Sep 23, 2014

West Australian start-up Aurora Labs today releases their metal 3D printer for the consumer market on Kickstarter.

Aurora Labs' S1 consumer grade printer offers aerospace grade 3D printing - down to the resolution of half a human hair (50 microns) - for under $4000. The S1 features a build volume of 150 x 150 x 250 mm (6'x6'x10') and currently is capable of printing objects in stainless steel and nickel based alloys.

The process works by feeding metal powder into a high energy beam heating the powder to around 1600 Celsius where it melts. The printer lays down molten metal layer by layer to produce the product.

Acute Angle Printing

3D Printed Bottle Opener

"With this machine people can build a 10,000 pound (4,500 kg) thrust rocket motor – for about the price of a plasma TV ($500-$1,000) in materials." notes the team on Kickstarter page.

"Affordable 3D metal printing means we are on the cusp of a manufacturing revolution. The list of what we can make is literally endless, from car parts to tools to rocket motors," said Aurora managing director David Budge.

To make the S1, Mr Budge assembled a team of welders, computer scientists, physicists and engineers. His own interest lies in robotic manufacturing and exotic welding systems. The machine combines techniques used in CNC machining, automated welding and robotic welding. The breakthrough in price has been made possible through use of robot manufacturing processes and proprietary new technology developed in-house. The S1 can print multiple metals at the same time, and Aurora Labs expects to be able to print ceramics and plastics as well.

The team is launching a Kickstarter campaign to raise $100,000 to bring the S1 to market. The first 25 early backers would receive this S1 3D printer and 5kg of 316 stainless steel for AUD$4,499 (USD3,995). Check out more info here on Kickstarter.

"For me, this project is about creativity in its purest form. We are creating something that will allow people to create amazing things," said Mr Budge.

Posted in 3D Printers

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TheHedster wrote at 7/4/2017 6:27:20 AM:

They have one product on their website at $US49,999. So what happened to the hobbyist printer?

Bob McDave wrote at 4/20/2016 7:20:16 AM:

What about now..hahahaha

Jules Nijst wrote at 10/14/2014 11:03:23 AM:

And now they have left Kickstarter... That means no way to get your money back if it collapses... Feels like a scam indeed, the non-answers and focus on what you could do with it, well we all know that, we don't need any elaboration of that. BUT I hope that I am wrong and these guys will make it, because that would be great, sometimes when a thing sounds too good to be true, most of the times it is... Jules

PinkAsso wrote at 10/4/2014 3:06:47 AM:

seems kickstarter has killed or the project leader killed it.

AF wrote at 10/2/2014 3:56:44 AM:

This has all the makings of a scam, didn't show one thing clearly being printed on their printer which is probably the MOST important thing to show. Blurry images of lasers and metal got all these kickstarters forking over thousands.

Brad wrote at 9/30/2014 11:11:52 AM:

Sounds like someone has maybe tried this technology and perhaps failed. Hence the reluctance to let them get to the stage of production and seeing real results.

Steve_C wrote at 9/29/2014 5:16:14 AM:

Actually, @If they print more then maybe... I'd be bitter if I spent $4k US on their printer. What I get out of my fellow Aussies, is a good laugh! Now if only they could sell the stuff that's convinced them to market their idea a marketing video and pitch that could have been produced by the guys that made "the Office", they'd be on a sure fire winner!

ti tig welder wrote at 9/28/2014 10:05:42 AM:

Latest update says it prints titanium, thats a big statement. How are they going to shield the edges. Is the cabinet a habitat because it would have to be. I cannot see a ti print on their site.

If they print more then maybe wrote at 9/28/2014 9:18:33 AM:

Looks like a micro 3d metal printer to me, like others have said it will take a while to print just about anything. I would like to see a nut get printed, and watch them screw it onto a thread. Good effort for the price, not sure what people expect for 4,000usd. I think they have over sold the product. Is it for little ornamental trinkets or does it build complex threads? Regardless its still a formidable achievement. Surely there are now lots of people out there that are saying, if they can do it, so can I. Another company is going to produce a better product, that costs a lot more. Lets face it, the 3 of them, barely have a dollar between them, I think that is clear from the videos. They have probably maxed out all their credit cards to get this far. If they can produce more prints, at 4k I will be very interested even if they are trinkets rather than complex components. This is a huge leap, never thought I would see it in my time. Can they come up with the goods?????? Steve C, your showing your age with your final line. Manfred Man ha ha. My daughter studies drama, she has had me in tears taking the mickey out of your post. Thanks for the laugh, and maybe stop being so bitter, its not good for your heart.

