New 3d food printer, first steps

My 2019 3d food printing resolutions included, not only, a new 3d food printer. Pinya4 is a new iteration on the saga. The fourth one.

As mentioned in this previous post the main goals for my new 3d food printer Pinya 4 are:

  • Easy to use
  • Automatic multitool
  • Clean access to printing area
  • Easy to clean

My first iteration, does not tackle all these features. In fact it mostly focuses in a single one. Clean access to printing area.

The reason for this is to actually learn (start to) a bunch of new making skills:


From day one I wanted to use stainless steel for my printer. It is the “pro” cooking appliance material. Welding the body felt like the right way to get a sturdy frame. Also I got excuse to my first steps into TIG welding.

Following pictures show the evolution for the new food printer first frame.

Of course this took way longer than expected, but through a some trial and error I got the frame done. Stainless steel is a harder material to cut, compare to aluminum, so that was intense. I was happy with the results and I even ended up welding the bolt joins!


This was a fun one, I wanted the new food printer to have as much as metal parts as possible. I quickly gave up on stainless part for my learning process with CNC. Thanks to the support from Hannah and Boris from New Lab I was able to jump on the Haas and machine the main plate and biceps for the printer.

The following parts are the printer biceps:


Having quick access to New Lab printing service, it was a no brainer to take advantage of it. I printed the end effector, the ball joint cup and bicep to shaft thingy.

I used abuse FDM, but for more complex and tiny parts like the ball joint cup it makes a HUGE difference, thanks Alex!

Endeffector picture:

Following picture is the second iteration of the ball joint cup:


My last 3d food printer was using a Smoothieboard. Instead the new 3d food printer uses a Duet3D.

Not a lot of reason was put into this change. Basically I wanted the firmware to have rotary delta kinematics, I was curious about the wifi integration, and wanted to try the RepRapFirmware.

Lessons learned


I knew that not designing the whole printer in CAD, I use mostly fusion360, was a mistake. But at the same time I knew that If I had to put the hours to make a beautiful and full featured CAD I would had never started the printer.
Due to the lag of a proper full design, I did the following mistakes:

  • The printer is shorter in height. By almost 90mm!!!
  • The tension mechanism of the motor belts is BAD
  • The endstops set up is not friendly
  • the ball joints are a never ending mess

Although beyond this issues, I am really happy on how the printer looks and feels specially thanks to welding and cnc wise.

Stainless steel is bouncy

Being this my first (and so far) only stainless steel welding project I had zero idea about how to size the body. I used 1/2 in flat bar, that turn out to make the body quite springy.

Next iteration will have a stronger design, or so I hope!

Gravity (weight distribution)

Never thought about this until I had the first parts on my hand. The hanging head of the printer (includes motors and arms) is pretty heavy! So the tower needed to be at least twice as heavy. Right now it is not and I need to balance the printer with a pot full of coins.

Ball joints

Without thinking much I moved from magnet hold to spring loaded ball joints. I am already into my 3rd design iteration, and for some reason I feel they wont be the last one.

First iteration used only one spring, what made all the joints S-N-A-P

Second iteration used two springs, and a bigger “cup” to slide around the ball. I felt the surface in contact between socket and ball was too big and decided to do a third iteration. Probably this wasnt needed. Although I feel, deep down inside of me I was hoping to solve in hardware calibration issues in the printer.

Rotary delta?!?!

Where to start here. This is my first rotary delta. In fact, I build the hardware before I even had a slightly idea of how to make it work. Obviously I still dont. I have managed to do some quick print, to clearly realize the need for a proper calibration day.

Printing food I have never worried too much about calibration, I dont think 1mm up or down matters much, but at least having a flat layer is a must… so it is clear that that is my next step!


There is still a long road ahead to get Pinya4 up and running, hopefully sooner than later we will get there. Once we have a solid foundation is when things are going to start getting fun, trying to solve some of our early design goals! multitool anyone???

