Some great 3D printing companies got their start by bootstrapping their projects on Kickstarter. We’re talking about significant printers in the consumer 3d printing industry like the Formlabs Form 1, Zortrax M200, Printrbot, and many more. While 3D printers may not have hit the main stream, there is definitely an avid group of hobbyists, early adopters, and do-it-yourselfers who are helping the market grow and improve by showing their support for 3d printing projects on Kickstarter. Here’s a round up of some recent successful 3D Printing Kickstarter projects that we’re excited to see.
Kid Friendly Printer
The MiniToy 3d printer boasts a kid-friendly design that makes it easy for anyone to get started by simply connecting their computer or iPad, installing filament, and clicking on some creations in their software. This 3d printing Kickstarter project raised over $70,000 to start production.
Just because it’s designed for kids doesn’t mean that it’s not legit. The MiniToy will have a 170mmx130mmx150mm printing size with .15 mm layers according to its creators. What’s more impressive looking is the app that is supposed to allow users to scan files, print projects, and monitor progress. The MiniToy 3D printer is available for pre-order on Kickstarter now for $299.
World’s Cheapest 3D Printer
It seems like we’re always getting promises of cheaper consumer 3d printers, but the 101Hero is really taking that goal to heart. Their original project goal was $20,000. They got funded at over $400,000! So what can we expect?
The creators looked to create a simple, streamlined printer that starts at just $79, if you preorder the 101Hero from their site. You’ll have to do a bit of the assembly yourself (it helps them save on shipping), but the founders say it will only take a few minutes of turning some screws. For that price, you get a decently sized device with a 219mm x 253mm x 327mm print area and a quality looking build. We’re excited to be able to get our hands on it sometime in October 2016. Find out more about their Kickstarter Campaign.
Finishing Tool For Your 3D Printed Projects
Projects in 3D printing on Kickstarter aren’t just limited to printers. In 3D printing, supports are added sometimes to print models to stabilize their structure. Surface defects can be left behind after the stabilizers are removed. The usual way to repair these defects is to draw some resin with a syringe, inject it into the defects, and then cure it with either sunlight or an UV lamp, but this can get messy. The Fixer3d is a programmable syringe pump with UV light for curing. That means you can get much more precise when refining your printed projects. From the creator.
The Fixer will control the amount of resin extruded accurately via a programmable syringe pump. Tiny resin drops of the proper size will be injected into the defect area. If you inject too much resin, you can use the Fixer to suck resin back into the syringe. After you have the right amount of resin injected, you can cure it immediately afterward using the integrated UV LED light. The long life UV LED light has a tightly focused beam to insure rapid curing of the resin.
– From the creator of the Fixer3d on Kickstarter
A Scanner To Go Along With All These 3D Printing Kickstarter Projects
The Ciclop by CowTech is an open source, 3D laser scanner that was successfully funded earlier this year. From its specs page, it has a 200 mm by 205 mm scan volume and 0.5 mm resolution.
Here’s a look at one job using the scanner and a Prusa i3 printer.
The scanner is modeled after the BQ Ciclop 3D Scanner, but at a cheaper price. It’s available for pre-order from CowTech’s website for $119 and the company is looking to ship later this year after some delays. Find out more on their Kickstarter campaign.
Education Focused 3D Printing Kickstarter Course
3D printing technology has been touted as a great way to introduce STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) to children. And why not? Playing around with cool tools where you can see the results of your progress at the end seems way more satisfying than solving an algorithm on a chalk board. One of the leading focuses in promoting STEM is getting more girls involved to improve the demographic trends in these industries. The MakerGirl Goes Mobile project is looking to do just that. MakerGirl is a for-purpose organization founded at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. They host educational 3D printing sessions across the United States:
By providing a hands-on experience for girls to imagine, design, and 3D print a creation of their own, we are encouraging girls to become excited about their future and all that they can accomplish as women leaders in STEM. After every session, each girl goes home with proof that they can successfully bring their ideas to life and become the next generation of Change-makers.
Since the campaign’s successful raise, MakerGirl has hosted over 20 sessions and reached over 300 girls this summer.
While the campaign is over, if you’re interested in supporting the cause or joining a session, check out the MakerGirl website.
All-In-One 3D Printer
Is just having a 3D printer not enough? What if you want to do laser cutting, engraving, or light milling? The Reach 3D Printer Kickstarter project is meant to provide the ability to upgrade their 3D printer for more utility.
Source: Nate Rogers/Reach 3D Printer
For $259, you can have this 3D printer designed with open source components that combines versatility with ease of use. One thing to note, the upgradability is a function, and not included with the build. Still, how awesome is it to have machine where you can add laser cutting, engraving, plotting, and with more developments along the way? The creators did all this while including a 200 x 200 x 215 mm build volume, 60-90 mm/s print speed depending on detail, and 50 micron layer height print accuracy.
They also have a robust Google+ community to give updates on the project and provide instructions on how to upgrade the printer.
The exciting thing about the 3D printing industry is that it’s still growing fast and innovating on all fronts. There many more new developments showing up on Kickstarter everyday. Stay tuned to find out about more developments and we’ll review all the ones we can get our hands on as funded campaigns go into production.