Oct 6, 2015 | By Benedict

Earlier this year, when the first teaser trailer was unveiled for Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens, the internet virtually exploded. Fans cheered, cried, and argued about what they had witnessed: new Jedi (21 seconds), a Sith Lord with a bizarrely safety-conscious lightsaber (52 seconds), and a droid resembling the Mitre football I used to play with at school (27 seconds). That spherical droid, named BB-8, has been made into a phone/tablet-controlled toy, which looks like a stroke of business genius on the part of Sphero, its creators. The must-have item, sold out in a number of places, is shaping up to be 2015’s number one Christmas gift. 3Doodler, the company behind our favourite 3D printing pen, have seemingly bought into the Star Wars toy hype as much as we have. After having a play with the remote-controlled BB-8 and noticing its detachable magnetic head, they decided to 3D print some replacement nobs. Now, using a 3Doodler, you can transform your BB-8 into a rolling R2D2, a spherical Skywalker, a dome-shaped Darth Vader, or a lurching Leia. You can also turn it into a French pirate.

After borrowing a BB-8 from their friends, the 3Doodler team armed themselves with a few of their famous 3D printing pens (and a golf ball), and set about making the new heads. To make your own BB-8 head in the style of 3Doodler’s impressive creations, you'll need your own 3Doodler 3D printing pen and plastic strands, a golf ball, masking tape, a small magnet, and the BB-8 itself.

Here’s how 3Doodler recommend making a 3D-printed Princess Leia BB-8 head: Firstly, grab your golf ball and tape one half of it with masking tape. Using the ‘Café au Lait' colour plastic strands, start Doodling the head on the taped side of the golf ball. When the base of the head is complete, remove it from the golf ball. Use the ‘Brownie Brown’ colour plastic strand to Doodle Leia’s iconic hairdo! Start with a pair of symmetrical half semicircles, then add some curves for her bangs. Doodle multiple circles over and over to build up those recognisable side buns. Keep doodling for added detail! Add the facial features, if you so wish, before creating a base for the head by doodling around the small magnet. Attach the base and the head together and—hey presto!—you’ve just 3D printed the weird lovechild of Carrie Fisher and that Mitre football from my school. As can be seen on 3Doodler’s site, it’s possible to make a convincing Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, R2D2, and… a French pirate.

All images from 3Doodler

3Doodler were pretty pleased with their work, and with Sphero’s BB-8 itself: “Once our crack Jedi 3Doodler team had BB-8 sufficiently styled, we kicked him into hyperdrive, navigating a menacing gauntlet of 3Doodled obstacles, including Storm Troopers, mountains, monsters, and yes, even our office dog, Ophelia (filling in as a furry adaptation of an Imperial AT-AT).” Good luck making your own!



Posted in 3D Printing Applications





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Eleanor wrote at 11/16/2015 6:30:55 PM:

Hi there, is it possible to print a tiny 2cm ball with the FIG (international Federation of Gymnastics) colours on it? (blue and white lines with the red letters of FIG) and how much would it cost if I wanted about 20 of them?

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