Thanks a lot! Cudos to you if you made it all the way down here.

BTW, if you like what you read here, consider supporting us on Patreon that makes a world of a difference and help us to make more awesome things!

Why a new 3d food printer?

It has been almost 4 years since the release of my last 3d food printer PINYA3. A lot has happened since then and an update felt obvious. But needed?

PINYA3 design criteria were:

  • Easy to clean
  • Kitchen compatible: print on a dish, small footprint
  • Fixed printing area

At the last minute, a fourth one slip in. Fast to build. Because I had a limited amount of time to build it while at Pier9.

Overall PINYA3 has been working hard since then, and despite the every-now-and-then hiccups, could not be happier with it. It enabled a lot of experimentation, with a fraction of the issues I used to have with the previous version. With this 3d food printer I have experimented with:

  • Up to 4 extruders printing at the same time
  • Air extrusion
  • Coaxial extrusion
  • Powder/liquid extrusion

My opinion is that:

the next step on 3d food printing is seamless multitool integration.

With that in mind here are the goals for my new 3d food printer:

  • Easy to use
  • Automatic multitool
  • Clean access to printing area
  • Easy to clean

Fun fact PINYA4 has been design on paper way before PINYA3 was build.

PINYA4 first draft

There are two main “specs” of my new 3d food printer that need a bit more of explanation.

“Easy to use”. Goal for PINYA4 is that more people (than myself) have access to it, and more importantly, FUN USING IT! Basically a low cost/access to the 3d food printer and easy to use tools (software and hardware).

I think i can tackle the first one, making a build-your-own-3d-food-printer-workshop and trying to keep price “within-sense”. The second one I feel is a bit more challenging due too the lack of 3d food printing design resources, specially for multitool printing. But one thing at the time.

First prototype of PINYA4 (already on the works) is dedicated to learn some of the new technical challenges including, welding, CNC, rotary delta, … Hopefully sooner than later first iteration will be up and running so we can start PINYA4’s potential.

If you made it all the way here, it means you are truly interested in 3d food printing, if you are in New York consider joining one of our workshop, for the rest of the world join our Patreon page for online classes!

3d food printing conference 2019

2019 was not going to be an exception…The 3d food printing conference 2019 is back! This is always exciting.

  • Something new will change the game?
  • Talks
  • Networking
  • Live demos!

One of the very few opportunities to have a 3d food printing immersion with professionals in the field.

3D Food Printing Conference 2019 takes place on June 27, 2019, as part of a two-day agri-food event that also includes dedicated conferences to healthy nutrition, smart farming and vertical farming. The conference will focus on topics such as 3D food printing, materials, textures, laser cooking, molecular gastronomy, food research, insect cultivation, protein alternatives and more.

These are the confirmed speakers:

Roisin Burke, Senior Lecturer in Culi nary Science, Dublin Institute of Technology, Ireland, on ‚ÄėNote by Note cooking (Molecular Gastronomy) and 3D Food Printing‚Äô

Jonathan Blutinger, PhD Candidate, Columbia University, Creative Machines Lab, USA, on ‚ÄúLaser cooking: re-imagining the culinary experience‚ÄĚ

With a bit of luck will get to see each other there!~

3d food printing workshop in NYC

Hi, everyone. This is Luis. 3DigitalCooks is back with a new 3d food printing workshop.


We have put together a 101 workshop on 3d food printing that we will be holding regularly in New York City. We feel is the right time to start sharing all our knowledge and experience on 3d food printing! But most important… this workshop is a taste of our own dream

a 3d food printing school

But let’s not go so far just yet.

This 101 workshop will introduce our attendees to 3d food printing in a creative, fun and hands on way. Understanding how 3d food printing is a new tool in the kitchen, the same way a blender is, BUT with tremendous potential specially in creativity.

So what is the content of this workshop some of you may ask.

