It looks like you're using an ad blocker! I really need the income to keep this site running.
If you enjoy BlenderNation and you think it’s a valuable resource to the Blender community, please take a moment to read how you can support BlenderNation.

The Peachy 3D Printer - Powered by Blender

32

The Peachy 3D Printer   Powered by Blender 3d news

The Peachy Printer is a crowd funded project which aims to create a 3D printer and scanner for only $100 (add $350 for the 3D scanner capability). What makes it unique is that it uses audio to control the mirrors which control the laser beam that writes the cross-sections of the models. The entire project runs on Blender - by providing an add-on, users can convert 3D models into the right kind of audio file to drive the printer. Likewise, the 3D scanner is also fully controlled by Blender!

The project has become the quickest fully-funded projects ever. With 27 days to go the team has collected CAD $229,867 where they only required CAD $50,000 to finish the project.

From the project page on Kickstarter:

The peachy printer is a Photolithographic printer. That means it uses a controlled beam of light to cure light sensitive resin into hard objects. The peachy moves a laser beam along the X and Y axes to create the shape of the object, while using a drip system to control the level of the resin on the Z axis which determines the height of the object.

The object you want to print must first become a 3D model in Blender. The software we wrote as an add on to blender takes the data from that 3D model and translates it into an audio waveform. It then plays the audio file out to the printer through the headphone jack in your computer. This waveform drives a pair of electro magnetic mirrors. The higher the volume, the higher the voltage, the more the mirrors move. The purpose of these mirrors is to reflect and control the path of the laser beam. By using the audio waveform generated from the 3D model data to drive the mirrors, we are able to get the laser beam to draw out the shape of the object. That's takes care of the X and Y axes.

Check out the process here:

Link

Share.
  • Francisco Ortiz

    Incredible!

  • http://www.rirath.com Rirath

    "add $350 for the 3D scanner capability"

    Not quite the case to my understanding, as you can use your own camera.

    What I really don't quite follow is how the cost goes from $100 CAD for a kit to $400 for assembled. There are costs, to be sure, but 4x the price for something they say can be assembled in just 1 hour?

    • http://blender.LwTV.de/ Blender Ei

      Maybe you need to hire an engineer for a few hundred bucks an hour, pay for higher shipping costs, pay addional shipping material, buy some screwdrivers and pay for electricity?!
      And what about the taxes you have to pay when you hire professional services?
      This might get ugly quite quickly.

      To be honest - I don't know either, but there might be more to it than just spending an additional hour.

      • http://shadow-whisperer.deviantart.com Shadowhisperer

        Gage, resident 3D artist of the Peachy Printer Team and somewhat, maybe, a little, knowledged as to how this device works.

        As Rylan told me, it is essentially a component of volume (numbers), shipping a fully constructed device securely enough to ensure safe arrival, quality testing, labour, and... I forgot the rest. XD

        Rylan himself will within the next few days (along with my incessant pestering) start the social aspect of this project by answering these questions here and on other sites so there is a good chance he will cover the details more. Sorry for not providing more details.

  • binsurf

    Perhaps with that much funding, they can find a way to reduce the cost of the scanner.

  • kakapo

    this is the coolest concept for a 3d printer i have ever seen.
    this dripping system which saves a lot of expensive mechanics... genius! :)

    is the resin some kind of epoxy? i have no clue... how unhealthy is it to work with something like that?
    how exact is this laser positioning per audio signals? the quality and volume and so one of computer audio outputs seems to vary a lot but i guess after some calibration it will work ok? :)

    • http://shadow-whisperer.deviantart.com Shadowhisperer

      Hello there. My name is Gage, I am the 3D artist on the team and I will try to answer your questions to the best of my abilities. Rylan will hopefully create an account soon to answer all questions in better depth. Now then:

      Here is the developer of the resin http://makerjuice.com/, we personally have a customised version of it and it has negligable toxicity when used within basic reason (not eating it XD). However it is only a placeholder at the moment as the team is trying to create our own resin that would be safe for preschoolers to handle. Rylan wants this thing in schools at all levels and a safe resin is must.

      Since I am not an engineer I will not be able to provide a perfectly in depth description but essentially the soundwave is treated as XY coordinates and given that the audio signal in general provides a resolution in excess of 4 gigapixels any variation in soundcard quality is negligible. Things like volume I am not sure of.

      Please tell me I did not sound too much like that telemarketer whom you wanted to beat over the head with a feral-ferret.

      • http://shadow-whisperer.deviantart.com Shadowhisperer

        I will try to answer more questions as I myself come to understand the technology more. In the meantime ask away but be aware that I am not an engineer.

        • Masnow1

          It says you guys are planning to print a full size canoe, and you've only shown smaller objects. When are you planning to print much larger objects? People I have shown this to don't believe it's possible and wouldn't be worth the tiny investment required compared to other 3D printers

          • http://shadow-whisperer.deviantart.com Shadowhisperer

            I will try to answer this question to the best of my abilities. Right now we are working with a single type of resin that would be unsuitable for the task but we do indeed plan on developing different types, just to get that out of the way.

            Printing a canoe would simply require a large enough tub to hold the resin, a boom to suspend it, a large enough reservoir of epoxy and salt-water, and a laser whose energy drop-off/diffusion will not be noticeable from the dimensions required of such a tub. Since the resin when solidified is only slightly denser that the surrounding water it will not need special supports as it all but floats in the water. At the same time I would not consider the idea of including stand like legs in the 3D model to be printed that could also be easily broken off then the spot sanded to be unreasonable.

            Once again, the resin we are using right now is not suitable for this. Maker Juice is still doing R&R for a variety of cheap resins.

          • http://shadow-whisperer.deviantart.com Shadowhisperer

            Sorry, typo, a boom to suspend the laser assembly.

