KHD X3 espresso review

Everyone knows how printers work (more or less): A computer program reads a file and uses its instructions to tell a printer to spray differently colored inks onto a piece of paper in specific places as the paper rolls by underneath. 3D printing is both just like that and also totally different. There’s still a program on a computer and a file with printing instructions, but instead of ink and paper the printer “prints” in layers of plastic. There are actually several different technologies that get lumped under “3D printing” but the most common is one where a machine lays down extraordinarily thin layers of plastic. Just like the head of a conventional printer, many passes are made, one over another, until the object is rendered. The smaller the particle being produced, the higher the “resolution” of the printer. Just like with ink, higher resolution results in greater detail and smoother lines.

3D printers are still pretty expensive. There are many more people with ideas of objects that can be made using them (and people willing to buy those objects) than there are printers. That’s where a company like Shapeways comes in. They have the printers and the infrastructure to list a creator’s item online, accept payment, and then ship the goods once they’re printed up. No inventory since it’s all manufactured on-demand. Want to mount your FitBit on your watch? Someone else did, too, and there’s just what you’re looking for on Shapeways. Lots of weird custom things only a small group of enthusiasts might want which makes them perfect for a print-on-demand type service. Yes, this is the future we’re talking about, but it’s happening right now.

Usually on the internet, one of the first and most profitable applications for new technology involves sex. Things like online video and browser-based credit card transactions were pioneered by the adult industry. So it’s somewhat a surprise to me that there aren’t a ton of 3D printed sex toys out there. Search for “dildo” on the Shapeways site and only two come up. Search for “chastity” and you get nothing.

But, there are chastity devices there. In particular, one that’s getting some attention lately called the KHD X3 espresso.

The typical NSFW images leave the rest of this after a jump…

Welcome to the future

FullSizeRender 10In theory, 3D printing technology could open the door to chastity for a lot more people. Most (relatively) affordable devices worth the time to wear are made of plastic but they’re also made like clothing: A few sizes fit most. Even the most popular — the CB-6000 — with all those ring, spacer, and tube size combinations still can’t fit a lot of guys. To get a custom-fit device, one needs to have it made from metal which is a lot more expensive and time consuming. The promise of 3D printing is a basic design tweaked to fit a specific person, manufactured out of affordable, light and security device-friendly material, delivered in a fraction of the time.

Unfortunately, we are not quite there yet. The KHD X3 is available in five tube sizes from 75mm to 135mm and a single A-ring size. The dimensions of the A-ring aren’t specified, but I measured it to be just under 3″ (74mm) across in the back and 2″ (50mm) tall. The A-ring is not unlike that found on the Holy Trainer in that regard. That lack of customization is, I assume, due to the economics of 3D printing I mentioned above. The designer of the device (who calls himself pedro69 on Shapeways) doesn’t own the manufacturing, Shapeways does. Some day, someone might have the ability to design a device and fit it to a person based on their custom measurements and make it, but if such a person exists right now I’m not aware of them.

The biggest drawback, though, of the KHD X3 is the material from which it’s made. It’s described as “Polyamide, a non-toxic bio-compatible nylon” and as having an “eggshell” texture but I’d just say it’s rough. Sort of like a medium grit sandpaper. Not so rough as to be unwearable, but I could feel it most noticeably underneath my scrotum. I wore it for a total of about three days and took one 1.4 mile run in it and didn’t develop any sore spots, but it’s very different than wearing something like the Holy Trainer or Steelheart. Even so, the space-aged design of the ring only serves to make the CB-6000 look even more antiquated. Even with a rough texture, the KHD X3 is significantly more comfortable than the sharp-edged and unforgiving CB6K.

