Justin Johnson adjusts BoXZY.
Courtesy of BoXZY

Move over 3D printers, BoXZY is creating the triple threat desktop to take over the makerspace. BoXZY is a first-of-its-kind, interchangeable fabrication lab, combining a 3D printer, CNC machine and laser engraver in a workstation small enough to sit on your desk.

The founders of BoXZY, brothers Joel and Justin Johnson, were inspired to develop BoXZY after discovering TechShop.

“We came in here, bought two Makerbots and started thinking about how we could develop a mobile maker space,” Justin explains from the BoXZY space in TechShop.

“I’m very much just your tinkerer and creator. It’s always been my goal to make something that enables making,” says Justin, “I wanted to make something that even a child could have access to.”

BoXZY’s combination of 3D printing with Laser Etching and a CNC machine means any maker, small business or educator can create finished products easily at home. The three arms switch in and out quickly in a matter of seconds.

Courtesy of BoXZY

“We wanted BoXZY to be the kind of thing that gave people the ability to create something finished and sellable that they could profit from so they can build businesses on their interests,” Joel says.

Customers can use BoXZY’s 3D printer to print models, the CNC to create intricate patterns and the laser engraver to personalize an item. There’s no end to what these machines can create, and BoXZY is suitable for everyone from middle school hobbyists to small businesses.

The Johnsons gave out BoXZYs to several local makers to beta test the prototype. Kerf Case uses BoXZY to carve one-of-a-kind luxury wood cases with engravings, and a local contractor uses the CNC attachment to carve out ornate custom trims for home restoration projects.

“He [the contractor] taught himself how to use CAD and BoXZY,” says Joel. “Within just a few days, he was running BoXZY 24 hours a day for projects.” BoXZY is designed to be simple and user-friendly, so makers can think more about what they’re building, not worry about the machine they’re building with.

After testing prototypes, BoXZY launched a Kickstarter and successfully raised just under $1.2 million, far surpassing their initial $50,000 goals. With more pre-orders coming in everyday, the team has just secured a production space with Bridgeway Capital in its Susquehanna Street location to start shipping out BoXZYs.

A BoXZY costs between $1,999-3,500, depending on the accessory package. A typical Makerbot 3D printer starts its pricing at $2,500.

In the future, BoXZY hopes to develop additional attachments for its product, expanding the capabilities so customers can create even more items. As the client base grows, BoXZY hopes to expand consumer’s ambitions in the maker movement and small business. “We want people to have lifestyle businesses that they can grow,” says Joel, “one BoXZY at a time.”

Emma Diehl

Emma Diehl is a writer, blogger, and social media marketer working in tech and startups in Pittsburgh. She loves local craft beer and a well-crafted pun.