Aug. 25, 2014

Back in May, Columbus, Ohio based Sculptify announced the development of an innovative personal 3D printer, which allows users to "print with limitless material options." Sculptify's 'David' 3D printer works with pelletized plastic instead of standard filament, using a new 3D printing method called FLEX - Fused Layer Extrusion.

"We want to make 3D printing easier for everyday use but also expand versatility for enthusiasts and professionals," said Slade Simpson, Sculptify Co-Founder and CEO. "Our goal is to deliver a 3D printing system which offers a wide range of printing materials at significantly reduced cost. We'll be able to print using many different types of thermoplastics."

This 2-clolor print was created directly from PLA pellets

David can print objects using a number of soft and flexible materials, like TPU and EVA, standard hard materials, like PLA and ABS, and even some interesting composites, like wood. David's latest test was to extrude a common plastic bag and the result was quite well, check out the video below. The implications here are quite large if in fact recycling is a possibility with a 3D printer.

Pelletized plastic is the raw material typically used to mass-produced consumer products. They are affordable, and have a variety of choices ranging from hard and durable, to soft and flexible. For instance, Sculptify will sell 1kg of PLA pellets for $18. This price is much cheaper than 1kg of PLA filament, which typically costs $30 to $40. "Using pellets allows for access to a wide variety of unadulterated materials, stripped of several layers of cost and time. In short, you get to print with higher quality materials, for less money," wrote the Sculptify team on their Kickstarter campaign page.

Sculptify will be selling pellets for PLA, ABS, TPU, EVA as well as nylon and wood composite. Sculptify says that it does not require proprietary materials from itself, but the grades, sizes, and shapes of its pellets are optimal for use with David.

The David 3D Printer project is currently looking to raise $100,000 pledges on Kickdstarter for its production. The retail price for David will be $3,195, but Early Bird backers can get it for $2,745 on Kickstarter. As of writing Sculptify has raised $54,808 from 71 backers. The company expects to ship out the first units by April 2015.


Posted in 3D Printers

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