A new 3D printer is likely to make good on its promise to offer easy affordable 3D printing to everyone, after it breezed past its initial campaign goals on Kickstarter and is now at over $1 million.
The Buccaneer 3D printer from Pirate 3D Inc is described as easy to use, accessible, intuitive and most of all, very affordable, which is expected to be the determining factor for the widespread home consumer use of the system.
Designed as a closed-box, elegant system, the Buccaneer 3D printer is shipped fully assembled and ready to use out of the box. All the printing components are inside an acrylic and polished aluminum case, having no buttons and only a single light to indicate the printer status.
The system only needs to be plugged in and connects to a computer via WiFi, requiring no complicated installation process. All the printing happens out of sight, the product being lowered onto the platform below after it’s finished. The printing material – 1.75 mm PLA spool, can be easily inserted in the cartridge through a hole at the top of the printer.
The Buccaneer also has a cloud-connection option which allows users to print from their tablet or smartphone. Users are also provided with an impressive library of pre-constructed items and various tools to customize their own objects.
To further increase the printer’s accessibility, the software for object customization, called Smart Objects, is free and designed to be very easy to use, which means owners of the Buccaneer will be able to customize their objects just by clicking a few buttons without having to know complicated 3D design software operations. Pirate 3D is also creating a software development kit for advanced users.
The Buccaneer 3D printer takes up a very small space of 9.8×9.8 inch, while its build area measures 5.8×3.9×4.7 inch. It prints at a 100 micron resolution and a top speed of 50 mm per second.
Kickstarter backers can receive the Buccaneer plus one cartridge for a pledge of as little as $397. The printer is expected to start shipping early next year.
[Images via Kickstarter]