We have been advocating for 3D printing for quite some time. If you’re new to the topic, check out What is 3D printing. Today we will be talking about Markforged, a 3D printer manufacturer working in Boston. The company has announced two new models, the X3 and X5. Both of these 3D printers have been designed to create objects that are carbon fiber-infused. They utilize a standard filament printing system and both printers are capable of 3D printing objects that can replace or are stronger when compared with steel.
Both of the printers manufactured by Markforged feature auto-levelling and scanning systems that help ensure that each 3D printed object is the same each time. The printers make use of Markforged’s unique thermoplastic fiber filament and the X5 is capable of adding a ‘strand of continuous fiberglass, in order to 3D print objects that are 19X stronger and 10X stiffer than conventional plastics. The end result? You can 3D print both usable parts and tools from the same machine and thanks to the fiberglass weave, you can be sure that the pieces won’t break on you during use.
For instance, a customer has 3D printed a custom valve wrench in only TEN minutes by making use of one of these printers by Markforged.
— Quest Integration (@Q_Integration) August 21, 2017
The only hitch is the cost factor. The X3 will cost you $36,990 while the X5 will cost you $49,900. The 3D printers are aimed at local manufacturers, as Markforged calls them. However, you won’t be stuck with X3 in case you outgrow it; X3 can be upgraded with ease to work with X5’s filament. Both of these 3D printers are aimed at manufacturing shops that have too create finished products on the go.
Greg Mark, CEO Markforged said, “Customers can now, with ease, print same-day parts that optimize strength and affordability for their specific needs.”
Owing to the intricate measurement and scanning systems that have been built into these units, users are able to receive a 3D printer model and print it out to exact specifications. Markforged has also incorporated a failsafe mode that allows, in case of restarts, to ascertain exactly where did the 3D printing stopped and resume the process from that exact point. Markforged is also working on some amazing metal printing technologies that will enable the company’s 3D printers to 3D print parts that can be used in complex machines.