Three new personal 3D printers, all fused filament types, are being offered in the US. At the moment, two are on crowd-source funding campaigns, and one is being offered directly through a storefront. These are complete units, in one case fully assembled and tested, with the intended market being new people to the field. Prices are quoted as listed today and may be subject to change.
The cheapest, the SeeMeCNC H-1, is being offered on indiegogo.com at $350 complete but has a parallel port controller board. Their campaign ends in 4 days from now. These guys are from the CNC subtractive manufacturing world. The unit has injection molded parts and even injection molded plastic bearings! It is patterened off of the RepRap Huxley design. You can order the unit without the electronics and motors for just $100 and add your own with a RAMPS or even one of the MakerBot controllers. Hmmm, maybe it is time to retire my old CupCake CNC and reuse the electronics?? There doesn’t appear to be a heated build surface for this one yet.
The next one up the price list is from kickstarter.com as well as their own web site, printrbot.com. It is $499 complete, and this includes an integrated hot build surface. Again, it is intended for a novice to assemble. This unit has sold over 900 units for a take of $320,000, with still 11 days to go. It is quite compact and also claims to be expandable by changing out rods and screws. Quite amazing!
The last unit to mention is from solidoodle.com. This unit is $699, but unlike the other two, it is completely assembled and tested upon arrival! Another unique feature is that it is completely enclosed with a hinged front see through door. This definitely looks more like a “real” appliance, and the enclosed design is far safer in public settings. I’ve been tentatively recommending these to school districts (since I’ve not seen one in action yet). Shipments are scheduled by mid-December at this time so some lucky folks will soon have the opportunity to check them out.
None of these machines are “in the wild” yet though will be in the next few months. It looks like 2012 will be an exciting year in the development of personal 3D printing!