We are engineers, tinkerers and builders who are pushing the limits of what we can do with 3D Printing and Prototyping. We offer prototyping services (we will print and 'debug' your designs) as well as a variation of the latest desktop printer, the SmartRap. We also offer for sale a series of models that we have designed and placed on Thingiverse (look for SkyRider) for printing at reasonable prices.
We have completed development of the SmartRap Heavy Metal, an all metal (mostly) 3-in-1 3D printer, CNC machine and laser engraver. As of right now, we have completed and tested the printing capabilities and are ready to offer it for sale.
The printer encompasses these features:
The ability to use a truly large printbed. If you are printing in PLA, you don't need a heatbed and you can go as large as 24"x18".
We currently have it at 22"x18" with 6" in height. This is a truly huge print surface for a footprint not much larger than a conventional printer. Our secret is that we place all the critical components under the print bed. If you want to print in ABS, we can provide you a bed with whatever sized heatbed is on the market: from as small as 6"x6" and as large as 18"x12" and beyond. If you have a custom size you prefer, we can customize a dual heatbed printer to allow you to have a truly large printing surface, although we do want you to know that warping will always be a problem with the larger heated surfaces, especially since they will radiate heat more and of course have higher power requirements. The smallest bed we offer is 6"x6", then we go to 8"x8" and beyond. Please specify your desired bed size when you contact us.
The print head is detachable by loosening 2 screws. Each head comes off and is replaced based on your specific function. We use Repetier, so if you have an object rendered in your print area, and then print it, you can switch to engraving mode in the same software (this is the 2D capability in Repetier) and then engrave with the laser. The CNC aspect is the same, although keep in mind that the cantilevered arm limits the CNC operations to a 6"x6" area. We are working on a system that extends CNC capabilities, but this version is more for occasional and lighter CNC work. We use off-the-shelf parts as much as possible. Besides the extruder and J-Head mount, the only printed parts are the X-carriage and the brackets. We have arranged for both to be professionally sintered for us. In time we will replace these parts with their injection molded equivalents, however we have not seen serious wear as-is and we would only provide those for aesthetics.
Customizable colors: you can specify walls made of acrylic or metal and you can choose from blue, black, red and clear acrylic walls. The printer also can be made using 3mm aluminum walls. If all you want is a truly large format 3D printer, we can build the entire machine for you in plastic, in which case you can use it as a printer and engraver, but not as a CNC machine as the loads on the base would not be able to handle the CNC head.
Customizable hardware: We have built the system as a RAMPS based unit as well as a Sanguinlolu based unit. For either, and at slightly additional cost, we will provide you with an LCD controller. We are also planning a Rasberry Pi upgrade to turn the printer into a web-accessible unit. We are currently testing Repetier on the Rasberry Pi for this. The controller mounts to the rear of the printer and is totally enclosed. Finally, for those who want more options, we will soon be offering the same unit with a Melzi board. As with the Sanguinololu board we will offer it with a Panelolu 2.0 LCD controller. Please contact us if you prefer this option.
The base printer (12"x12" bed) with your choice of microcontroller is $600 (US Currency) with $45 for shipping. No heatbed is included. Additional shipping charges outside the US will apply. If this intrigues you and you would like more information, please contact us via eMail. We will attempt to answer all your questions to your satisfaction. Of course, we will refund your money if you are not satisfied with our printer. Keep in mind that this is a deceptively heavy unit for something that has such a small footprint and that is by design, to ensure that it can withstand the stresses on it.
Finally, here is a recent article on our printer
This is the prototype of our customized SmartRap, originally by SmartFriendz. SmartRap is an open source desktop small footprint printer that you can find on Thingiverse.com. We have been making modifications to the original SmartRap for some time and we have been 'cherry picking' the various elements of any modification to put together the best combination of features as well as adding a few of our own. Here are some features of our version:
The SmartRap will be available as of June 1 as a kit, and fully assembled. We will be offering parts that are manufactured in-house and you will be able to purchase upgrades, print your own or send your printer to us for upgrades and calibration. Future upgrades include CNC machined parts, a laser engraving head and a mini-spindle for small scale CNC operations.
The Fab@Home printer has long been orphaned since it hit the web several years ago, but as a frame it is a terrific platform for making big prints. Easily able to accommodate a 12"x12" heatbed, we have retrofitted our prototype with modern electronics, stepper motors instead of the SnapMotors and the ability to accept multiple heads/extruders. We expect to make this printer available by end of Summer 2014 as a kit and fully assembled. Contact us for additional details.
Our Desktop CNC machine is built using thick acrylic and plastic with nothing but threaded rods for linear motion. It comes with 2 sets of electronics, one for true CNC operations using Mach3 or similar and a RAMPS/Sanguinololu board for 3D printing. This is a sturdy machine with plenty of travel for detail work and an interchangeable head to also accept a low power laser for engraving and light laser cutting to truly be an all-in-one unit. The CNC hardware uses the Toshiba chipset and is run over a parallel board, although a USB version of the CNC hardware is available. The Sangui board is also available with a Panololu 1 LCD controller and enclosure for PC free printing. We expect to offer this system towards the end of 2014.
We also offer a line of 3D Printed model rockets, including the modular rocket we introduced at the NoVA Mini Maker Faire. We also are developing a 3ft long U-Boat derived from a model available on Thingiverse suitable for motorization and static display. For examples of our rockets, please navigate to Thingiverse.com and search on SkyRider. If you have any special requests, we can make it for you and the cost will always be reasonable. Contact us!
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