I evaluate chastity devices by five criteria: Cost, aesthetic, fit/comfort, security, hygiene, and stealth. Let’s get down to business…

Cost

What you get in the box

This is the best part of the KHD X3: It’s really affordable. Based on the size of the tube, it ranges from $80 to $90. Included in the cost is the tube, A-ring, two locking pins and one brass lock adapter. Shapeways offers a variety of shipping speeds, the cheapest of which is $5 and the most expensive $15.50. You can even pop for gift wrapping ($4 extra). Compared that to the CB6K at $150 and the Holy Trainer at $170 (both before shipping).

I opted for the 90mm KHD X3 in red which rang up at $83 (minus shipping). I really like that each incremental size increase costs a little more. Those of us who need less pay less. Wouldn’t it be interesting if things like clothing and airfare were priced the same? Wonder how that would impact obesity rates? But I digress…

Bottom line, the KHD X3 is, all things being equal, a very good value. But not all things are equal.

Aesthetic

Shields up, Sulu!
Shields up, Sulu!

As usual, this is totally objective. On Twitter, I likened the KHD X3 to a baby Klingon bird of prey while others think it looks like the chastity version of a pair of Crocs. When I gave my followers a peek at it, the reaction was overwhelmingly negative. I suspect they were reacting to the color mostly, but the design of it is also polarizing. Belle’s not a fan but she hates red (which is funny since my iPhone case is red, my iPad cover is red, and my iPad and MacBook sleeves are both red and gray along with my wallet).

Personally, I kind of dig its futuristic lines. I know I dump on the CB-6000 a lot, but it looks like a Chrysler K car next to the KHD X3’s Lamborghini Diablo (vs. the Holy Trainer’s Ford Taurus, just to round out the similes). I kept finding my hands down in my pants tracing over its swooping lines.

One thing I’m not a fan of is the end of its tube. Too pointy for my taste. I’d prefer something akin to the shape of the Holy Trainer and CB-6000. Also, the circular pattern of little holes with the logo in the middle. Just a little tacky, IMO. Press on the circle and it feels like you could easily pop the disk out along the perforation. The blocky shape of where the locking pin goes is also not as elegant as the rest of the device. Overall, though, I’m a fan and hope to see more distinctiveness of this kind in the plastic segment of the market. Life is too short to wear ugly chastity devices.

Fit & Comfort

As I said above, there are five tube length options: 75mm, 90mm, 105mm, 120mm and 135mm. This is more than you’ll usually find. Both the CB-6000 and Holy Trainer only offer two. I ordered what was the smallest at the time (3.54″ / 90mm) because it was very close in length to the Trainer I recently wore. Since then, an even smaller size (2.95″ / 75mm) has been introduced as a “beta” option. The internal tube measurements aren’t given, but they’re very similar to the Holy Trainer (which seems a bit more snug all around than the CB-6000)..

You can order the KHD X3 in eight colors: white, blue, purple, red, pink, yellow, green and orange. I ordered red, though I nearly got the blue. In any event, that’s far more color choices than any other device, even the CB6K and all its finishes. Also, these colors are bright. The red is so red my iPhone’s camera has a hard time capturing it without shifting into fluorescent-looking shades.

The A-ring is flared and quite wide. It’s just under 3″ wide (74mm) in back but a tad wider in front (about 3 1/16″ / 77mm). The inside height appears to be 2″ (50mm) in both the front and back.  Also, like a lot of the newer devices, it’s anatomically shaped so the bottom of the ring is further forward than the top. Because the tube inserts into the ring and takes up some space (again, not unlike the Holy Trainer), it’s difficult to say exactly what size it is. Guys with thicker erections than mine should be OK, but it’s hard for me to say exactly how much bigger. Also, as I said, the tube takes up some space inside the ring. A lot more than any other device I’ve worn. I could easily get my fingers through the gap it left.

I found the A-ring size and shape to be very comfortable (issues of texture will be discussed in a moment). The width of the ring combined with the somewhat extreme difference in horizontal size versus vertical size left me feeling as though my scrotum was being flattened out. Not in an unpleasant way at all, just differently than other devices I’ve worn. There was zero testicular pain associated with erections while wearing the KHD X3 though I did experience a significant twinge at climbing out of Belle’s car after parking it. My right testicle wanted to retract and the ring wouldn’t let it. That was the only time that happened.

I ran for 15 minutes while wearing the KHD X3 and could barely feel that it was there. The nylon plastic is extremely light.

My one real issue with the device is the rough “eggshell” texture. As I said above, I was never worn sore by it. Even the run didn’t seem to cause any rubbing injury. All that said, I could often feel the roughness of the surface, especially under my scrotum. I didn’t care for that.

So, in short, the extreme light weight, multiple tube length options and well-designed shape of the A-ring make the KHD X3 potentially very comfortable but the texture of the nylon plastic was distracting.

Security

The KHD X3 comes with two locking options. One is a simple pin meant to slide into the device to hold the tube and the A-ring together. The end of the pin extends beyond its fitting and a small hole is exposed where a small lock or plastic numbered security tag can be fitted. The other option is a very thin adapter sleeve designed to fit into the pinhole that allows the same kind of vertical brass carpentry lock found on the Holy Trainer and Steelworxx devices to fit. The lock is not included (but, luckily, we have about a hundred of them around the house).

Once secured together, there’s a fair bit of play between the tube and the A-ring. More so with the pin in place than the brass lock. I assume the rough texture of the surface doesn’t allow for really tight tolerances between the pieces (it feels not unlike sliding one piece of stone into another, only much lighter).

Mind the gap
Mind the gap

Of course, the KHD X3 is a trapped-ball style device with no option for securing a piercing, so it’s no more secure than any other device of its kind (which means it’s entirely insecure and be quite easily defeated but not entirely removed). There is a slot in the bottom of the tube I assume is to aid in the drainage of urine and I suppose a higher gauged PA ring could be fitted through there, but I didn’t try it. Any ring that’s small enough to get through would also be easily removed by popping the ball out by hand, so why bother?

Interestingly, the roughness of the finish means you can slide the pin in and simple surface friction of the pieces is enough to hold them together pretty well. No, it’s in no way secure and all quite easily removed, but if you’re only interested in being locked (or locking) for a play session or scene, it’s fairly convenient.

Hygiene

This is another place where the rough finish of the nylon plastic causes issues. I found the textured surface allowed far more urine to be trapped than would have been the case in smooth plastic or steel. Also, after a day’s wearing or so, various parts that are in constant contact with the skin have dead skin cells and oil embedded into them (so much so that they were difficult to remove even soap and warm water — this is visible in some of the images here if you look at them full-res).

Say, "AHHHH!"The underside of the tube has a little slot designed into it (looks a lot like a mouth, to me) that helps with drainage, but I found my balls to be pretty well drenched after peeing. The retention of urine due to the surface texture, though, makes that slot a necessity. Note that my PA piercing likely made this situation much worse. The extra hole put urine back and further up the tube than non-pierced guys would have to deal with and made the mess that much messier.

I noticed that the bright red color of the device I wore seem to be fading after only a few days of wear where it came in regular contact with urine. This is somewhat visible in the images I’ve posted along with my review but more noticeable in person.

I should note that the description of the KHD X3 on the Shapeways site says the white color is smoother than the others though I wonder about discoloration. A bright and shiny white device is one thing but one that’s a dingy beige underneath is another.

Bottom line, the material and finish mean that the KHD X3 needs to be cleaned more frequently and thoroughly than other plastic or metal devices.

Stealth

The KHD X3 is totally silent. There is a bit of play in the pieces, but they make no noise whatsoever. Also, the profile of the device, even with the gap between the A-ring and tube, is very flat. This device lays flatter than any other I’ve worn. At the gym, it was totally imperceptible unless my legs were open and the material of my shorts pulled tight across the inside of my crotch. Then, the relatively pointy tip of the tube looked a little out of place. Since the device is so light, there’s no unusual sway or visible motion I often find with the much heavier Steelheart.

The KHD X3 is one of the stealthiest devices I’ve worn.

Conclusions

Processed with VSCOcam with a9 presetThe KHD X3 espresso is a device I want to like very much. The innovative manufacturing techniques and what they promise along with what I think is pretty cool styling combined with good comfort and stealth all add a lot to the plus column. However, due to its rough finish, I can’t recommend it for extended wear. At best, it’s well suited for short-term wear (think several hours to about a day), not the kind of time I typically put in.

In the future, printer resolution will increase and prices will drop so that better finishes and more customization can be achieved. When that day comes, I can imagine a huge proliferation of devices of this kind. Until then, the KHD X3 is a fascinating study in what someday might be.

21 thoughts on “KHD X3 espresso review

  1. Is the material pliable? I.e., how does it compare to the rigid polycarbonate of the CBs and the squishiness of the BL’s silicone?

  2. Well shucks. I was super excited about this device, but it sounds like it’s not right for me (I’m a days-to-weeks wearer, most of the time). Neat and promising application for sexy 3D printing, though!

  3. With 3D printing it’s actually quite a common practice for manufacturers to sand and polish products as part of the finishing process. And it’s quite easy to do with nylon. I’m surprised this isn’t standard, or at least an option, given the nature of the product. It must be something they’re working on.

    Overall this has real potential given the opportunity for such nuanced customization. I’m excited for future iterations. And black colour.

    Really pleased you did a review on this – was looking forward to learning more after seeing it on your twitter feed. Thanks for once again being a comprehensive encyclopedia on all things chastity.

  4. Thanks for the review! I attended a great panel on 3d printing, where they said “finishing steps” is one of the dirty little secrets. There are many raw materials being 3d printed, and if one is printing a serious industrial or consumer product, there are often many finishing steps, often involving toxic chemicals, heat and mechanical smoothing, which increase cost & environmental issues. But still, it’s all quite amazing!

    Here’s a 3d company offering free polishing for a time:

    http://3dprintingindustry.com/2013/02/26/i-materialise-introduces-polished-polyamide-for-3d-printed-parts-free-for-a-month/

    Shapeways website has instructions for varnishing & painting. And says some of their materials are porous.
    http://www.shapeways.com/tutorials/painting3dprintedsls

    I have machined flat plastic sheet, and then oven- molded some chastity parts using HDPE and polycarbonate, and heating smoothes the surface imperfections nicely. Might be an option? But warping & melting are serious concerns.

  5. Hello, I’m Pedro, AKA Pedro69.

    Thank you Thumper for review, very stimulating for my work.

    You cannot find dildo/chastity in shapeways because they are deleted by the staff ( see http://www.shapeways.com/legal/content_policy @ point 3)
    The circular pattern of little holes is added to bypass this limit. I’m looking for a new idea about the blocky shape, I can change this in the future.

    @boyc
    Yes,
    I tryed some test with 320-400 grit in the water with good results.
    It’s simply and fast to handle, I take less than 1 minute to polish both internal parts.

    thanks

  6. Chaste Hubby – 95% sure it’s a hard type of plastic with little “give.”

    Thank you to Thumper for the review and Pedro for the reply!

    i really love that it has all the air holes. my dicklet sweats, which causes the skin to get irritated easily (and has caused infections). -boy c

  7. Hi Thumper – I’m a long time reader and love your blog. You mentioned in your posting that you have “about 100” of the vertical brass carpentry locks that you used to fit the Holy Trainer Mark II – Can you please let me know where to buy there? I have a broken lock from my Steelworxx device and can’t find them anywhere.

    Thanks in advance!

    1. Hello Pedro, I was (and still am) very curious about your 3-D Printed chastity devices, and the new design looks even better than the existing one. I hope you’ll be making it available for ordering in the future 🙂

  8. This looks amazing. That red color is stunning. I might have to give it a try. I’m not sure how I feel about the nylon materiel. I wonder how it would look if it were printed in ABS.

