Amazing: 3D printed cool Doodle Clock perpetually writes time on a magnetic board

Professional architect and designing hobbyist Ekaggrat Singh Kalsi has just shared his very cool Doodle Clock that continuously writes the correct time on a magnetic board (and erases it again).

Ekaggrat is a project architect in Ahmedabad in India, but by night he is an avid 3D printer who loves to tackle unusual projects. And that is certainly a word you could use to describe some of his work.

His latest project is equally impressive, but a bit more tangible. While some other clock projects that rite down the time sometimes circulate the web, few are as impressive as the Doodle Clock. Built as a second generation of a previous project by Ekaggrat, this new version tackles the problem faced by most writing clocks. Typically, they all write down the time on paper or a whiteboard, but in all cases the pen or marker dries up, while the surface eventually also gets ruined.

3d printed clock
3d printed clock

The same happened with the first iteration of the Doodle Clock. ‘The biggest problem with the first clock was the drying up of the markers after just 30 minutes of working,’ he says on his website. Originally built as a bit of a fun project, the concept fascinated Ekaggrat, so he was very happy to find a solution to this common problem: Magnetic writing boards, often seen in toys. While even whiteboards or glass sheets will eventually get ruined by ink, this magnetic solution can go on writing the time perpetually. Two 2 mm cylindrical magnets inside a solenoid are key. One magnet passes over the board to draw lines, but when the other is passed over the other side, the lines are wiped out – perfect for a clock that news to change the result every single minute of the day.

The build itself is also farily straightforward. All parts are 3D printed, except for the small geared stepper motors that power the arms and the board itself. ‘The clock uses two 1:100 geared 15mm stepper motors to move the arms configured in a scara fashion. The motors are located at the base to keep the weight very low on the arms. The tip of the arms contains two solenoids with cylindrical magnets inside them,’ Ekaggrat explains. ‘I initially tried electromagnets but to get the text to be as dark as what is written by the magnet which comes along with the board needed a lot of power.’ The only problem is that the board eventually gets a bit scratched by the magnets, but the designer is looking to cover it with a very thin scratch resistant film to deal with this issue.


aha!3D: Jaipur-based industrial grade 3D printer makers

Aakash, a gold medallist of MNIT Jaipur 2002 batch got a taste of entrepreneurship when he joined Vihaan Networks in 2005. Before that, he had two smaller stints with C-DOT and Mentor Graphics. A curious mind, Aakash always had pet projects he’d work on. While working on his projects, he became aware of the limitations of conventional mechanical prototyping. Around 2009, he came across the RepRap project which had begun as an initiative to develop a 3D printer that can print most of its own components and be a low-cost 3D printer. This really spiked his interest and in 2010, he decided to start his own company AHA Gadgets which was later rebranded to aha!3D.

The idea was to develop indigenous 3D printers dedicated to the needs of Indian market. “Our first product Reality 3D, which also became India’s first indigenous 3D printer, was appreciated a lot at various platforms. The scope in this field motivated us to take this as full time work,” says Aakash. Aha!3D specialises in industrial 3D printers with a focus on reliability, repeatability, and ruggedness. The company also provides 3D printing services to customers wherein people can send their designs to get them prototyped.

Team aha!3D
Team aha!3D

Aha!3D has two products in the market, one catering to the desktop 3D printing segment and another to large-build volume shop-floor 3D printing segment. Their ProtoCentre 999 is the desktop 3D printer with a build volume of 9x9x9 cubic inches. It is a desktop model and comes with all features to provide an industrial quality output. “It comes with all metal chassis, closed chamber heated bed assembly with dual extruders. It has a printable range of materials including ABS, PC, HIPS, PLA, PETT and Nylon, apart from newer special materials like brassFill, woodFill, and other composite materials,” says Aakash.

And the ProtoCentre 1M alpha was introduced as a pilot product with selected technical partners (build volume of 30x20x40 inches cube, quad water cooled extruder and state of the art control software). “There are various low cost 3D printer available in market but they have too many limitations which are not acceptable in professional grade machines. Our entire research is dedicated to provide viable industrial grade machines, offering unparalleled return on investment,” says Aakash.

All aha!3D parts are made in India and the team follows a “soft inventory” concept where they keep digital designs for 5% parts which are 3D printed just-in-time when needed.

aha!3D evolution

Completely bootstrapped, aha!3D is proud to call itself “customer funded”. Adobe India bought Reality3D, the first version of their 3D printer when Adobe was in the process to develop a postscript equivalent for 3D printers. ISRO’s team which worked on the Mangalyaan also bought a PC999. They use it for making prototypes to test and validate their designs of the mechanical components. DRDO’s MTRDC Bangalore lab, which researches on microwaves, also bought PC 999 from aha!3D. “Our customers have graciously given us problems to solve and trusted our team to come up with the right solution,” says Akash. The desktop printer comes with a price tag of Rs 2,00,000. The industrial version is a custom made printer which is designed according to the demand of customers. Apart from selling 3D printers, the company also makes money from the 3D printing services it provides.

3D printing has attracted a lot of attention globally. With over $100 million in funding, Carbon3D is a benchmark company in the space and Shapeways, another upcoming giant in the space raised $30 million in July this year. Back home in India, Fracktal Works raised a round at $3 million valuation, there are other companies like df3dGlobal3D, etc., making headway. For aha!3D, it has been an exciting journey. Their team has expanded to 12 members and consists of experts on all aspects of machine design. Talking of the road ahead, Aakash says, “We are introducing a new application of 3D printing for the Indian scenario. We want to be the reason for adoption of 3D printing in mainstream life of India and also get India recognised for fundamental innovation on the global map.”

