Given the amount of enthusiasm people haves shown for this project with their wallets, it seems like the world wants an affordable 3D printer. I am of the persuasion that you get what you pay for, but if a printer can be successfully developed and work well for this price point, then it's a great breakthrough for the 3D printing market. I'd have to see it to believe it, though.
I agree, Liz. You get what you pay for. But I do view this as a small step in the affordability improvements in 3D printing. At some point, I believe reliable, useful 3D printers will be affordable for the average household.
@Charles: Yes if you consider the process of a product lifecycle that is a possibility but Im not sure that it will happen soon. Still the technology is new and it will take some good slot of time for it to reach the dying stage
Yes, Chuck, I hate to be skeptical, and the video looks impressive, but I just wouldn't believe this is high-quality until I saw evidence of it myself. But you're right, it's good that inventors are working on the affordability angle for 3D printers and for sure some day one will be in nearly every home just like 2D ones are now.
Well, it's not technologically imposible, although that price point is one heck of a hurdle to get over. On the other hand, the huge funding response might make it easier to achieve economies of scale.
The galvo motors are similar to what hard drives use to position their read/write heads. And as odd as it may sound, the sound card is a very good digital-to-analog converter. So in theory, this can work. It's quite a clever set of hacks, relying mostly on proven technologies, albeit being used in very nonconventional ways.
The hard parts will be the tuning. Getting the laser sweep distances to match the desired print dimensions will be tricky; the laser mount will need to be perfectly level *and* at exactly the correct height above the surface of the liquid. And getting a solid measurement of the actual liquid depth will be very finicky, and probably dangerously vulnerable to temperature changes, just to name one variable. To really make this work, some kind of easy and very robust method for setting and checking these calibrations will be absolutely required. Any collimation spread of the laser over distance would also play havoc with print accuracy as the print size increased.
That said, I signed up. For $100, it's a reasonable risk. If nothing else, it should push the state of the art in this part of the 3D-printing space.
Thats really very great that inventors are focussing on the cost factor of these 3D printers so that they become affordable for daily household purposes. Elizebeth i totally agree with you that we cant be sure if they are providing us quality however this is infact a great step in terms of cost effectivness and if they dont provide us quality definitely some one else will work into it and make the idea effective . So its a good start for the future .
I agree with you, Debera. I don't want to be seen as a complete naysayer about this. I think it sounds really promising and who knows, it could actually be just as high-quality as more expensive printers. I'm just sort of on the side of wait and see. But there is definitely value in this kind of experimentation, especially to leverage some of the more expensive parts of the printer in places in the computer where they already exist.
This reminds me of the genius of Steve Wozniak when he made a floppy disk controller for the Apple II that used only 5 chips while the rest of the industry was using 125.
He realized the Apple II computer wasn't doing anything else, why not use it as part of the controller?
This 3D printer is using the microphone and speaker ports on the computer as the active portion of the controller. This way the printer does not have to be as smart as the other 3D printers on the market. You've already purchased the expensive parts of the printer when you bought you computer that is going to control it.
Of course the problem now will be keeping the computer on task, who hasn't experienced stutter on music playback. That could be killer for your print.
I can see a new meme developing playing your favorite song and documenting the 3D printed results online.
No, wait, what about using this as a new media for mp3 file storage? Simply play the mp3 file into a 3D solid object construct and play it back with the scanning function. This makes LP's look positively 2D. Welcome to the world of 3D sound!
Wait, even more fun, you actually need two 3D constructs, one for right channel and one for left channel. Then of course there is 7.2......
That's a good comparison about Steve Wozniak, BrainiacV. I am still skeptical but your points that the inventor leveraged existing equipment to develop a printer that could be less expensive are certainly valid. This is definitely a way to make technology with the same functionality as competitive products but a less costly price tag.
Elizabeth, Your concern for the quality of the print from a $100 dollar 3D printer is confounding. It looks like this person/group has made a fundamental leap in changing the data delivery and material control mechanisms. If they are a bit crude at this point in development that is to be expected. Look at the cost/quality progression of 2D printing. The range of cost and capability of 2D printers is $100K - $100. Yet all of them make a pretty good print. This will happen with 3D printing too, but it will take time.
"Rylan Grayston set out to make the 3D printer a realistic product for the average household. In doing so, he was successful enough to invent his own efficient design that did not sacrifice quality of parts. The Peachy Printer is marketed to be a $100 3D printer with its own unique method of printing."
Cabe, $100 is the cost of the printer or cost per printing item. If it's the cost of a printer, it's very affordable.
I can't believe that guy made that at home! It sounds like it is very accurate, but it also seems (by the looks) small. I bet he can scale it up. You can't get a cell phone worth it's own for 100 bucks....great deal! I want one!
The key to all printers, 3D included is the cost of materials. Eventually they will "give away" the printers and make their money on the materials. In this particular case the cost and type of material is not mentioned in this article. Neither is the foot print and height of what you can create. The price tag is almost impossible to resist but, I'm resisting it for now.
The same could be said for 2D printing. Laser, inkjet, and dye printers all have different cost models, but they also have different capabilities. 3D printers have a wide range of material options: plastic filament, plastic resins, metals, foams, concrete, sugar, and biological materials, to name some of the more common. I have yet to see a company give away the delivery system to sell the consumables. The amazing thing about this invention is the combination of different devices to do something in a new way.
Jennifer--I certainly agree with you on this one. The $100.00 cost is low enough to give it a "shot". My first computer was a COMODORE Vic, 64K which sold for considerably more than $100.00. Even though it was "entry" level, I gained great experience just trying to overcome the various short-comings the hardware presented. (Does anyone remember tape drives?) At any rate, I'm in. The learning experience itself would be well worth the effort and cost. Excellent post Cabe.
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