfabb.com/printplus/
Replicas of historic church figures. Original post: https://learn.colorfabb.com/excellence-woodfill-3d-printing/
Some printed examples on the Lulzbot Mini: https://learn.colorfabb.com/woodfill-lulzbot/
After woodFill we expanded the range with bambooFill (since discontinued) and corkFill (still available). Both great materials, but woodFill will have a special place in our portfolio as our first special filament. Don’t believe us? Read the five star reviews on our website: