3D Printing, Writing

11: CES 3D Printer Roundup

January 18, 2018

For the past few years, I’ve walked the CES show floor with my pal John Biehler. We focus on 3D printing on at least one day of our trip and 2018 didn’t disappoint. The 3D printing area was physically smaller than years past, but it made up for it in quality. I’m trying a different format for this gallery. You’ll get my 1- minute key learnings and a walkthru of each gallery picture (captions aren’t displaying more than 100 characters).

Key Learnings: This is the year of the metal 3D printers at the prosumer level, with Desktop Metal and Markforged producing impressive results. The big incumbents (3D Systems and Stratasys) were nowhere to be seen, but prototypes made on their products were sprinkled about. Newcomers in SLA weren’t present, but their SLS counterparts were.  Every consumer printer is producing excellent prints, to the point where showing them isn’t interesting. Each is differentiating on reliability and content. Of my favorite two, Lulzbot had a strong showing; Ultimaker was absent. Keep your eye on Monoprice (sadly, not pictured here) for some great deals this year.

  1. Form Cell Automated 3D Printing Factory with Form 2 printers. Francis Bitonti getting a closer look.
  2. Close up of the Form Cell control screen. Note the gantry system to remove 3D prints.
  3. Formlabs Fuse 1 laser sintering printer. Remarkable as one of the first desktop sintering printers from a well known corporation.
  4. MarkForged Mark X metal 3D printer. It’s a filament extrusion printer (metal impregnated filament) with a companion post-processing sintering oven.
  5. Testing Markforged Parts on a load cell.
  6. Metal mesh made on a Markforged Metal-X. Mesh is polished while the frame is unfinished.
  7. Desktop Metal 3D Printer at the Dynamism booth.  It’s also an extrusion printer using with metal impregnated media, requires post-processing in sintering oven.
  8. Lulzbot’s booth was literally a 3D printer manufacturing line on the CES show floor. It looked like a lot of fun, but alas they wouldn’t let me join.
  9. Assembling Lulzbot Mini 3D printers on the CES show floor.
  10. A Finished special Edition Lulzbot Mini (one of 26!)
  11. Lulzbot Mini Made in Vegas!
  12. Lulzbot Taz 6 with Aerostruder toolhead (e3D hotend with compact extruder).
  13. Closeup of Lulzbot Aerostruder toolhead. I cannot wait to get one for my Taz.
  14. Ethereal Halo 5-axis 3D printer with CNC milling and 3D printing in one.  The bed moves in multiple axes, making it dead simple to print layers in many directions. The company, an Indian firm from Bangalore, won a CES Innovation award.
  15. Ethereal Print – CNC carved wood base, with plastic extruded on top.
  16. 3D printed moon using NASA Lunar Reconaissance mission data with companion AR app.
  17. More AR goodness. Their Indigogo is here.
  18. -21  Various 3d printers. Bigger, more precise, and lots of touchscreens.
  19. XYZ Sintering Printer. It’s huge.
  20. Flux Laser Cutter (same company that makes the Flux Delta multifunction)
  21. Glowforge – it’s real, it’s shipping, and it was cutting wood on the show floor!

Featured Image: Closeup of a 3D print from the Ethereal Machines Halo 5-axis 3D Printer. Can you spot what makes it special? 

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