We are happy to announce that we have mostly recovered in terms of production. The delivery schedule will remain unchanged. Our software has recently reached a milestone and is now open source on GitHub. But times are still tough. We are concerned to see all the news about the situation of COVID-19 escalating around the world. The majority of our users are in North America and Europe, and it is pretty saddening to see those regions are most affected by this pandemic currently. We sincerely wish everyone safe and we are all going to go through this.
Delivery Schedule Remains Unchanged
We are fortunate to say that our production has mostly recovered, almost to its full capacity. Our worker return rate is higher; our stock of Snapmaker 2.0 is replenished to some extent. The production of the new enclosure is underway and on track. The third batch that was originally set to ship in early April will be shipped ahead of schedule by approximately 10 days. 347 machines from that batch was already shipped by 3/28/20 and the rest will be shipped according to the timeline provided below.
However, there is one variable. As the pandemic is spreading across the world, the delivery efficiency is lower. Fedex has suspended their money-back guarantee (MBG) service as in the cases with many other carriers we work with. We have been told that areas impacted most by the COVID-19 can expect slower deliveries, and our carriers will no longer be able to provide definite ETAs of deliveries. There could be delays of a few days or even weeks in transit. Our carriers will continue operating as government restrictions and regulations allow, and we completely understand that they have little control over the situation because we were (and still are) in the same boat.
Revamped Snapmaker Luban
Snapmaker3D, the first software we ever made, was our first step to tackle the 3D printing software market. It had fundamental features like slicing models and exporting G-code files. The software itself was pretty bare-boned but served as the foundation of its successor, the Snapmakerjs. Snapmakerjs was a software we pushed out the same year as the Snapmaker3D. In fact, they coexisted for some time before the Snapmaker3D was integrated into the Snapmakerjs. The Snapmakerjs replaced the older software and increased the number of supported platforms. The changes were transformative in that now with Snapmakerjs, users were able to 3D print, laser engrave/cut, and CNC carve within one application. That was the goal and philosophy of our software design. The Snapmakerjs’ usability made it the go-to software to use with the Snapmaker Original for over 2 years.
But that is not the end of the story, Snapmakerjs is now rebranded as the Snapmaker Luban. The Luban symbolizes a new start for us and it is more polished than ever. It is truly a 3-in-1 powerhouse with the following improvements and features added from years of iterations.
Intuitive User Interface
We’ve taken a simplistic approach when designing the software, resulting in a clean and easy-to-use control interface. Your common tasks such as 3D printing, laser engraving/cutting, and CNC carving are embedded as icons on the left side panel. There are different modes and settings you can select on the right side panel. Everything is displayed in icons and large text.
Efficiency is a big reason why users prefer an application to others. Luban allows 3D printing, laser engraving/cutting, and CNC carving with multiple models in one work session. That means users can upload multiple files to Luban and adjust the settings as needed to print, and their machines will take care of the rest. This can save users time and effort tremendously.
Users are given this magical option where they can take background pictures using Luban with their machines, drag their models onto the background pictures, and then engrave in the background areas they select. We’ve brought “what you see is what you get” to Luban and this whole process is extremely intuitive and straightforward, so our users can utilize the time saved for other tasks.
3D Rendering Optimization:
The performance of 3D rendering and G-code Preview has always been a known issue of 3D software, yet it is so essential to a slicer. After thorough analysis and trial and error, Luban can now render a model file that is twice as big and a laser/CNC file that is 4 times as big as before, while reducing the demand of RAM during use.
We added the functionality of Wi-Fi transfer in a recent update. You don’t even need a flash drive to transfer your print files. All can be done on your PC/MAC when you go to Wi-Fi Transfer in Workspace and choose to upload any files you want. You can command the machine through Wi-Fi as well to print right afterwards. It’s that simple.
In short, you can take full control of your workflow with Luban. The intuitive and feature-packed Snapmaker Luban now supports 9 languages, including English, German, Spanish, French, Italian, Russian, Korean, Japanese and Chinese, and multiple platforms such as OS X, Windows, and Linux.
Open Source on GitHub and a dedicated website for Luban
The reason why we decided to open source the application was actually very simple. We wanted to give back to this amazing 3D printing community. The software was built on the codebase of cncjs and used CuraEngine as the backend 3D slicing engine, both of which were obtained from the open source community. Because the Snapmaker Luban has evolved to become a standalone application that is able to handle everyday tasks and is integrated well with the Snapmaker devices, there is no better timing to open source the Snapmaker Luban than now to further expand the customizability.
Snapmaker Luban is officially open source now on GitHub. All users are welcome to post any issues and/or bugs found in the software. We believe that great things happen when there is a gathering of great minds. Please read the “README.md” file for any heads-up. You can file an issue in “GitHub Issues.” to submit a bug or feature request. Please make sure you have read our guidelines before contributing code. Thank you!
We’ve also set up a dedicated website for the open source Snapmaker Luban. You can check out more information about the software and its features on there. The website will contain the latest news about our open source project in the years to come. Thank you all for your support in making this happen.
Lastly, while we are working hard to ramp up production and develop our software, we want to address the current situation our distributors and users around the world are facing. The 3D printing community has stayed strong and connected. There are plenty of articles on the internet about doctors and dentists using 3D printed facemasks or face shields. We have the urge to share some of the amazing open source 3D printing communities out there on social media such as the Open Source COVID19 Medical Supplies Facebook Group, a place where people share their designs of 3D printed medical supplies with local needs, and this Coronavirus Tech Handbook for solutions related to the outbreak provided by technologists. We’ve just recently pulled together some resources to help fight COVID-19 for the regions most in need. We will post an update on that shortly. As always, please stay safe and healthy.