      • http://www.blendernation.com Bart

        Hey Shadowhisperer,

        thanks for coming over and answering some questions!

        • http://shadow-whisperer.deviantart.com Shadowhisperer

          You are very welcome. Given the sudden surge in popularity of the product I have no idea what I am getting myself into by going out into the open and answering questions (with my real name attached no less!) but, hey. I am giving it a go with a questionable sense of humour. :)

  • Coby

    This is very exciting! A new approach to 3D printing with a low price tag!

    My question is, how durable are the 3D prints?

    Wouldn't it be lovely to have a resin that changes colors based upon laser frequency/intensity? Then you could print full color models, but the audio required for that might be pretty intense.

  • PickleJones

    It looks like the printer is more a "print head" and the volume you print in could be anything vaguely tub-like. The higher above the resin surface the print head sits, the larger the part turns out. They mention "unlimited build volume" and at the bottom of the kickstarter page they say that they want to try to print a full-sized canoe! Definitely has potential.

  • fluxcapacitance

    Elegant design! Looks like a calibration nightmare, but I guess one could stretch the model to fine tune it. Even if the price doubled, it would still be a bargain for an early lithography unit.

  • walshlg

    I worry about the lack of some very important details. Most noticeable is how is the model supported? I see nothing about this in the vid - looks like it just sinks into the salt water. So a bigger model will sink faster! If the model is assymetric in x/y it will twist and tilt.

  • Francisco Ortiz

    Hi folks! I have a question!

    Does the material allows sanding?

    Please develop a resin that allows sanding guys, this is pretty important ;)

  • http://theduckcow.com TheDuckCow

    I don't quite understand why you need to drive the signal through the audio jack as opposed to through USB, and furthermore using the microphone – it seems a bit "hacky". I know many people have accomplished 1:1 servo motor control via USB through blender, so it's definitely possible. With an op amp (super cheap) or two on the printer side, you could also have second channel to report the drip speed instead of having a second wire running into the computer's audio input.

    It just kind of makes me wonder what happens if you have music running in the background or you do something that makes the OS play a system warning sound during the middle of printing ;)

    • http://shadow-whisperer.deviantart.com Shadowhisperer

      All really good questions, ones I have brought up in one form or another but the only one I can truly answer is the first one.

      The reason the audio jacks are used is because the software converts the coordinates of the objects individual segments of volume into audiowaves, used as XY coordinates. The reason the soundcard is used is its accuracy and general ease of use with controlling the servos. Furthermore it possess a resolution in excess of 4 gigapixels, something that is almost universal across all sound cards with negligible deviancy. Why the USB is not used is because of minute defects in the signal that show noticeably on the final print.

      All other questions can be directed to the real techy, Rylan himself.

      http://blenderartists.org/forum/showthread.php?308988-Blender-Runs-new-3d-printer-costing-only-100-dollars!&highlight=peachy+printer

      • http://www.blendernation.com Bart

        Sorry, but that just doesn't sound right. Using the analog audio out you'll always suffer more from signal noise than when using a digital USB signal. Also, 16-bit audio will have an effective resolution of 2^16 = 65536 positions, I'm not sure how you'd ever achieve a range of 4 'gigapixels'?

        The only reason to use the audio jacks that I can think of is to cut costs (but at the expense of quality, I'm afraid).

        • http://shadow-whisperer.deviantart.com Shadowhisperer

          Like I said, I am not a techy. I mean, since I am a 3D artist I need to be able to build my own computers/render farm nodes and maintain the network, OS, hardware, firmware, and drivers but I personally do not understand the more technical side of the hardware and am trying to parrot what Rylan told me.

          I was expecting Rylan to come round by now and clear up any misunderstandings on my part but he has been extremely busy this past week, to a worrisome degree.

          • http://www.blendernation.com Bart

            Sure, no worries! And to be clear: I think the goal of creating a $100 printer allows you to cut corners ;-)

        • kakapo

          65536 for the x axis and 65536 for the y axis = 4294967296 pixels.

        • Wasa

          The main thing I've noticed is the distortion from using an imprecise method for the z-axis. Even the simple cube looks stretched. Having the drop sensors actually makes it even less precise since water can cling instead of dropping. I could be wrong but I'm under the notion that this thing would need to be extremely level else it would slant or bend the model that's printed.

          • Wasa

            Ah just realized something seriously flawed in this method. Unless you account for volume of resin hardened then the larger the model the less precise it becomes.
            Basically +water -resin else your calculations are off for the z-axis

  • http://www.AlexFineArts.com AlexFineArts

    According to the designer it works like a light torch. The farther away the laser beam the bigger the print area. Very promising, "unlimited envelope size"
    Now. What happens when the level of resin gets closer to the origin of the laser beam? The object printed may have some conical distortion, being bigger closer to the base and farther away from the laser beam. When the level of resin raises closer to the laser origin then the object will be smaller. I think it is something that can be addressed by software where the user input the original distance from the resin surface to the laser beam, then the software takes care of the necessary modifications to the file to make up for the conical distortion. Another variable to input is the x and y dimensions of the container for the resin (surface area) since that affects the speed at which the liquid raises. That is providing the container has parallel walls, otherwise shape and volume of the container will come into play. That is only necessary if the user/client provides it's own container.
    The conical distortion will be more evident on very tall objects. The canoe they want to print will be a good example of that since they want to print it vertical. They will also have to calculate in that case the total volume of resin in order not to run short, or drip resin too to make up for the lost.
    I hope some of those issues are already being addressed.
    Note. Is there a way of automatically measuring the distance from the surface to the origin of the laser beam and input that to the software?
    I can not wait to be at least a beta tester.

Share.