The Egg-Bot: Bringing CNC Printing To Kids and Beginners

Updated Apr 18, 2017
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It’s always great to hear of new and innovative inventions that are created using CAD and the amazing Egg-Bot is one of our current favourites.

It’s the brain child of Bruce Shapiro who created it as a simple, easy-to-use CNC machine. It allows CAD designs to be printed onto an egg-shaped object making it great for kids and beginners.

raster to vector to egg

The machine is designed to be adjustable enough to allow the user to draw on items that are usually considered to be impossible to print on. Items such as wine glasses, golf balls and light bulbs are all capable of getting their own printed design, although it takes a bit of skill to master this.

It’s designed to allow a more light-hearted and fun approach to 3D or CNC printing and its simple-to-use design means that any colourful image can be drawn onto the objects, so the user can create personalised golf balls, Christmas ornaments and of course decorative Easter eggs.

The potential to create colourful designs and the ease of use means that the Eggbot is marketed towards children and beginners to CNC equipment. (We’ve even included it in our rundown of the best CNC kits for beginners!) In fact, one of the goals behind the project is to teach beginners about the electronics, mechanics, and software needed to build their own motion control projects. Shapiro states that this is in order to support the emerging field of home robotics as a medium for teachers, artists, and makers.

The Egg Bot is available to order from Evil Mad and is priced $195 (approx. £122) and comes equipped with:

  • The Eggbot chassis with integrated stand
  • Two precision stepping motors
  • Pen-lift servo motor
  • The Eggbot controller board
  • All the hinges, standoffs, and other hardware that makes up the Eggbot
  • Plug-in universal-input power supply
  • USB cable
  • Sharpie brand pens

To use the Eggbot all you need is a working computer with internet access and a USB port in order to connect the Bot to your computer.
In order to print CAD designs onto the egg, you need to use create an SVG (a vector file format) of your design. If you have a raster image, then it needs to be converted to a vector file in order to be printed. Thankfully Scan2CAD provides the ideal raster to vector conversion solution.

The how to guide for converting your raster image to vector:

1.    Load your file: Launch Scan2CAD and click ‘File’ > ‘Raster’ > ‘Load’. Choose your file and click OK.

2. Choose Image type: Click ‘Type’ and choose the type which best describes your image. Scan2CAD will intelligently change the way it deals with your image based on your image type.

3. Convert: Click the ‘All’ button. This will convert your raster to vector

4. Save The SVG file: Click ‘File’ > ‘Vector’ > ‘Save as’ and save your SVG file. That’s it. You’re all done! You can now open the SVG file you’ve created in your vector software and print the colourful image onto an egg shaped object. (The Eggbot recommend the free application Inkscape for this)

With help from Scan2CAD brilliant software, you can enjoy the benefits of the Eggbot and hopefully create something that the entire family will enjoy.

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