The Prudence Project

Whenever people think about 3D printing, they mostly think about desktop 3D printing. Mostly. With the Stacker, Blackbelt and other large printers the world is slowly opening up to larger size prints. But sometimes we come across a print that is just huge. Think: Almost 2 meters huge. Enter The Prudence Project by Mikrotvornica from Zagreb, Croatia, made with colorFabb PLA Economy.


 The full sized print (190cm), human for scale

Prudence is a sculpture produced for contemporary artist Abigail O’Brien from Dublin, Ireland. “Last November, the RHA (Royal Hibernian Academy)  presented Abigail O’Brien RHA, Prudence and the Game of Golf in the RHA Ashford Gallery, a photographic, sculpture and sound installation. Having completed Fortitude, The Collector, 2005 and Temperance, Oatfield Sweet Factory, 2009, Prudence is the third body of work in O’Briens series, The Temporal (Cardinal) Virtues, which are Fortitude, Temperance, Prudence, and Justice.”  

Says Marko Salopek of Mikrotvornica: “After the initial contact with Abigail and acceptance of our offer we started with the work. The request was to 3D print sculpture of a female golfer with total height of 190 cm. The STL file we were given was great but since it was produced from 3D scan there were some parts of the model that needed to be repaired and removed to give her that desired look Abigail requested. After we completed 3D model repair, we decided to build our own semi-large size 3D printer to help us 3D print this sculpture. Nikola was an architect in constructing our custom made 3D printer (400x400x350 mm – CoreXY build). Big digital 3D model was cut into 21 pieces at the most optimal places for easiest 3D printing avoiding any support. Also each individual part was optimized for easy assembly and gluing. They were sliced and 3D printed on our Modax3D Core 400 3D printer using exclusively colorFabb material.”

Test models

With PLA Economy Marko, a long-time user of colorFabb filaments, had found a great material that has proven to be very reliable with large print jobs. He continues: “To finish the physical model we used high gloss surface finish as requested by our client. Several layers of syringe putty was applied to remove any imperfections and layers in 3D print and of course lots of hand sanding after every layer. Later on we applied primer paint and finally high gloss paint varnish for the final look.”


So far they have made 3 large sculptures of Prudence and total of 15 small (30 cm in height) versions. Below is a short summary of the Prudence in numbers:

  • 21 individual parts glued together
  • total of 17.526 grams of colorFabb PLA was used (in our version 3)
  • total of 453 hours print time (in our version 3)
  • variable layer heights from 120 microns to 300 microns depending on the part of the sculpture and the version of the sculpture (big or small).

Glueing the parts together

About Mikrotvornica

Mikrotvornica is a young startup company founded in Zagreb, Croatia by Nikola Blažević and Marko Salopek. Interesting thing is that Prudence project was a main reason they started Mikrotvornica. Before the project, both of them were working on their own individual ventures in 3D printing. Working on the Prudence project made them realize they worked very well together and decided to join forces.

Now, almost a year later, they have grown into young startup with strong foundations and great potential for growth. In Croatia we started local brand named 3DPrintaj. Under that name they bring everything 3D printing related to the local market. From 3D printing services to 3D modeling, 3D printer and material shop as well as education (as elsewhere in the world, educational sector for 3D printing is growing fast in Croatia).

Regarding their international efforts, Prudence remains our biggest project so far. With that project Marko and Nikola realized there is great opportunity in 3D printing art. That is why they are now actively looking for agents across Europe to connect us with artists who are willing to work with us on their art projects. Interested? Contect them here.

Being painted

About PLA Economy

It makes sense they chose PLA Economy for their project. It is a highly popular filament used for bulk projects by many of our users… and ourselves.

PLA Economy is a fantastic PLA grade which we launched in November of 2016. Initially we released four colors: white, red, black and silver. Recently added the always popular Dark Blue, which is similar to our very own Ultra Marine Blue that we offer in our portfolio of PLA/PHA filaments.

PLA Economy offers a great value for your money. One spool consists of 2.2kg of filament for a dirt cheap price of a little over € 35 (ex VAT and shipping). It is a different grade than our range of PLA/PHA, but we guarantee the same colorFabb quality. Our filaments are readily available from our webshop. You can use the standard PLA settings if your printer has these pre-defined and these should work fine.

You can also opt for the PLA Economy Value Pack: order four spools as a value pack and receive an immediate 10% discount!

Buy PLA Economy                                      Buy PLA Economy Value Pack

PLA Economy is very well suited for the maker who needs quality at an affordable price. It is a perfect filament for large volume and small series production, made with the guaranteed colorFabb quality that we are known for.


3D Printing Day

Today is December 3rd and traditionally this date is known as 3D Printing Day. It was declared 3D Printing Day by 3D Hubs last year and this year again, so technically we can speak of a tradition.

There will be events all over the world at 3D Hubs. Check them out here. Last year we had an open house day on December 3rd which was fairly well attended. The people who visited us and toured our factory & print lab even saw an early version of the material that was to become nGen_FLEX a full 10 months before it was officially released!


Actually, as you read this our R&D team is working hard testing new materials and making sure the future of 3D printing materials is at least as exciting as it has been in the past four years.

