The money is in volume, quick turnaround, and responding quickly to changes. 3D printing offers the ultimate in Agile-style, iterative product development. It occupies the space between something like Proto-labs and the dude who is good with tools.

Watch Voodoo’s video on their printer farm. They have the right idea. Though I think the robot arm thing is overkill. There’s better ways to deal with automated production.

For Proto-Plastik, we are making ‘meta’ printers. Rather than buying a printer from a manufacturer, you make your own printers. This allows you to scale as much as you need at minimal cost. You own all maintenance and enhancements. No need to sit around waiting for a technician to fix something.

We’re still in the early stages of this concept, but it looks promising. Our print quality isn’t Stratasys quality, but it’s better than other printers at our pricepoint.

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I have, there are only a couple issues that I have seen with the mechanics of the current version. That is as it coils/uncoils the distance moved will change gradually since it is recoiling the wire/string/medium ontop of itself. As a demonstration and talking piece it is definitely something that catches someones attention (kind of like a delta printer which we have 1 from seemecnc that has has A Lot of hours on it, when it works people just kind of stare at it trying to figure it out). There are potentially a few changes that could be made to it to allow a more precise movement for Large prints, but it would take a few iterations of testing to get it right. I know one of the demonstrations I saw it was only able to utilize a small section of the larger room that it was in without having calibration/offset issues as it moved. The only other issue would be plastics limitations unless you heated the “floor” it was printing on.

Our printers range from 1Meter*1Meter*430mm for our current large one, with multi-zoned printing to our GT model that is smaller and comes in to 480mm*525mm*390mm, both of which are highly customize-able to ones needs. Currently for large parts that need to have strength and decent appearance I have been using the E3D Volcano with 1mm nozzle. Others I have set up with E3D V6 ranging from .4mm to .6mm and another with a Volcano at .8mm . is our site (we are currently re-vamping it).

If you have anything in the future and want to reach out or stop in let me know and email me at I will be keeping an eye on this thread as well.

A scatter brain or creative person is the one thing that has stopped the 3d printing business from being a viable revenue stream … much like the small mom and pop businesses that are skilled in making things but not money … I worked in both the corporate world and the private sole proprietor one … the difference is significant in regards to strategic plans

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We’re definitely getting there, though I’m not sure many consumers have the patience to keep an entry level machine running,and printing well, but we’re definitely getting closer!

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That’s because the scatterbrains are broke. Rich in ideas. Poor in capital.

Because they’re scatterbrains :slight_smile:

I think its a great idea, but if even computer shops wont stock parts or consumables its going to be difficult to get off the ground, i live near 2 cities in scotland and have to mail irder everything i need due to lack of stockists or knowledge

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possible yes