Mar 13, 2017 | By Tess

Keep a close eye on Kickstarter tomorrow, as a new modular hybrid 3D printer is set to launch. Called the “Snapmaker,” the new machine combines a 3D printer, CNC carver, and a laser engraver. The Snapmaker 3D printer will be available for as low as $299.

As with all new 3D printers that launch via Kickstarter or other crowdfunding campaigns, a bit of skepticism is always healthy. But so is a fair bit of excitement. So far, from what we’ve learnt about the upcoming Snapmaker modular 3D printer, it seems like a promising product that could be suitable for consumers looking for a multi-use and low-cost 3D printer.

As its developers tell it, the new 3D printer hybrid is made from a robust all-metal frame (aluminum alloys, to be exact), and integrates a modular design that makes it easy to ship and easy to use. The fully equipped modular machine comes with three interchangeable modules, one for 3D printing, one for laser engraving, and one for CNC carving, which the user can effortlessly switch between.

The Snapmaker’s 3D printer function offers a build volume of 125 x 125 x 125 mm, a layer resolution of 50 to 300 microns, and a print head travel speed of 10 to 150 mm/s. Its laser engraver module includes a 500mW laser, and a 405nm wavelength, and can be used with a variety of materials including wood, bamboo, leather, plastic, fabric, paper, and more. Finally, the Snapmaker’s CNC carver has an adjustable spindle speed of between 2,000 and 7,000 RPM. The latter can be used with wood, acrylic, and PCB.

In terms of software, the Snapmaker comes with Snap3D, a reportedly easy-to-use drag-and-drop interface that is beginner friendly. The 3D printer is also compatible with other 3D printing software and slicer programs including Cura, Simplify 3D, and Slic3r.

So far, the Snapmaker’s developers have unveiled a number of photos and a video preview of their new product, which give some indication that the machine actually works. We’ll likely have to wait to see the full crowdfunding campaign, however, to see how truly promising the modular and extremely affordable 3D printer really is. Like I said, healthy skepticism is a good thing, especially when a great looking device is available for such a reasonable cost.

For $299, backers will reportedly be able to get their hands on the Snapmaker 3D printer module, with each additional module costing $75. That means that, in total, the three-in-one 3D printer is going for $449, a cost that is cheaper than most desktop 3D printers. We’ll have to wait until tomorrow to see what the early-bird offers look like and how much the Snapmaker is aiming to raise.

 

 

Posted in 3D Printer

 

 

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