Jul 18, 2016 | By Benedict

CreateAll, a 3D printing startup based in Cincinnati, Ohio, is today launching a Kickstarter campaign for Versa3D, an easy-to-use desktop fabrication machine with 3D printing, CNC milling, and laser cutting capabilities. Early bird backers can secure the complete version of the machine for $3,499.

All-in-one desktop fabrication machines continue to divide opinion. On the one hand, having access to a 3D printer, CNC mill, and a laser cutter in one unit can be incredibly helpful in terms of minimizing workspace, speeding up production, and (often) saving a few bucks. At the same time, however, skeptics point to the added potential for malfunctions in such products, while noting the advantages of choosing machines manufactured by specialists in one particular discipline—after all, no serious designer needs a machine which is a jack of all trades but master of none.

Versa3D, the new desktop fabrication machine from CreateAll, is not only promising to avoid the pitfalls of all-in-one machinery; it actually thinks it can beat many 3D printers on the market in terms of printing speeds, build volume, and materials flexibility. Three years ago, the CreateAll team set to work with the sole intention of building a faster, bigger, and more flexible 3D printer, but soon realized that its research and development could be applied just as effectively to other fabrication processes.

After integrating a spindle and laser into its 3D printer, CreateAll worked through several prototype designs until settling on a machine which, in the words of its staff, “outperformed all of our expectations.” Additionally, the machine is completely modular, so customers can choose to purchase only the 3D printer, or any combination of the three modules, in order to suit their specific fabrication needs.

The 3D printing element of the Versa3D boasts some impressive technical specs, including a 11.8 x 11.8 x 8.7 in. (300 x 300 x 221 mm) build volume and 300mm/s printing speeds. To achieve these high speeds, the 3D printer uses a rack and pinion drive system, as well v-wheel movement for smooth motion. In order to achieve its desired goal of material flexibility, CreateAll have implemented dual print heads into the 3D printer, enabling materials experimentation, multicolor printing, and effective printing with support structures.

Usability was another area in which CreateAll hoped to excel, and the aluminum-framed Versa3D consequently comes with several handy features and shortcuts, such as wireless smartphone/tablet control, drag and drop onboard slicing, and an automated setup process. The machine also incorporates BuildTak—a thin and durable plastic sheet—to its build plate for maximum first-layer adhesion.

The CNC mill element, which works on three axes, uses NEMA 17 motors and a 300W spindle which runs almost silently, making it suitable for office use. The laser cutter uses a 2500mW laser head with adjustable focus and can engrave at speeds of 300mm/s.

With the Kickstarter campaign launching later today, backers can secure an early bird deal on the desktop fabrication machine. For just one element of Versa3D—the 3D printer, for example—backers can preorder for $2,999. Two attachments costs $3,299, while the complete three-part machine costs $3,499. Estimated delivery for these early bird orders is January 2017.




Posted in 3D Printer



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