Hey! This thing is still a Work in Progress. Files, instructions, and other stuff might change!


by paulharter, published

Printcraft by paulharter Jun 13, 2012

Featured Thing!


A Minecraft server that emails you .stl files of models created in-game

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Hey, I was at MineCon!!! What is the new IP??

will this be updated for 1.5?

Can someone upload the .stl of that skull? I don't have minecraft

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BSD License
Printcraft by paulharter is licensed under the BSD License license.

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If you print this Thing and display it in public proudly give attribution by printing and displaying this tag. Print Thing Tag


New server up and running!!!

Log in to Minecraft and go to eu1.printcraft.org

Build in one of the glowstone areas

Add a signpost with your email

Press PRINT and you will be sent a .stl file of your model


You must be logged in to post a comment.

NachoEnder on Dec 6, 2013 said:

Hey, I was at MineCon!!! What is the new IP??

robokid on Mar 17, 2013 said:

will this be updated for 1.5?

TheMakersWorkbench on Feb 25, 2013 said:

Can someone upload the .stl of that skull? I don't have minecraft

knarf2011 on Oct 20, 2012 said:

can something made on the server be considered a derivative?

paulharter on Oct 22, 2012 said:

I don't really know. If it was made using it I guess so


paulharter on Oct 1, 2012 said:

I have spent a couple of days on Printcraft and added a few things, some based on suggestions from here:

A domain of its own mc.printcraft.org
A one page website at www.printcraft.org
A twitter account printcrafting
A separate printing process on the server with a print queue
Three new 100 x 100 block printing areas.
Food in the chests
Email error reports from OpenSCAD if it goes wrong

Also I will be at the 3dprintshow in London on the 19-21 - come and say hello if you are going


paulharter on Oct 1, 2012 said:

Thanks I'm glad your reprap build class like it - I think I met some of them on the server.

I have added three new outdoor spaces that they might like

Also thank you for putting up the subdomain - I have finally got around to giving the server a domain of its own - If I have done the A record right mc.printcraft.org should work soon.


paulharter on Oct 1, 2012 said:

Hi Tom,

These are both very good ideas

I have just put in three new areas to build in that are 100 x 100 blocks. I have put them outside because although I like my building it is a bit dark in there sometimes.

I am thinking about how best to use world edit safely. I think I could wrap some of its functions with commands of my own that would check the bounding box.



eagleapex on Aug 27, 2012 said:

I added a subdomain address so it's easy to remember: printcraft.1178.us That's my house's domain name. My reprap build class students love the idea of designing in Minecraft for their new MendelMax printers! Thanks!

tomthecarrot on Jul 22, 2012 said:

Paul, this is amazing! I did a few tests and it's great!

Some feedback:
1. Maybe make some duplicates of the building so that when more than one person is online trying to make something they can just use different buildings?
2. World edit? (but only within the bounding box)


MangoT21 on Jun 29, 2012 said:

if there is something already there, is it safe to remove it without messing up someone else's work?

I assume the email is sent when you pull the lever, and after that whatever is on the field isn't needed any longer.

I just wanted to make sure before digging up someone else's project.

paulharter on Jul 3, 2012 said:

I'm not really sure. I haven't thought this through enough.

I will at least add a sign asking people to clear their work when finished.

Maybe I should add more spaces to build in so there is always room?

flint_read on Jun 28, 2012 said:

I really love this idea but I'm new to mine craft how do I activate the fly command to build faster please?

paulharter on Jun 29, 2012 said:

I added a plugin called extrafly the command is /ef to toggle flying on

Applerust on Jun 25, 2012 said:

I really love this. I was making things in single player mc and just exporting it myself but I like your system a lot more. Would you be willing to share these plugins and setup info for others to use? Thanks!

Applerust on Jun 25, 2012 said:

Ahh, I found this: https://gist.github.com/293358...

Thanks for sharing your creation! I made a little tree emblem on your server. It's neat :)

Jimmern on Jun 18, 2012 said:

This is brilliant! My kids love Minecraft, and took to this immediately. It's a great way to get kids (or anyone!) modeling and printing.

Still some bugs, some of our more ambitious constructions never came through as .STL files (more than 1500 blocks). Not sure why. Have had some email contact with Paul, and he's given some good feedback.

