You all might want to give the Pirate3D SmartObjects demo a whirl.

You all might want to give the Pirate3D SmartObjects demo a whirl. They’ve released the android and in-browser demo of their software which they say will change how the layman interacts with #3Dprinting . I must say as a complete and utter layman I was rather impressed with it on my Nexus 4. Be interested in what you, more experienced, folk think of it.

It’s very limited. I can make a cup for the most part. It’s rotation around an axis. Maybe I’m missing something but I don’t see it as a game-changer. Sculpteo has similar capabilities that include ease of use.

Title is misleading, makibox is cheaper. It is the most affordable fully assembled 3d printer.

@Camerin_hahn the makibox isn’t anything yet, except vaporware. Yes, you can order one, but you can’t actually receive one.

The cheapest kit is the printrbot Simple, which has at least already shipped units.

Bear in mind that this is simply a demo, as a novice I found it very easy to use.

@Jasper_Janssen dito for the buccaneer. More evidence supports makibox than the buccaneer. The title is still misleading.

Today the most affordable printer is the printrbot simple. But in no fair comparison is this printer the most affordable.

Oh, sure, I’m about seventy five percent convinced that the buccaneer is either a scam or a very overly optimistic pricing scheme or overly optimistic product design/renderings, or up to two of the above. Sorry, didn’t realize that that was what you were talking about. You do realize that that is the title the pirate3d folks have given their own website, and not something the original poster has said? It’s not so much “misleading” as “marketing”.

That was a direct link to Pirate3D but I must say I don’t agree that the printer is a scam, I was sceptical at first, but we have seen the videos of the printer, I’ve been in contact with the owners and they’ve developed and demo’d this software.

I think what you’ll find is a company making a loss on initial production who will scale up and eventually make a profit on mass production and from materials, cartridges might cost a bomb we don’t know yet, sell a million printers at cost and require them to use only your filament? That’s a license to print money.

It’s just going to be a pre-built RepRap in a nice case, I doubt it will be revolutionary but the price and software will be enticing to people not in the sphere.

I have some major concerns about the cartridge and software, the attitude would imply freedom, but the reality implies that there would be major rights management on their cartridges. You could sell the printer at a loss and make up the money in overpriced filament and charging for services.

I don’t think it is a scam.

You see, if their business plan is in fact to sell the blades and give away the razors, then what they are peddling in the Kickstarter is in fact a scam, since they’re explicitly saying they’re not going to be doing that. It would also entail some investor in the business to cover those initial losses, which would be incredibly against KS ToS.

If their business plan is just to scale production so hard that they’re not selling at a loss at the sort of prices they’re charging, well, I applaud them, but I don’t think it’s realistic. And I think that even a well meaning pirate3d could become the worst Kickstarter failure ever if they run out of everyone’s money before they’ve shipped all the rewards.

They can’t raise the price for later sales and subsidize the kickstarter a from profits on those, because we’ve all seen what happened when @Brook_Drumm was even vaguely suspected of doing that.

It’s not the software I’m worried about (although I’d be very surprised if their software was opened up to other users), it’s the hardware.

Even at the ten thousand unit mark (which I don’t think they’ll reach) my gut feeling is that the guts and the case, as presented to us on the Kickstarter page, would not be profitable at 350 bucks.

I concur, there is minimum material price for the parts even in bulk, labor cost go up if you want to turn out products quickly. That being said. Pressed metal is much cheaper in volume than laser cut plywood. I honestly hope it is a great project, I honestly hope it is as advertised. But making false claims is not winning my trust.

One thing I don’t really get is why on earth they’d be using (what they say is) a custom aluminum extrusion as the top case. Alu is never going to be cheaper than thin sheet steel pressed into a square with a spot welded seam along the back, and a truly custom large size (10x10"!) extrusion, man, that’s going to add costs, not reduce them as they claim in the page. I mean, maybe they found someone producing extrusions that size, in which case great! It seems like it might be the profile of external hard drive cases matching the Mac Mini, or something like that.

But then why would you say that you’ll order something specially made for you rather than that you’ve found someone supplying something awesome?

I just get lots of red flags from them and my gut says no. Also, a hundred dollars extra to ship internationally is super high. Between that and the taxes I’d have to pay on import I’d have to lock up $500 for what they say is six months and since it’s Kickstarter could easily be 12-18 months, and then pay another $100. It’s just too risky for me. And I really really wish it wasn’t.

(Btw, the top mounted center-fed coils look awesome, and I really hope that’s going to be a standard feature eventually — but I don’t think that they can mass produce them at fifteen bucks including filament to the standard seen in the pictures.)

The simple BOM is about $170. Labor and packaging isn’t in there. Laser cut wood is cheap but a metal case would add cost. Our costs will come down at scale but not that much- maybe $30. A $247 printer is dangerously thin margins. Take off 10% for amazon and kickstarter and startup costs and there is no margin. It’s inspiring to have competition but we’ve already beaten them to market with a good reputation and proven products. It’s probably real but the pressure and cost to start at that scale will be crushing. We are watching closely but think we will fare well against it when total cost of ownership is considered. We too are bringing a cloud service and apps to the mix. One thing I am sure of- it will look different than the video. Lots of questions but the proof will be in the pudding. The price is achievable but there is a lot they don’t know yet. We shall see

@Brook_Drumm I would think that of the stuff in the Simple, pretty much the only thing that could really get significantly cheaper at scale would be the motors and printrboard, and, hell, you’re already doing those guys well into the 1-10k order size range. Diminsihing returns tend to set in once you hit a thousand.

Are you contemplating something similar to the pirate folks in leveraging something like the RPi+Sanguinololu/printrboard sandwich that they’re pushing, or are you planning something more integrated? If, for instance, the community were to develop a working firmware for, say, the Beaglebone Black, you suddenly have a 45 dollar platform that really only needs a custom variant of a RAMPS-ish shield (RBBPS doesn’t scan as well, though) to be a complete network printer. On the other hand the RPi route lets you leverage the existing printrboard and all the knowledge that’s gone into its design and firmware, and offers an upgrade path for current users.

(My Simple beta, BTW, is printing off the computer I’m typing this on as we speak – one of the most significant bang for buck/effort upgrades I’ve done is using a 10 foot USB cable. Means I can still move the laptop around within a limited radius.)

Our printrboard is a descendant of the sanguinololu, but with a chip that has USB built in, a microsd slot, better power features and all smt. We are about to bring manufacturing cost down by half. The Rpi will soon be used as an optional middle man that can run the Printr outright , use a LAMP stack to run a UI on your phone (or any browser) via wifi, and connect to our cloud service. Imagine a cloud service where every model has a print button and it knows what printer you have, slices the model and prints on your printer at home. To bring all that to bear for $35 is pretty cool. More interesting to me than beagle bone, is an even cheaper android device doing all that for less. Perhaps an all in one device is on the horizon but it won’t be Pi b/c it’s not completely open. Adding wifi to a Pi is $10 so maybe an all in one can do it for less than the combined Printrboard+Pi+wifi will be able to.
The low hanging fruit here is offering so much added functionality for $45. Then again, with the software running on your computer connected to a Printrbot, you could have it for free. We are actively building this now.


@Brook_Drumm Awesome. Compared to my Simple, that stand-alone network-connected nature they’re pushing in the Pirate3D stuff is by far the most compelling thing about the push (although the promises-to-be steel-based solid XY stage is a close second — the picture shown shows the idler pulleys mounted like crap, though.)