Interesting. A fully-cartesian approach to resin printing,

Interesting. A fully-cartesian approach to resin printing, on a bot that looks a lot like (and is controlled exactly like) an FDM reprap. I would think that the designs using fewer moving parts would be less expensive, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

arrnt those photos are a bit deceiving in showing the machines SIZE… once one sees the nickel next to the yoda head… anyhow.

Did you think it was bigger or smaller? All of the components are familiar enough to me that the scale was obvious…

When I designed the machine I intended it to be as compatible as possible with current RepRap hardware. As far as the small prints go, I just wanted to show that it can easily print small items that would otherwise be quite difficult on an FFF style machine. It can print a full bed sized object but that would actually be a lot easier to do than the small one. I’ve never successfully printed a Yoda head that small on an FFF machine without some form of support. On the mUVe 1 there was no support at all.

I will be posting a lot more media as I can work through test prints this week. If anyone has a request for an object please let me know and I’ll print it and post an image.

I really like that the resolution of the print is not limited by the resolution of a projector. I’m sure the projector is faster, but I’m content to build overnight. If only something could be done about the cost of resin.

the angles/FOV of the photos, plus the elimination of room/item scale makes them appear much larger… is this unit about 12" wide… — as a 25 year product designer… id suggest you give product dimensions clearly on the site… that nickel might cost you:) resin is a growing choice… sanding is a bitch.:slight_smile:

@Larry- I’ve added outer dimensions to the feature list on IndieGoGo. Thanks for the pointers! As far as the other images are concerned, I may consider moving them around. I really want to highlight how easily the printer can handle small parts though. All the commercial offerings that are showing up clearly focus on how small of features they can handle and I think that is very important. It’s worth pointing out that the “finishing” process will get better too. No sanding/filing will be required down the road, or possibly by launch, it just a matter of finding a surface that holds on well but still lets go in the end. I’m considering a 2 part, slightly flexible, build surface that would allow you to bend the plate and “pop” the part off. I think that once other folks start using the printer the options will really start to open up. We will listen to the community and further develop the printer based on their needs.

@Dale- It is very nice that you can keep high resolution regardless of the part size. All the Laser Galvo Scanner and DLP options coming out are very limited. It’s what has kept me from buying one and instead working on my own. What I really love is that the printer could be doubled in size for less than a 50% increase in cost, and without any change in the 3D printed parts. Yes resin is expensive but it goes a long way. I’ve printed a LOT over the past few months and I’ve used maybe a third of the gallon that I purchased. Prices will come down with time too. There needs to be a market if that is going to happen though. I see it much like the early days of RepRap happening over again with a slightly different focus. It used to be much much more expensive to do what we all do today.

alls good. sometimes you gotta think like a salesman too–:slight_smile: and if someone spent 1600 bucks on some “magic machine” they read about in WIRED…lol and saw a complex mechanical thing and it shows up in a shoebox…lol they might feel a bit ripped off… remeber those life sized frankenstiens and skeletons one used to buy for 50 cents in the back of comics…:wink: well maybe many dont:)

consider my assist a consult. and ill take a device when ready- make some starbasec3 v2 ship prints:)

US Shipping only… close tab

@Lee_Brenton - I’ve updated the perks to include international shipping. Rules for shipping things like resin changed this year and I’ve been unsure if I would have an international shipper. I spent a couple hours today researching the topic, I won’t make any promises I can’t keep. The rules state that because the target is the consumer level, smaller quantities are no longer under such strict regulation and could possibly even go by air. Because of this I have opened up the option for international shipping! It will be handled on a case by case basis, you will only be charged the exact amount that it costs to ship your items.

I’m putting the same post as an update on IndieGoGo right now. Thank you for your input!

Hi Dean, I had a question about the resolution on your machine. You’re using a laser diode with an aperture to achieve .1mm resolution. Do you believe higher resolution is achievable with the relatively cheap SS laser diodes and UV cure resin? Is there a resolution limit to the resin if one were to use a higher quality laser source?

