Aug 9, 2017 | By Benedict

VDG Spitstechniek, the Netherlands-based company behind the ColorPod 3D printer accessory, has demonstrated how users can turn their 3D scans into full-color human busts using the ColorPod.

Full-color 3D printing is generally seen as the preserve of expensive powder bed machines, which are rarely found in the home and which are certainly out of the financial reach of the average maker. But there are a few workarounds to get color 3D printing on the cheap.

VDG Spitstechniek’s ColorPod, for example, offers users the ability to turn a standard RepRep FDM 3D printer into a full-color machine for just $350. Creator Aad van der Geest says he invented the process way back in 1992, but the tech surprisingly still seems pretty cutting-edge. We wrote about the impressive ColorPod 3D printing accessory last year.

Now, van der Geest is looking to recruit more makers to the ColorPod cause, and has posted a four-minute demonstration video showing how 3D scans can be turned into miniature 3D printed figurines in a short space of time.

Although the video doesn’t teach us anything new about the ColorPod (or offer any technical advice on how to achieve successful prints), it does serve as a timely reminder that basic color 3D printing is available even to those with the simplest single-extruder setups. The quality of the finished pieces isn’t perfect—each figurine looks like it’s gone for a lengthy walk in the snow—but their colorful nature is indisputable.

The ColorPod works by depositing a layer of powder and leveling it with a spinning roller, before a HP inkjet cartridge is used to print color onto the powder layer. A platform is lowered, and the process repeats until the model is complete.

“In its simplest form the ColorPod is just a printed circuit board and two motors,” van der Geest explains. “All other parts can be printed with a regular FDM 3D printer.”

As such, the ColorPod won’t be giving established color 3D printers a run for their money, but the device certainly offers an option for ultra-budget color printing alongside similar tools like the Mosaic Palette.

Amazingly, VDG Spitstechniek has been putting together variations of the ColorPod for around 25 years. Think it’s time for you to get your own? The device costs $349, and ships within two days. Further accessories include a $139 add-on set, a $30 Geeetech i3 connection set, and (interestingly) an $89 food printing set.

 

 

Posted in 3D Printing Technology

 

 

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