CC image courtesy of Denis Gomes Franco
3D printers produced by RepRapPro are now available to the public, providing a means for a low-cost printer that has the ability to replicate itself.
The RepRapPro Omerod allows for open source 3D printing process that provides printing speeds of 1,800mm a minute.
Due to the nature of its open source design, the Omerod has the ability to recreate its own plastic components, enabling the creation of other Omerod printers.
“3D printing is fast becoming an essential part of the electronic and mechanical design process. Increasing numbers of companies are beginning to see the benefits of using this technology to create quick-turn-around prototypes and save months in the design cycle. Barriers to adoption in the past have been the cost of hardware and a lack of easy-to-use design software for non-CAD specialists,” said distributors RS Components in a statement.
The printer makes use of fused filament fabrication (FFF), depositing a filament of a material – such as plastic or metal – on top of an area containing the same material, creating a joint.
This process allows to a user to “create almost any shape that can be modeled on a computer, including some that cannot be produced by traditional manufacturing techniques,” said RS Components.
“While the Ormerod is a monochrome 3D printer that has been configured to work with one type of plastic at a time, the device is fundamentally designed to work with three-colour deposition; an upgrade kit is to be made available soon.”