Support Us Button Widget

Black Buffalo 3D prints new home in south Fort Worth

Black Buffalo 3D is creating the world’s first 3D-printed, ICC-ES-compliant home with proprietary technology and materials in south Fort Worth.

FTW-3d-printed-concrete-printing

Construction crews just add water to the dry “concrete ink” — like Bisquick for buildings.

Photo by FTWtoday

And we thought the housing market moved fast — a new home is rising in south Fort Worth in less than two days thanks to new 3D-printing technology from Black Buffalo 3D.

The New Jersey-based construction company started work yesterday on LoMa, a pilot home at 100 W. Bolt St. named for the low-maintenance nature of its construction process. Designed by Dallas-based Boxer Property, LoMa will be the first home with load-bearing, 3D-printed walls to be approved by the International Code Council Evaluation Service.

We stopped by the construction site to get a first-hand look at the printing.

FTW-3d-printer-framework

The crew will print half of the house, then extend the tracks and move the printer to build the other half.

Photo by FTWtoday

How does it work?

Black Buffalo 3D is using its proprietary NEXCON printer — a yellow robotic tool mounted on a large metal framework that moves on a guided track around the home. The printer extrudes proprietary Planitop 3D “concrete ink,” which is 3.5 times stronger than traditional concrete.

The cement-based product — developed in collaboration with Mapei — is shipped to the site dry and then mixed with water. The printer uses a digital file to route around the walls, pouring a thin layer of concrete, which sets within two minutes. The crew adds a thin metal lattice after every nine layers for stability.

The NEXCON printer can build the walls of a 40-ft by 40-ft house in under 30 hours and needs four crew members to set up + monitor the mostly automated process.

FTW-3d-printed-concrete-layers

The concrete layers serve as both the structure and the finish material, which can be painted for different designs.

Photo by FTWtoday

Home features

The home was designed for easy maintenance and upkeep in the future. Since the walls are harder than concrete, all electrical and plumbing features will be mounted on the interior, so they can be accessed in the future.

“This home will showcase the benefits of structural 3D construction including efficiency, low cost of ownership, and the ability to withstand natural and manmade disasters,” Mike Miceli, CEO of Black Buffalo 3D, said in a press release.

More from FTWtoday