Sherri Dodd (@sh3rr1mms) just tweeted me asking how I use Minecraft and 3D printing together. I don’t really, though I’d like to do so more often. I led a Minecraft project in the spring, and a 5th grader was inspired to build a 3D model of his construction on our Bits From Bytes printer. I’m pretty sure he used Tinkercad to re-design his structure and ready it for printing.
A quick Google search for “minecraft 3d printing” yielded an interesting PCWorld article by Kevin Lee about Mineways. I pasted some text from it below.
(The full article is here: Mineways Turns Your Minecraft World Into Real 3D-Printed Creations)
Developed by Eric Haines, Mineways is a free, open-source program that translates sculpted Minecraft worlds and objects into ready-to-print models and texture maps. The program also allows you to tweak colors, remove unprintable features (floating islands), and hollow out otherwise solid areas to bring down the cost of 3D-printing.
To get started, you have to load-up your Minecraft map into the program and select the region you want to print from a birds-eye view. After the program processes that part of the world into a model, you can still change the materials used, empty spaces, simplify impossible-to-replicate features, and perform other tweaks to make your model cheaper and look better. Haines posted an extensive guide on how to use the program.
Once you’ve done all that fine-tuning, you can send it to a 3D-printer…This is not the first time Minecrafters have been given a way to 3D-print their virtual creations. There’s been printed Minecraft figures from MineToys and single tone models from Minecraft.print(). This, however, is the first time we’ve been given the chance to print non-object specific creations and landscapes in full-color.