Steve_C wrote at 9/27/2014 3:14:46 AM:

Dear oh dear... I've met quite a few fellow Aussies like these. It's almost a bit embarrassing to admit I come from the same Country/Nation/Continent. Actually it's even embarrassing to admit I'm from the same planet; let alone Galaxy, let alone Universe as this crew of Antipodeans who've surely got to be imbibing some form of hallucinatory chemicals!!! Maybe they looked into that extremely bright, out of focus light they videoed so incredibly poorly, for way too long!!! They were "blinded by the light, revved up like a deuce, another runner in the night, madman drummers bummers!!!"

Not Convinced wrote at 9/26/2014 6:45:01 AM:

I smell something very fishy here. The system they are using was covered under patents in the 1980's, now expired. However, the powder feed laser melted system (basically the LENS process) is still very expensive (powder feed tubes and support systems) and the laser to do this is not cheap. I observed that they are printing VERY small parts, so they could get away with a lower power laser. Look at their print next to the coin. I am fairly positive they did NOT print those copper parts, definitely not on their system. Copper takes ALOT of power and that they do not have. Agree with comments below, blurry, no prints shown, missing details, no way to costs of printer, and a poor video for such a "revolutionary" product.

mattw wrote at 9/26/2014 4:14:23 AM:

Their latest video claims 500W to run everything including cooling. Not only is it a scam, they're pretty up front that they have no idea what they're talking about.

Not Sure wrote at 9/26/2014 1:42:52 AM:

Its legit technology, a Co2 laser tube could easily be installed in a printing device, using CO2 laser mirrors and could buy the gear off google in the next 5 minutes. Getting all that and an optics chiller etc... inside a smallish metal box must be interesting. How do you do that for that for 5K The software and communication between the motors and laser on/off is lightening speed. The parts look so small, it would take some time to make even a small part. Its really impressive for these guys to achieve so much on such a small budget. Even if it is slow and a bit rough around the edges. Imagine where this company could be in 5 years and what they could achieve with some real financial backing. I would love one of these in my shed, WHY who cares, I hope the software allows you to draw and create your own stuff, the possibilities are endless

3DHappy wrote at 9/25/2014 8:46:43 PM:

2 prints displayed leaves me questioning the promise. However I will watch with optimistic anticipation. I'd suggest they learn from B9 Creator.

Pinkasso wrote at 9/25/2014 2:06:50 AM:

China does sell clones of the ipg fiber laser starting at $3k but you still need a ton of other support hardware plus the chamber to put it in so you can flood it was a shielding gas. But I still get a scam feeling from these guys.

sam wrote at 9/25/2014 1:20:36 AM:

can it get any more dodgy ???blurry video shots, no actual machine/product... it smells like BS

Matt Renna wrote at 9/24/2014 8:36:46 PM:

I agree with Ben. Whole thing looks very suspect.

JC wrote at 9/24/2014 7:05:40 PM:

Edit: Sorry for the typo, I suppose you will have---presuming there are no major and/or lingering hiccups---a large backing on this. This should be in the kickstarter phase and thereafter. I should be one of the backers.

Ben wrote at 9/24/2014 4:15:49 PM:

This is not legit. you cant put a co2 laser on a robot arm and you cant buy a fiber laser for 5000. the finished product has to be sawed off a build plate and the bottle opener had no provision for this. every single important shot is intentionally blurry.

Tobias R. wrote at 9/24/2014 10:20:27 AM:

Worst promotional video ever...

PinkAsso wrote at 9/23/2014 10:55:29 PM:

feels like a scam and if not will get sued to stop release because of locked up patents

Adam wrote at 9/23/2014 9:48:14 PM:

This is the holy-grail

Henny Bogan wrote at 9/23/2014 7:38:28 PM:

They can make a nice printer, but can't control the volume of the music in their video....

JC wrote at 9/23/2014 7:12:31 PM:

I suppose you will have---resuming there are no major and/or lingering hiccups---a large backing on this. This should be in the kickstarter phase and thereafter. I should be one of them.

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