MakerBot Store Opens at 298 Mulberry Street

Bowery Boogie Oct 09, 2012 Back to press

Exciting news for engineers, industrial designers, jewelry makers, sculptors, toy collectors, scientific types, and general geeks everywhere (I think we just described most of downtown New York): MakerBot Industries, creators of 3D printers for the masses, just opened a retail store at 298 Mulberry Street.

This is the first brick-and-mortar shop for the Brooklyn-based company. We had seen the earlier plywood versions of MakerBots at the Maker Faire last year, the holiday windows of the New Museum, and at a WIRED holiday pop-up store a few years ago, coincidentally a (3D printed?) stone’s throw away from the current location.

We recently checked out the new store, which features demonstrations of the printers and an incredibly enthusiastic staff. Founder and CEO Bre Pettis was also holding court, answering questions about the art of printing 3D objects and discussing various software which can be used with the hardware.

MakerBot’s two new 3D printer models, the Replicator 2 Desktop Printer and Replicator 2x Desktop Printer, are for sale in the store ($2,199 and $2,799, respectively). The back of the store showcases an eye-catching display of the “inks” available for the printers: two types of filament plastic (ABS, the stuff that Legos are made out of, and PLA, a corn based bio-plastic), sold in spools in a variety of vibrant colors. Decorative objects and jewelry, examples of objects made by the printers, are also available for purchase.

We were mesmerized, as were many others, by a floor-to-ceiling roller coaster-like contraption in the window, composed of over 2,000 pieces each printed by a MakerBot. Every time a ball was released at the top, it traveled through the installation by a different path.

One of our favorite parts of the store is a series of gumball machines with small MakerBot-printed toy prizes inside, each costing five bucks. It was tough to decide between a miniature Doctor Who Tardis, assorted tiny robots, sculptures from the Metropolitan Museum, or a very small and detailed cityscape with Godzilla towering over the skyscrapers. Despite wishing that the toys could have been created in the bio-plastic rather than the less eco ABS (and packaged in something more environmental than the classic vending machine plastic bubbles), we wound up taking the Godzilla home. But, the Tardis is calling to us, so we will definitely need to go back.

The MakerBot store is now open – 298 Mulberry Street.

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