April 24, 2014

4 AXYZ, a startup which plans to offer consumers an affordable way to get custom, high-quality wood furniture within days of order, has just launched a campaign on Indiegogo.

The 4 AXYZ 3D machine uses stratified additive manufacturing to build 3D wood. It works by combining small, uniformly-cut pieces of wood and securing the layers together with a special binding process. This process minimizes the high labor cost and offers consumers an affordable way to get customizable furniture. Consumers would have a choice to use different material, different color, to add any kind of personlized details. Using this technique designers would be allowed to tweak, change, modify their design simply in the CAD software. It would be much easier for interior designers to customize furniture orders.

A more exciting possibility is to be able to print "smart wood" for home automation. Because wood provides casing and insulation, 4 AXYZ hopes to embed electronics, sensors and conductive metals inside additively manufactured wood objects to make it smarter. For example they can print 'smart' windows which has embedded sensors capable of detecting atmospheric or temperature change. The windows are linked to your thermostat which is linked to your phone-app so you can control them from distance.

4 AXYZ says it has invested $300,000 towards R&D and will need $1.5 million to buy the 3D machine, and another US$500,000 for further development of CAD, expansion of IP, inventory and material's R&D. It will get half the amount from stalwarts in the furniture industry, and the company is raising the remaining $1 million on Indiegogo.

This is what an industrial 3D Wood machine looks like:

Images: IMA AG Asia Pacific Pte. Ltd.

Backers can choose items like 3D printed photo frames, wooden wall clock, lounge chair ($500), dining sets ($3,000), tables' set ($6,500) or commissioned wall panel for $10,000.

Posted in 3D Printers

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Skeptic wrote at 5/9/2014 10:09:23 PM:

Smoke and Mirrors There is no meat or any details in this video which is a huge red flag that there is nothing there

bobc wrote at 4/29/2014 10:37:08 AM:

This is not progress, it is pure hype. Whatever next, "3D snake oil"? Making wood objects in layers plus glue has been done for decades. It's not very good. Still, if you can get the public to pay for a fancy $1M CNC machine, why not.

JP wrote at 4/28/2014 7:03:46 PM:

Yes that's correct. It's not printing. It's MANUFACTURING. Using the layer wise concept to additively create shapes and make real, truly useful, things that were otherwise impossible to do before. RepRap is one thing, making real things on an industrial scale additively is another. Great work 4AXYZ, nice to see the progress!

kdw wrote at 4/25/2014 2:54:36 AM:

Interesting idea but yeah much hype and no explanation of the actual process. Are layers pre-cut from substrate like in Laminated Object Manufacturing process? If so, there is still waste.. Or glued from strips of varying width?

Cassidy wrote at 4/24/2014 11:33:42 PM:

Sounds like a scam to me. The video is all fluff and buzz words, and no substance. I've invested $300,000 into this post, although I haven't paid myself the $5,000,000/hr salary I charge. There hasn't been any money invested, only time with a dollar figure attached. I had real hopes when I heard about this, but turns out there is nothing behind the wood dust.

4 AXYZ wrote at 4/24/2014 6:44:30 PM:

We do not call it 3d Printing. It is additive manufacturing. We DO use the 5-AXIS router, but only to clean up the minimally prepared, objects where we do not cut from sheets and waste material. With plywood CNC you waste material from off cuts, but we "build" the wood from only as much material as needed at each layer. Hope this helps.

jd90 wrote at 4/24/2014 3:42:47 PM:

THAT'S NOT PRINTING! This is a a fairly traditional technique. It's like calling plywood additive manufacturing. It is... but not in the same way as 3D printing. Then they have a last step of a 5 axis router doing subtractive work. What the hell is wrong with these people?

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