At the pace this industry is moving, there will come a time when we will have designers dime-a-dozen, churning out half-baked ideas as the next big thing. Feeding fodder to their imagination will be a new generation of 3D Printers that are affordable and easy to experiment with. Leading this new generation is New Matter’s MOD-t 3D Printer that claims to be cheap, with a preorder set at $300 a pop.
Given that most entry-level printers retail at a minimum of $1300 or more, Pasadena-based startup New Matter’s offering comes as a pleasant surprise. No prizes for guessing that the company will use the unique price point as its marketing strategy to get the requisite funding, when their project goes live on May 28th, on a crowdfunding platform. Yep, Early-bird backers get a special discount!
MOD-t is said to be an easy-to-use device that everyone from a hobbyist grandma to a 3D-printed-gun-experimenting grandson can use. The makers intend to provide an online library full of ready-to-print 3D objects that the users can download and print instantly. Since no complex software or 3D design knowledge is required, we can only imagine the extent of usage this device can have. In any case, some online reports indicate that by 2018, more than one million consumer based 3D printers will be sold annually. Now we know where to attribute this 1000% jump!
According to the details given by the makers, the MOD-t printer is based on fused deposition modeling technology. Typically, the extruder responsible for heating the plastic – or any other material – and building an object with it, can move in three dimensions. The MOD-t doesn’t function in that way; it moves only vertically. As explained by Softpedia, “a 3D printer has an extruder that moves in X (left-right), Y (top-bottom parallel to the build platform) and Z axes (up-down), but the one from the printer New Matter just revealed moves only vertically.”
In lay terms – the extruder only works along the Z axis, while the print bed, also known as build plate, moves in X and Y directions. This is perhaps the main reason why printer is so cheap. Apparently this patent-pending method of printing is much easier to execute and reliable. Moreover, it requires a lot fewer parts to function.