Big Kudos for this Paul - keep on updating it!

Jimmern on Jun 18, 2012 said:

Should note that I had 4 ten year olds here this weekend, logged into the server from 3 machines and working collaboratively to build objects. It was great!

paulharter on Jun 15, 2012 said:

I have made a couple of changes:

- You can build with clay as well as sand and so make overhangs.
- Enlarged blocks by 1/100 to avoid upsetting OpenSCAD.
- Added diamond shovels

I have also put the main source files in a github gist:


The javascript is called using TriggerCmds and WorldEdit plugi

The JavaScript creates a scad file and then uses Java to call the Python script. This is a bit painful as Rhino doesn't seem to wrap the Java runtime in the necessary way to call exec - hence loading it by name.

There is actually an extra python file inbetween called main.py but it does nothin
g but:

import scad

This is necessary for the scad.py file to know its own location in the file system with __file__ (there are other ways to do this)

The scad.py file converts the scad to stl by calling OpenSCAD , saves the files, saves the details to couchdb and emails the stl


BoriSpider on Jun 14, 2012 said:

So I just tried it but haven't got my e-mail yet.

Am I understanding this right, only the SAND is "printed"?

Other block will be voids in your prints?

paulharter on Jun 14, 2012 said:

Yes only sand is printed. This was to avoid overhangs but it seems that some overhanging is ok so think I will change this, and I might build a bigger stage area with the blocks coming out a bit smaller by default in the STLs.

Sometimes the STL creation fails, see below, I am going to try tbuser's fix for this, but for the moment it fails if blocks meet only on an edge and not a face.

Marsades on Jun 13, 2012 said:

I don't get how everybody have forgotten everything about www.minecraftprint.com . With that software you don't need to share some sandbox server.

timmmmyboy on Jun 15, 2012 said:

I haven't forgotten about minecraftprint. I certainly went through every painful step of loading the custom libraries, placing the waypoints, exporting the data from the world. And it still didn't work. First try with this server and I have an email in less than a minute with an STL file ready to print. This is awesome!

Zomboe on Jun 14, 2012 said:

Just based on reading the descriptions, paulharter's method here sounds like it is easier to use. But it's always good to have multiple options.

hellphish on Jun 13, 2012 said:

It works great!

More and more, I am thinking Minecraft is becoming the ultimate educational tool.

Nudel_P on Jun 13, 2012 said:

Lovely idea! How do you generate the stl file? Using mineways or something from the world file directly, or through some in game plugin?

paulharter on Jun 13, 2012 said:

I used a slightly Heath Robinson combination of the Rhino embedded JavaScript engine in the WorldEdit plugin to read the blocks and write a scad file. Then do a Java exec from js to run a Python script that in turn forks a call to OpenSCAD to make STL and then python call to Postmark web service to post file. Not v pretty! But it works ok.

elk on Jun 13, 2012 said:

This Idea makes me think about my opinion on minecraft... It seemd to be "waste of time" to me (as many games probably are, even if a really nice waste of time in fact) but this is one of the most creative ideas that I got over in relation with Games and 3D printing! Great! 8-)

mdorries on Jun 13, 2012 said:

I tried it out and it seems great. I haven't gotten the STLs in email yet. Not sure if it takes awhile or if that is glitched. I'd also recommend diamond shovels be available to quickly remove misplaced sand. Also your spawn point appears to be under water? Or at least that's where I spawned. Otherwise it looks great!

paulharter on Jun 13, 2012 said:

Oops! I'll move the spawn point. It should be on the end of the pier.

I'm not sure why the stls aren't working for some people. I will add some logging this evening.

I can add diamond shovels. That's a good idea. Thanks


Jewcookie on Jun 13, 2012 said:

Very nice and orignional idea. I like the idea that children can play and learn to use 3D on such an easy and playfull way.

BillyBigStuff on Jun 13, 2012 said:

How does it work? I might be being dumb but could you explain further? :-P

paulharter on Jun 13, 2012 said:

If you have access to a 3D printer you can use this to build models using Minecraft. Minecraft has a very simple intuative interface for creating 3D models that many children (including my own) already know how to use, so they can easily make new things to print.

If you login into Minecraft and visit my server at you can create models which are then converted into .stl files and emailed back to to you ready to print.