Cocoa Press Announces the Launch of Their Chocolate 3D Printer

After many years of development, the Cocoa Press is ready for reservation.

The general public likely sees more news stories about exotic 3D printers, like those that print food or biological tissue, then they do about the conventional plastic-extruding 3D printers that we all actually use. But despite that publicity, printing something like chocolate is challenging. Many years ago, I wrote about a high school student who managed to engineer an effective chocolate 3D printer. Now she, Eliana Weinstein, is gearing up to launch the Cocoa Press 3D printer to the public.

In our original article about the Cocoa Press, I waxed poetic about the clever engineering that went into the machine. Aggressive cooling is imperative, because chocolate begins to liquefy at such a low temperature — we've all had chocolate melt in our hands. Weinstein utilized six thermoelectric Peltier cooling units in that design, but it seems that those have been omitted in the current version to make the build simpler. Instead, it relies on the chocolate formulation and ambient air cooling to solidify the print.

To ready the Cocoa Press for production, Weinstein collaborated with RCF (RussianCatFood), the creator of Voron Design. If you aren't familiar, Voron's CoreXY 3D printers are some of the most well-regarded in the 3D printing community. The current iteration of the Cocoa Press seems to take many design queues from Voron printers, including the CoreXY kinematic system. But it isn't a Voron with a chocolate-squirting syringe attached; it is its own thing.

The design is attractive and the center piece is the purpose-built chocolate extruder. That accepts chocolate "cores" of 70g, which gives you an upper limit on how much you can print in one go. Those cores will be available from Cocoa Press (made using their optimized formulation) and you can also experiment with your own mixes if you're a confectioner trying to achieve a certain flavor. The build volume is 140 x 150 x 150mm and the nozzle is 0.8mm. The nozzle diameter may seem large, but it makes sense when printing chocolate.

You can reserve a Cocoa Press machine right now with a $100 deposit. Then, when your unit ships (hopefully later this year), you can pay the remainder of the balance. The total price for the kit is $1,499 and a professional assembled package starts at $3,995.

The kit price is similar to what you'd pay for a nice Voron kit, and is downright generous when you consider how much R&D has gone into the Cocoa Press. Weinstein started work on the Cocoa Press way back in 2014, when she was still in high school. She continued that development through high school, engineering school at Penn State, and now for years after her graduation. Almost a decade of work has brought Cocoa Press to this point, and we're very happy to see it ready for customer reservation.

Cocoa Press is perfect for professional confectioners, bakers, and hobbyists who want to create unique chocolates. It works with standard open source slicers and 3D files, so Cocoa Press owners can print any file they find online or create their own. With this machine, it is no longer necessary to fabricate complicated molds for every design. Instead, you can print whatever chocolate designs you want without any laborious preparation.

Cameron Coward
Writer for Hackster News. Proud husband and dog dad. Maker and serial hobbyist. Check out my YouTube channel: Serial Hobbyism
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