So, is the principal benefit of this approach that you don’t reduce xy resolution with an increase in build area? I knew this was a problem with any projector based stl solutions but I’d assumed that a laser/galvo system would have better resolution, defined (I assume) by the angular resolution of the galvos… I ask all this because I can’t quite reconcile the benefits vs all the extra mechanical components for this solution. One of the very enticing aspects of STL for me is the reduced moving part count in comparison to an FDM bot .

@Jon_Caywood Yes I am using a laser diode with an inexpensive acrylic focusing lens and then a steel iris diaphragm to tighten the beam down to .1mm. At that layer height you can barely make out the layers with the naked eye, so unless you have a technical need for higher accuracy, I don’t see the need to use it. Much higher resolution of up to .01mm is likely achievable but there is going to be a caveat, print time. Just going from .1mm to .05mm can more than double the print time. While I think I can keep times down using high speed, there will eventually be a point of diminishing gain.

@Tim_Rastall Yes the main benefit here is that there is no resolution loss no matter what size of a part you choose to make or where the laser is positioned. Unfortunately, as you stated, DLP and Laser Galvo solutions have that limitation. While I still do have a mechanical system it is much simpler overall when compared to a RepRap, mainly because there is no extruder to manage. The FFF extruder is a complex part and it has a lot of mechanics, it can break down easily, and is expensive. The laser has none of those limitations. I can understand the large difference between part numbers on my design and a projector or Galvo setup, but I still can’t bite the bullet on their cost and size/resolution limitations. My design could be scaled up, or using larger aluminum extrusions, turned into a large format printer without resolution loss. I really like the idea of a large format printer that likely wouldn’t cost more than the current $2-3k FFF offerings. I also like that you wouldn’t need gallons upon gallons or resin to operate it, something that can’t be said for commercial top-down laser printers. That being said, it is a lot to think about. There are limitations to everything and I like the idea of variety. Projector and Galvo solutions have their place in 3D printing as well, I just have trouble justifying the costs when less expensive and less limited solutions exist. Let me know if I can answer anything else!

Hi ! Do you have some videos showing the working printer?

I have some videos here of it working in its basic form:

I will post more detailed video this week as well as a time-lapse video, and more pictures of completed prints as well!

@Dean_Piper Thanks for your response. Do you have any stats on the resolution limitations of a galvo printer? I’ve not been able to find any.
Unrelated question: have you investigated warming the resin you’re using to reduce its viscosity?

@Tim_Rastall I don’t have stats one the laser galvo but I can explain it pretty clearly. At least I hope I can.

A laser is a really focused beam yet it is not perfectly straight, it has an hourglass or “X” shape to it. So at a certain point the laser will collect very tightly and then start spreading out again. When using a laser galvo the laser never moves and the length of the beam gets longer and shorter as the mirrors redirect it around the build surface. So in effect, the further away the laser gets the worse the resolution gets. In a system like this, it has very high resolution close to the mechanics, but as the laser stretches longer lengths the loss of focus changes the curing area. Not to mention it is curing at an angle and not vertically. Have you ever shined a flashlight on the sidewalk and seen the elliptical shape it makes? This is what happens to the laser on a galvo setup.

In my setup the laser distance never changes, it makes it almost infinitely expandable, and the laser is always oriented vertically so the point is as round as possible at all times.

I do heat the resin, a heater is attached to the side of the reservoir. This will be included on all the full kits that include full electronics. To further answer your question, reducing the viscosity is more important when the build surface isn’t perforated. The suction can be quite intense. Thinning it makes quite a difference, it allows me to keep things moving rather quickly. There are thinner resins too. I am using the thicker, harder, more durable resin. There is also a thinner rubbery resin that I want to test.

I just removed the soldering requirement on the printer kits. I will now be using motors with detachable cables!

@Dean_Piper Any decent laser should be well collimated and not diverge (at least not within its expected operational ranges). Of course cartesian movements and galvo scanners both have their upsides and downsides. One thing to note is that for a galvo scanner, to achieve high precision and avoid distortion of the beam spot, potentially expensive optics like a flat field or f-theta lens is required. Arguably the best benefit of the cartesian movement system is the cost savings associated with leveraging all the work and parts from RepRap.

I’m a FORM 1 backer, but strongly considering backing mUVe 1. Let’s see some more close up detail of the finished prints!