  9. Interesting but I don’t think any polymer will have better for long term wearing characteristics than medical grade stainless steel or titanium. Plastic inherently causes more friction with the skin, polymers are absorbent so will stink in a relatively short time. Finally, plastic polymers can and will crack over long term usage, so are dangerous for long term use. I don’t see this technology ever putting MatureMetal or Steelwerks out of business.

  10. Thanks for the review of the KHD X3 espresso, Thumper, and more importantly, thanks for your Blog – a tremendous service to those interested in male chastity / orgasm control!

    In your review, you noted the slot on the underside of the tube. I do not – yet – own a X3, but my understanding is that that slot is intended as a security feature. The idea, I believe, is that part of a neoprene o ring would be inserted into the tube through that slot, then, once the penis was inserted into the tube, the o ring would be pulled snug behind the corona, the o ring would be pulled over the tip of the tube and the distal end of the o ring would then be inserted in the grove provided in the top surface of the tube portion of the lock; then, when the tube and A ring are mated, that end of the o ring would be inaccessible. Obviously, if this worked at all, it would work as a proof of integrity – much as a plastic seal; sure, one could easily cut the o ring off, but it would be impossible to replace unless the device were unlocked.

    If my understanding is correct, how secure would this be? Would it be possible to prevent pull out and still not cut off blood flow to the glans? And, given the rough texture of the device, how tolerable would it be to have an o ring forcing the underside of the penis just inboard of the glans against the inside of the tube?

    While I’m writing, it appears from my perusal of the X3 listing at Shapeways that there is now yet another tube length – 65mm – and a smaller (by 3/8″ in width) A ring (you have to order the components of the X3 “a la carte” to get the 65mm tube or the smaller A ring); had that option for a smaller A ring existed at the time of your purchase, might you have gone with the smaller A ring?

    Thanks, again!

    1. I’m dubious of anything that purports to provide security via friction or by making the tube tighter. It’s really just more of a deterrent than anything else.

      Had there been a smaller ring, yes, I might have bought it.

  11. Thumper, First and foremost, Your review is awesome! One thing that i noted was that you said the following about the device:

    “My one real issue with the device is the rough “eggshell” texture. As I said above, I was never worn sore by it. Even the run didn’t seem to cause any rubbing injury. All that said, I could often feel the roughness of the surface, especially under my scrotum. I didn’t care for that.”

    Not actually having my own device as of right now, i would based on what i have seen and read offer this suggestion. You might want to consider making a small leather “Shield” that can be easily slid between the bottom of the cock tube and your balls. The shield would only need to cum up about half way on the sides, and have one or two straps that go over the top of the tube and either snap or Velcro closed to hold the shield in place. This way when you shower you could easily remove the shield from the device to keep it dry, but have it in place at all other times to keep the textured surface caused by the holes from irritating your balls. I think i am going to try this when i eventually get my device.

  12. Your review inspired me to give this device a try. I’ve only tried a CB 6000 previously, but been unable to wear it overnight no matter how many times I’ve tried: the back of the tube acted as though it wanted to cut me off like a cigar cutter.

    This device is MUCH more comfortable, and I slept almost through the night the first night. While 12 hours was abouth the limit for the old CB, I’ve managed to wear this one for thee days. I could have worn it longer, but since it was the first time I’d worn any device for that length of time I got nervous and removed it – I was concerned that I might have raw spots that I couldn’t see of feel with it installed. There were none when I removed it.

    I found hygeine to be very easy. A q-tip allowed me to make sure everything was lined up properly before I started, and was able to aim well enough to stand. A handheld shower head let me keep clean: unscrewing the head let me direct the stream from the hose in the front, back, bottom and sides and I found no objectionable buildup after three days.

    Service was fantastic. Mine arrived with a small crack, and an email was all it took to get another one shipped free of charge.

    I’m considering a slightly larger size – width, not length. and Pedro has been very helpful. I think that with a little bit of marketing, this could easily take over the introductory market from CBx.

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