Here it is the outline:

** INTRO **
** DESIGN **
** PASTES **
** FUN **

Having fun is the key for this 3d food printing workshop and this is important because we believe is the right approach to learn about 3d food printing. With that in mind, along the workshop we will start form scratch understanding the importance of 3d food printing, what it is and how it works. We will take some time to explain about the key aspects of it, design, food and techniques but at the same time having a hands on experience with printing pastes and powders techniques.

We are organizing the workshop through this MEETUP group,

Sign up: HERE
Location: Long Island City in NYC
Duration: ~2hours
Cost: 50$

If you want to know more please contact us through INSTAGRAM

Looking forward to have fun together and sharing my passion/obsession on 3d food printing with y’all!

3d printed colorful hummus

Moving to New Lab

March, 2017 already. Time flies, faster than we would like but, well, that one thing its the same for all of us. This time our weekly adventure is moving the ZCorp printer, again. To New Lab!

I have been recently accepted as a Fellow there, so I get to have more space for my experiments. Thanks a lot to TK from the Thai Bird for helping me out and my wife to!

Moving a 100 kilos machine it has some challenges, specially when there is no elevator involved. But lessons learned from the first time.

  • Tag and sort all the screws
  • Disassemble E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G (specially the piston walls)
  • Take your time

Luckily everything went well and the printer has already a new home. Time to start working on some new projects! Any suggestions?

New powder and paste extruder idea

In this week’s video we cover one of our old ideas, still pending to explore. In this case nothing but a pepper grinder transformed into a powder extruder that include a nozzle within.

This idea was born and execute during my time at Pier 9. the goal was to merge textures within one print, explore supports.


  • Nema 17
  • Gear reduction
  • Drive shaft with an interior pipe
  • Nozzle
  • Grinder core
  • Grinder housing

Soon more information. Do you have any idea on how we could use it? Let us know we are open to try. We are really interested using and combining alcohols and sugars to burn them.

Previous test with just the power where really fun, excited to redo them and share them with you!

Does this video triggers any idea for a recipe? Contact with us!

3DFPod Ch. 11 – Summer16 3D Food Printing News Roundup

Yes, it’s been a while since Luis and I(Jason) have been able to be so honored to be in your earbuds.. Thank you for your patience while we took a short break to digest a lot of things, create some things, work on some things and add more things to the list of things ahead for 3DIGITALCOOKS! We’re about to check one of those things off the list as we release our latest 3DFPod, Chapter 11: Summer 2016 3D Food Printing News Roundup.

In the latest chapter of the 3D Food Printing Podcast we cover some of the things that happened in the world of 3DFP during the summer of 2016 just in case you may have missed out on anything. ¬†Don’t forget that Luis puts out a weekly video on 3D food printing over at the 3DIGITALCOOKS YouTube channel so in case the podcast isn’t enough, head there for some more 3DFP goodness.

Quick taste of Ch. 11: Summer16 3D Food Printing News Roundup

  • FoodInk Official Launch in London
  • Structur3D collab with Ultimaker
  • Natural Machines’ Foodini announcement
  • Hod Lipson’s students concept 3D Food Printer
  • Beehex collab with Chef Pasquale Cozzolino
  • 3DChef exapanding accross the globe
  • Florian Horsch of Soup & Socks / habibi.works shoutout
  • and more!

HUGE thank you to Tyler Kealey for letting us use his cover of Welcome Back! Check out his work here: tylerkealey.com/

Listen Now or Subscribe on iTunes –>¬†https://goo.gl/qv0D3V

Download options for the 3D Food Printing News Podcast

Thank you for your patience while we were in the lab and in the rafters shingling roofs and.. drywalling…

We’re super excited (😉¬†… after you listen to the¬†3D Food Printing News Roundup podcast¬†you’ll get it) to be back and looking forward to a great Fall and Winter of 3D Food Printing ahead!

Luis + Jason