As one of the easiest way to have an uninterrupted, fluid 3D printing experience, the FLEKS3D Build-Plate System is a designer’s dream come true. The design resolves 3 major issues with 3D printing, namely – getting the printed object off the build-plate with ease, getting us a good grip on the build-plate for no warping and lastly, resetting the leveling of the build-plate between each print.
We caught up with the design team comprising of Viktor Jondal and Peter Ragonetti, who have the Kickstarter campaign live right now and asked them what inspired them to launch this project. According to the duo, 3D printers are great, but since the technology is still pretty new, there are growing pains. One of the huge ones is removing parts from the plate. After enough broken parts and cut fingers you say to yourself, there must be a better way.
As experienced designers, they wanted to create a product that solved existing issues with 3D Printers. Moreover, they knew it was doable. The major innovation in the design is the ability to bend the plate so the part easily releases. As great as that is, it is important for the plate not to deform. This took a bit of material research. As the duo state, “While developing the flexing plate, we also solved the issue of constantly leveling your plate and material gripping on the plate. We did this be creating a system where the plates can be changed quickly using a frame system and adding a ultragrip texture to help the parts bond to the plate better.”
What was the biggest challenge that they faced?
“Really since the product is pretty simple, it making fit for all the different 3D Printing Machines. That is why we created the Universal plates because they can fit in the variety of machines on the market. And since we work in Solidworks and this is more of engineering challenge than design…”
The Designing process…
“Well it started focused on the Makerbot replicator 2 that we both own and use. But then we learned that the 5th Generation Makerbot was set to replace it. So we began designing for that machine as well. But the plate locked into the machine in a different way than the Makerbot 2. That was when we came up with the frame system. Which then we learned we would be able to tackle much more of the 3D printing market with the universal sizes.”
“The biggest challenge was testing that the sizes were correct for the Makerbots and universal machines. Then finding a manufacturing vendor to work with locally that could produce what we needed and meet our pricing requirements.”
If you belong to the lot that is experiencing the growing pains of 3D printing, then perhaps you should check out the campaign details here.