Novabeans Brings 3D Printed Jewelry Services to India

If you are a jeweler today who has discovered 3D printing, you probably aren’t reading this–as you’re too busy jumping up and down on your bed in glee–wild about the world of opportunities that have suddenly opened as you are able to make your own designs, edit and re-edit to your creative heart’s content, and then have them 3D printed–or if you so choose, purchase your own 3D printer and start churning out designs.

It’s a two-sided gold coin, as well, as designers are able to promote and sell their jewelry more easily–and consumers have many new designs and materials to choose from, allowing for exciting opportunities to customize. What’s most important to many as well is that selections are often much more affordable.

While we have numerous services available in the US and Europe which offer 3D printed jewelry galore now as well as a variety of ways to have designs fabricated, India is just on the tipping point of experiencing what the technology can do for this sector. Now, Novabeans–the leader in 3D printing services in India–is beginning a new venture in their country, with the introduction of 3D printed jewelry and a great program offering access to a select group.

Partnering with two US companies, B9Creations andMadeSolid, they are hoping to capture market share in a country with an impressive, emerging economy for 3D printing which is especially ripe in the jewelry arena.

The Novabeans team and their partners are aware that jewelry has great significance in India–as well as in other developing countries. It represents not just a symbol of wealth and security, but also is of great value in celebrations, individual expression, and of course–relationships. Pointing out that research from AlliedMarketResearch shows that India is slated to grow at a CAGR of 37.4% from 2014 through 2020, Novabeans, B9Creations, and MadeSolid together will most likely be setting a trend many will follow in offering 3D printed jewelry to the population.

n a program meant to introduce select professional designers, jewelers, and students to their 3D printing services, NovaBeans will provide them with free 3D printing (using DLP/SLA technology) of two objects that can be fabricated within a build volume of 30 x 30 x 40 mm. They are offering this introductory service through the end of the year, and only for original pieces–not downloaded files for other 3D models.


In working with B9Creations, Novabeans, as well as consumers in India, will be rewarded with their expertise in 3D printing and casting jewelry products, using high-resolution printers and quality materials.

We’ve followed all three of these companies previously, noting innovative3D printed designs by B9Creations, and MadeSolid too as they’ve announced countless new resins for 3D printing. We’ve also followed numerous programs via Novabeans, most recently that of their foray into the education system with 3D printed art. Their movement into 3D printed jewelry should prove seamless–and rewarding on all levels–as they continue to advance and expand. Currently, Novabeans has multiple offices in India, as well as a headquarters in Paris. With the largest 3D printing online ecommerce store in the country, they already have the perfect platform for nearly any area of 3D printing they choose to enter.

Along with numerous 3D printing solutions, support, and consulting services, Novabeans also offers 3D printing training workshops. They serve too as the official distributor for all products by Ultimaker, 3D Systems, Pinshape, Creopop, 3Doodler, B9Creations, UAVID 3D, Airwolf, MadeSolid, Flashforge, Littlebits, and more.

Discuss your thoughts on Novabeans’ latest partnerships and their advancement into the 3D printed jewelry arena in Novabeans Brings 3D Printed Jewelry Services to India forum thread over at


Accenture to bring startup innovation hub to India; may bring its 3D printing & internet of things solutions

Accenture is looking at bringing its startup innovation hub concept to India and will continue to work with Indian startups as it expects the country to emerge a source of innovation for the world, a top official said.

“I would say that it is more than a possibility (placing a startup hub in India). Collaboration with Indian startups is something already being done,” Gianfranco Casati, group chief executive – growth markets at Accenture, said.

“Personally, I would say, that I am very optimistic about India becoming a source of innovation for the world. Potentially, even more disruptive than China,” he told ET in an exclusive interaction.

The global consulting and IT giant has innovation hubs centred on new-generation technologies such as internet of things (IoT) in Silicon Valley to work with startups and partners.

Accenture already works with Indian startups in its FinTech Innovation Lab in Hong Kong and has given grants to researchers from IIT-Bombay, IIT-Chennai, BITS-Pilani and IISc-Bangalore for research in natural language programming, cognitive learning systems, and dependable software.

While the innovation boom in India is still in its early stages, mushrooming startups have raised some concerns for some IT companies who now have to compete with startups for talent at campuses and lose high-performing employees to them.
But Accenture looks at this differently, said Rekha Menon, the newly-appointed chairman of Accenture India.

“We are always training our employees — keeping them future-ready and engaged, because the newer generation wants to learn constantly. And we understand that some employees will want to move to startups, and we support that, because that’s the in-built risk in hiring top talent. We have also supported startups started by ex-Accenture employees,” she said.
Menon said the company was training its more than 100,000 strong workforce in India on newer digital technologies, not just to serve global clients, but also to serve the India market.

Accenture is also working on bringing its 3D printing and IoT solutions to India as part of its growth markets strategy.
Despite volatility in markets such as China and Brazil, Accenture logged double-digit growth in revenues its newer markets for its financial year ended August.

John O’Brien, analyst with TechMarket-View, pointed out that Accenture achieved double-digit growth across both consulting and outsourcing services, and across all three main geographies of North America (12 per cent), Europe (10 per cent), and growth markets (11 per cent).