Solidoodle 2 – the sub-$500 3D printer
For about a year, former aerospace engineer Sam Cervantes served as the chief of operations for Makerbot, the Brooklyn-based 3D printer manufacturer. While the reasons for his departure hasn’t been made public, his subsequent activities have – he’s been developing another 3D printer, known as the Solidoodle. He recently unveiled the latest model, the Solidoodle 2, which comes fully-assembled for just under $500.
Like other home 3D printers, the Solidoodle creates actual objects based on computer files, by depositing layers of molten plastic on a platform. Different colors of finished products are achieved simply by using different colors of filament plastic stock.
The Solidoodle 2 is capable of building objects measuring up to 6 x 6 x 6 inches (15.24 cm), which is a step up from the original model’s 4-inch (10 cm) limit. The steel-framed Base model is Windows, Mac, and Linux compatible and includes everything needed to start printing, for US$499. Extras on the $549 Pro model include a heated build platform (to prevent bottom warping of objects), an upgraded power supply and interior lighting, while the $599 Expert model additionally features an outer cover and a front acrylic door.
An object created using the Solidoodle 2
By way of comparison, the higher-spec’d Makerbot Replicator sells for $1,749, while Cubify’s The Cube 3D printer goes for $1,299.
The Solidoodle 2 is currently available for preorder, and can be seen in action in the video below.
Source: Solidoodle via BetaBeat
About the Author
An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.
All articles by Ben Coxworth
So... what to do about the surface texture?
Awesome. I don't know what I'd do with it, but I want one!
I guess it would help to know the cost of the consumables - $1/cubic inch? $1000/cubic inch? Obviously the plastic much be purchased somewhere, no doubt from Makerbot.
I can see schematics for designs going underground as 3d emerges this coming decade. They cant control you in your own home or what you could potentially print, but you'll always need the chemicals to make the designs
$43 for a 2 pound spool of plastic at solidoodle. Also saw the same thing at another site for $38. So my rough calculations* say it should be about $1.10 per cubic inch.
*plastic is a little denser than water (it sinks)
so two pounds would have a volume a little less than a quart
a cubic ft equals 8 gal
a gallon equals 12"x12"x1.5" = 216 cubic inches
a quart = 54 cubic inches
so my guesstimate is that a spool equals about 40 cubic inches.
Thanks for the numbers, mike65401...
ABS plastic is 1.04 grams/cm^3 so at $38 per 2lb roll that's $0.71/in or $0.044/cm^3.
source (PDF): http://www.sselec.com/data/ins specs/ABS Data sheet.pdf
calculation: http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=$38/(2lb/(1.04 grams/cm^3))
As cool as this is, I think it's even cooler that sites like Shapeways are making designs and printing available for those of us who would rather invest in shipping and a little overhead than a $600 printer. When can I get one that prints in waffle/pancake though?
Over 160,000 people receive our email newsletter
See the stories that matter in your inbox every morning