Every time the topic of “trying out 3D printing in Tokyo” comes up, Fabe Cafe is mentioned amongst the locals.
Rightly so, Fabe Cafe is a wonderful place to casually try out possible high-tech fabrication processes.
Fab Cafe is conveniently located 10mins from Shibuya station, or 3mins from Shinsen station.
As the sign reads under their name, “what do you fab?” they are enthusiastic towards spreading the creative DIY fabrication culture and will happily engage with customers interested in the process. While they are a cafe, they also host events and workshops.
The hip atmosphere with wooden laser cut menus, San Francisco standard fancy coffees, organic teas, hand made baked goods, high-tech machines lined up around the counter, all together makes this café stand out from others. There are tons of outlets and free wifi for people that want to work on their laptop over some delicious drinks.
The typhoon was hitting Tokyo when I visited, but there were still a good amount of people holding meetings, working on their laptops, and coming into use the machines. There were a lot of phone calls in regards to machine availability, so it is probably wise to call ahead or make reservations via their website if your purpose of coming here is to use the machines.
The prices are not the most reasonable if you want to do a lot of fabrication, but if you would like to get used to the idea of DIY fabrication, they have great introductory kits and classes.
(Click for enlarged menu image.)
Details of available machines and kits J
I decided to try out the 3Doodler with my friend for 30mins / ￥800. This was my first time seeing the 3Doodler available for it’s use over tea, how cool is that? Reading a lot about it on the Internet but not having enough incentive to purchase it, this was a great way for me to see what the pen was capable of.
The staff comes to your table and explains how to use the 3Doodler along with examples and material differences.
Of course, us beginners naturally suffer controlling the pen… Those examples they show us are quite impressive and are probably hard to make in your first 30-minute trial.
Our drawing turned out to be as if we were drawing like 5 year olds again, which was quite a refreshing experience! It’s a great activity to do with friends and children, as my friend and I enjoyed taking turns making one drawing together. (Instagram video)
While we were finishing up on our 3D drawing, a group of people came in to start a workshop on “Laser Printing on Food” using banana peels. Imagining the crazy creative bento boxes that people make in Japan, it’s not too difficult to picture the infinite possibilities of its application. Fab Café apparently has a laser cutter machine specifically dedicated to food materials. (how cool!)
Fab Café also hosts “Fab Meet Ups” for those who want to socialize while casually learning real life fab applications through presentations, as well as serious workshops for people that want to master utilizing necessary programs for fabrication. You can check all the things happening at the café through their page.
I must say, I really enjoyed my time here as well as their drinks. My friend had their coffee, which she enjoyed very much. I’m not a coffee drinker, so I usually don’t expect too much on having good teas at places that specializes in good coffee. I was wrong though, this place serves amazing organic teas that were so delicious and worth coming back for.