This year we will not have an open day (no use ringing our doorbell – we will not open the door), but instead we have collected some of the coolest prints of the year. Some of them made by us, other prints made by others. We see a wide variety of awesome prints coming by every day on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and what you – our users – send us by email. This is by no means a complete list and we will highlight the most astonishing prints of the year at a later date, but we found that these astonishing showpieces deserved another moment in the spotlight…


The gCreate Rocket

rocket lala-5


From our own print lab, the trick of this print was in the post-processing. Ever since releasing our first metal filled filament, bronzeFill, in 2014 we have received a lot of requests about post-processing these special materials. We finally caved in and set one of our print engineers Jos to work to print the rocket, sand it, polish it and to write about it. You can find the full blog here, but before you read it just look at the image above and wonder if this really looks printed…


Saturn V Rocket



“Per aspera ad astra” as they say in Latin. Who said we can’t be pretentious? O, we do love our rockets… One of the biggest eye catchers ever is the Saturn V rocket printed by Korneel Bullens. We had this collossal print (600+ pieces, 3500+ hours of printing on 4 Ultimakers and over 2.5 meters high – thank you very much) on our stand during the AM Show in Amsterdam in June of this year. Korneel is one of our most enthusiastic users with an extremely active 3D Hub here in the Netherlans. Entirely printed with nGen, our all-round co-polyester, made with Amphora™ AM3300 polymer by Eastman Chemical Company. Korneel printed the Toyota Engine with colorFabb_XT earlier and rumors have it that he is working on another ambitious project with colorFabb filaments…

You can read the full blog on the Saturn V rocket here.


colorFabb gift box


Design: custom made by Tony Short

It’s the little things that count. Things like running into one of our users at the TCT Show for the first time. Especially when that user is Tony Short and he has brought a gift! Tony’s background in typography and love for 3D printing (and especially our special filaments) have resulted in this fantastic gift box, based on our very own logo! The box is still a very much admired (and coveted) object in our office. Made with woodFill, bronzeFill and copperFill it was post-processed by Tony. You can find all the details in the blog we wrote about it a little while a go.


Medieval castle



Published only yesterday by the Stacker team, this print measures 57.5mm high and was printed on their Stacker S4. Famed for its four nozzles to accommodate small series production, you can also use one nozzle on this versatile printer to create one highly detailed and impressive print like this Medieval Castle. The material of choice is, like the Saturn V rocket, nGen, an excellent material for highly detailed prints like this one. We printed this castle ourselves earlier this year, but the size that the Stacker team achieved is just downright impressive.

colorFabb is the exclusive distributor for Stacker in Europe. Get more information here or get a quote here.


Printing transparent…


Earlier this year we already posted about how to print transparent with colorFabb_HT and recently we came across Daniel Norée’s tweet where he showcased his results. The transparent block was printed by Robert from 3DVerkstan. You know 3DVerkstan as our distributor in the Nordic region, as well as the Baltics. Printing clear products mainly relies on two key aspects: extruding enough material and getting enough heat (energy) into the new material. Optimal settings can lead to some very clear and transparent parts straight from the printer and it seems that Robert has found those optimal settings. You can find our full blog on transparent printing here.

Note: an earlier version of this blog ommited the part where we give credit to Robert from 3DVerkstan and created the impression that Daniel Norée printed this transparent block. Thanks you Daniel for pointing this out and sorry Robert!


Steve Cox’ printing with bronzeFill


Whenever Steve Cox is printing something with bronzeFill, we pay attention. Why? Look at the image above and you know. His work is always exciting and stunning. His work with bronzeFill can be considered a standard in printing and polishing. Steve’s enthusiasm about printing and his prints are contagious and we are always happy when we run into him during shows. We were even allowed to borrow the statue you see during the TCT Show! We have written about Steve’s work before, which you can find here and here.


The Open RC F1 car



This comes as no surprise. We love our F1 car. Designed by Daniel Norée (yes, he of the transparent printing earlier) we increased the size with 250% and started printing with all our co-polyesters: nGen, colorFabb_XT, colorFabb_HT, XT-CF20 and the then brand new nGen_FLEX for the tires. The design by Daniel, the materials by colorFabb and printed on the Stacker S4 result in one of our most ambitious print projects. The result is stunning. We leave it to the video below to show the result:

Catch up on the full project release blog here.

As said, those are just a few of the many great prints of 2016 so far. We love seeing them coming by on social media and by email. Keep sharing them!! We keep printing ourselves as well. You can find regular updates on this very site: 

Also, don’t forget to check out our collection of tutorials from time to time to get the best results printing with our filaments.

That’s it from colorFabb HQ for now. We hope you enjoy 3D Printing Day this year.

Happy 3D Printing Day and keep sharing your work!

– Team colorFabb



For the remainder of the year, because it is colorFabb’s fourth anniversary, we continue our Buy 4, Pay 3 promotion. Use coupon code colorfabb4you on our website to get the fourth spool you order for free! Some conditions apply though: cheapest spool is for free and samples and PLA Economy are exempt from this part of the promotion.