MakerBot Replicator 2X– 3D Printer
Its been a few weeks since I decided I would like to get a 3d Printer and I have finally decided to bite the bullet and get one. For those of you who do not know what a 3D Printer is, it essentially allows you to design 3 Dimensional Models on your Computer and then actually create them with a 3D printer. 3D printers work by laying down very fine layers of melted plastic to create the object you have designed.
The crazy thing about this is, it should revolutionize home manufacturing. Lets say you break a part or component or just need something particular made of plastic. Many items have already been designed, you can grab the file and just print it up at home! If you are really feeling the creative itch, you can essentially make just about anything you can think of. It is going to allow everyday people who may not have an engineering background to be able to “imagine & create”.
While 3D printers have been around for a while, they have only recently become somewhat affordable. With time, we are going to see more companies getting involved, but as of right now the 2 that are the most interesting to me are Maker Bot and Cubify.
I’ve been researching them both for some time now, and decided to go with the Replicator 2x for the following reasons:
– Prints in both ABS & PLA plastic (I want a printer that can do both. ABS plastic is stronger, PLA is easier to work with but has a lower melting temperature.
– Comes with 2 nozzles (or extruders) allowing you to print in 2 materials/colors
– Maker Bot software supports multiple types of 3D files, as well as operates on both Mac and PCs.
– Maker Bots plastic is less expensive, about $50 a 2 KG roll.
– Cover – The enclosure keeps operating temperatures stable and helps reduce unwanted vapors.
– Build Construction – I think it looks better.
– Maker Bot just announced a “Maker Bot 3D Scanner” that works with their system. This means you can “scan” an item, like a toy figure, and print make duplicates.
– $300 more, but I figure this will be made up when purchasing plastic as you are saving $50 a roll.
– Has a smaller print volume than the CubeX by Cubify:
(Replicator 2x = 9.7″x 6″ x 6.1″)
(CubeX = 10.8″ x 10.45″ x 9.5″)
– No warranty
– 2 Month waiting period right now
CubeX by Cubify is available right now:
– Also prints in both ABS and PLA
– Much Larger Print Area
– Available for purchase right now
– Comes with a 90 Day Warranty
– Cost is $2500 (this is a little misleading because it only comes with 1 nozzle)
– You can upgrade it to have 3 nozzles, or extruders.
– Must pay a $500 upgrade to get the second nozzle, and an additional $1000 for the third.
– Must convert files to a proprietary “.cubex” format before printing
– Plastic is $100 per roll
Im really excited to get my hands into one of these systems as I have many things I have dreamed of making on them, I will definitely bring you guys along for the ride, but Ill have at least 2 months to wait. Ill keep you posted.
Have you purchased either of these 3 day printers? We would love to hear back from you and hear what you think! Please post your comments below!