CubeForme – a premier express lane to 3D Printing.
It could become a really effective way of promoting the 3D printing technology.
CubeForme is the brain child of Kyle Pham (University of Southern California) & Nicholas Nguyen (University of California, Irvine).
The journey was never easy. With an unsuccessful Kickstarter campaign things got a bit more challenging for the whole team, but of course CubeForme is still up and running today. You can surely visit and Subscribe right now !
The initial idea that Kyle and Nick had in mind was t-shirts featuring prints from graphic designers but since such a thing has already been done, they started looking out for something new, something authentic, and that is when they came across the idea of 3D Printing focused subscription boxes featuring 3D designers. The 3D printing industry and technology is growing but still there are people who are ill-informed & uninformed on the subject and as Kyle and Nick explain, “common knowledge of 3D Printing begins and ends with the fact that it exists.“, So, Cubeforme also helps promote this technology and provides people a hands-on experience.
Also, CubeForme focuses on bringing the light to the 3D Designers who do not get enough publicity and attention for their efforts.
We got in touch with both the founders to know more about their venture.
What was the inspiration behind CubeForme ? Where did you get the idea from ?
“When we began venturing into the domain of entrepreneurship, we discussed an idea around t-shirts and graphic design. After realizing that too many businesses exist in that space already, we sought to find a newer industry where we could make an impact. We both thought about 3D printing, which really intrigued us. We browsed through numerous 3D printed objects online, and were amazed with the breadth of things that were being 3D printed. Seeing the potential in all of it, we then observed how little 3D designers were being recognized. 3D printing, as a whole, was not well known by the general masses. As such, we formed CubeForme as the very first Subscription Box to feature 3D printed creations: a means for us to push 3D printing and its creative potential toward the general public, with a designer-driven approach to provide a publicity channel for designers.”
Can you please tell us how it works ?
“Each month, CubeForme features a new 3D designer and his or her story. The featured designer’s 3D creations are then used to curate a themed box. We handle all manufacturing, while designers receive 10% of every order for letting us use their designs. Subscribers can opt for four different plans: an ongoing 1 month at a time plan, 3 month plan, 6 month plan, and 1 year plan.”
“In addition to its monthly subscription box, CubeForme also has an on-demand 3D printed product marketplace. Filled with products from the designs of its featured designers, the marketplace allows customers to get individual objects in the color of their choosing. Also having 10% (commission) of each order go back to the designer, the marketplace serves as a way for CubeForme to continue supporting its designers and offer more to its customers outside of the subscription.”
What are you trying to achieve with CubeForme?
“The CubeForme vision is to foster a mainstream appreciation of 3D printing and bring light to 3D designers in a way not captured yet. We want to capitalize on the possibilities of creation allowed by this technology in order to bring people unique and innovative products. As such, we want to build as big of a community as we can and get our products out there to the best that we can.”
“On a personal level, it is important for us to explore and seize as many opportunities as we can with CubeForme. CubeForme is our first entrepreneurial venture, and as such, we’ve been learning so much with each passing day. Every moment in growing the business, every mistake, and every conversation…it’s all been so important to us as developing entrepreneurs and adults.”
Do you see your it as a Novelty product ?
“Beyond its more functional gadgets and accessories, CubeForme does have a number of trinkets in its boxes & marketplace that could be considered a novelty. But CubeForme’s monthly boxes provide not only products but experiences. There is suspense and surprise to every month, with a hands-on presentation and uniqueness not found elsewhere. More importantly, there is meaning and purpose to every creation we curate and distribute as the pieces of a designer’s work, the purchases of which help support the designer. Ultimately, CubeForme is about connecting 3D designers and their creations with a broader audience, a premise which can be impactful.”
If possible, how would you define/explain CubeForme in a Single word & a sentence ?
One word : “Creation.”
Sentence : “CubeForme is the first subscription box to feature 3D printed products, connecting innovative 3D designers and their creative work with the world.”
Can people send in their creations to be printed or you are just limited to designers only ?
“Our model is built toward two ends, selling complete 3D printed products to customers and giving designers an avenue to put their designs toward. From a business standpoint, we market ourselves as a subscription box & a marketplace. That being said, if someone needed help getting something printed, we would be happy to help, it’s just not something we advertise because there are many other businesses that are focused on doing that.”
What is the future of CubeForme ?
“We will continue to gradually grow our collection of products by featuring a new designer each month, pushing out more boxes and building our community further. Because the 3D printing industry is shifting and transforming, we may pivot in the future. We may be looking to fit whatever household need for 3D printing eventually arises. 3D printing will get faster and eventually just be another means of manufacture, without the glamour. Which is fine, as we find the most importance of 3D printing to be its position as an outlet for creativity and invention. The results of the technology, as opposed to the technology itself, are what matter.”
Which printer are you using & which technique and is this whole process expensive ?
“We are using a SeeMeCNC Rostock MAX v2, which is a Delta-style FDM printer. While a bit expensive for the initial purchase, the process itself is pretty cheap. And the printer itself was still great for its price point in relation to how effective it is. We bought it as a kit, so my co-founder Nick had to build. In terms of each print, the economic cost isn’t too much. Filament can be bought in large spools and lasts for many prints. However, the main cost is time. It can take ten hours to print the contents of just one CubeForme box.”
CubeForme‘s official website.
You can also find CubeForme
(click to visit)