"The SLASH is going to completely change the game for desktop, light-cured resin SLA printers." - 3dprint.com
“Print speed, volume, and cost are the three major obstacles 3D printing has been humbled with for years now. The UNIZ Slash 3D printer addresses all three of these in a very convincing manner.” - 3ders.org
"The SLASH seems like it could be a game-changer, if it delivers, and we’d all love to see 3D printing speed up for all of us sooner rather than later." - 3dprintingindustry.com
Are you frustrated with the low speed and high failure rate of laser 3D printers when printing large solid objects? Do you dream of having the speed, resolution, and reliability of a truly professional 3D printer on your desktop? We’ve created an advanced and easy-to-use system that rivals the output of industrial 3D printers at a fraction of the cost.
SLASH is an ultra-high resolution, super fast, liquid crystal display (LCD) contact exposure 3D printer, designed with the goal of achieving high quality 3D prints without sacrificing speed or user friendliness. SLASH performs at the same level of precision and speed as industrial 3D printers while maintaining affordability for everyday consumers. With easy-to-use software that supports a variety of desktop and mobile platforms and cloud integration for sharing and publishing your creations, high quality 3D printing has never been more accessible.
Speed: Printing Time SLASHed
By industrial standard, 3D printing speed is defined as how much volume can be turned into solid per unit time. Traditionally, low cost 3D printers are slow due to their inefficient methods of rendering 3D objects. Plastic (FDM/FFF) and laser SLA printers are among the slowest because of their need to essentially trace out an entire model line-by-line. A better way to construct a 3D object geometrically is to project each slice onto a liquid bath and render it one layer at a time. Digital Light Processing (DLP) and LCD printers work in this way and as a result are the fastest desktop 3D printers to date.
However, speed limitations remain. Both DLP and LCD uses photo-polymerization, which is an exothermal chemical reaction that generates a large amount of heat on the thin separation interface. When printing large solid objects at high speed, the temperature can shortly reach 500-600 Fahrenheit and damages the interface material. Without addressing this problem, the printer cannot go any faster. The DLP printers’ potential for fast prints is hamstrung by its optical path structure, which must remain unobstructed and it limits how much heat can be extracted from the interface.
To overcome this problem, we use LCD contact exposure method that allows us to integrate liquid cooling as near to the interface as possible. This allows large amount of heat to be extracted and enables large solid objects being printed at high speed, and thus achieving higher speed than most other desktop 3D printers. Before SLASH, speeds of 1,000 cc/hr were only achievable with large industrial machines that cost over $100,000, now it can be available in your home.
6.7in-tall solid rook printed at 1350cc/hr solid build volume speed (6.3sec/0.1mm)
2-in hollow spheres printed at 200mm/hr Z pull up speed (1.5sec/0.1mm)
Resolution: Minimum Feature Size SLASHed
With a WQXGA (2560 x 1600, 339 ppi, 75 µm x-y axis) ultra-high resolution IPS LCD screen and ball-bearing screw (10 µm z axis), SLASH is capable of delivering industrial grade accuracy and details. For your reference, a WQXGA DMD chip (used for DLP projectors) alone would cost you over $3,500****. A DLP 3D printer system with this kind of chip, adding image correction optics and other components, is definitely going to be very expensive. On the other hand, with LCD contact exposure technology, SLASH can deliver equivalent results with much faster speed, only at a fraction of the cost.
Reliability: Downtime SLASHed
Our vision of a high performance consumer 3D printer also means it must be as reliable as any other professional tool. Other than consumables, all the mechanical parts of SLASH are designed to last for years. The vat floor of SLASH is made of a specially engineered polymer film lasting up to 1,000 printing hours or 300,000 layers, which is 10- to 100- times more durable than PDMS-based vats. Longer vat life also means significantly less downtime and much higher success print rate.
SLASH in its entirety is designed to be as intuitive as possible. The hardware is designed for a simple, safe, and straightforward experience. The printer features a singular front button that serves a two-fold purpose as the main indicator and a capacitive-sensing print control button. With easy to clean parts, multiple safety features, and an easy slide-in resin cartridge, preparing the printer for your next project is effortless.
The UNIZ software allows you to easily import and print your own models with a proprietary highly customizable smart support generator. An easy-to-use, cloud-based online sharing platform is also provided, you can store, share, and even sell your modeled works online. With the click of a button, watch your choice of creations appear right before you.
Everything from the software interface to the components of the printer itself are designed to provide a straightforward, easy-to-use, and fun user experience, with an added touch of elegance and modernity.
Customizable Z Resolution Profile
Most 3D printers provide you with different settings that allow you to render faster prints at a uniform lower resolution. We have devised a better solution that allows you to select the portions of your model that you want to print in higher or lower resolution. In our software, you can define your own Z resolution profile, choose where you want 10 µm resolution for highest quality or 300 µm resolution for fastest speed.
Together with the online software platform, SLASH printers can also be connected wirelessly to a smart phone or tablet. With the online store built in, you can watch your creations or those of others emerge with just the touch of a button on your iPhone, iPad, or Android-based smart phone and tablets.
The SLASH build materials are eco-friendly and safe for home use. We want the SLASH to work like an everyday appliance, meaning that everything should work perfectly without safety concerns and without releasing unpleasant odors into your home.
zABS (51 MPa strength, 950 MPa modulus) is our first generation home-use resin, it features super-fast curing speed (98% gelation in 1.3sec), low viscosity, and low odor, and will be available at $69 per 500cc bottle. After a successful launch, we will continue the development of an entire spectrum of materials for your different needs, including a variety of colors, flexible, industrial grade toughness, and wax-like materials that are all possible with SLASH.
Infinite Possibilities, Outstanding Results
SLASH is the first 3D printer of its kind. From its inception, SLASH was designed to be mass manufactured using injection-molding to produce high quality componens—sturdy parts that can be produced at low cost without sacrificing quality. The key element – the ultra high resolution LCD screen – is readily available and continues to be improved (thanks to the smart phone and tablet market). The entire system is built to deliver extreme performance and yet be accessible to the everyday consumer. It was not easy, but we did it, and now we are really excited to take the next step and bring SLASH to you.
Our future retail price will be higher than our printer pledge amounts, so take advantage of the DISCOUNTED PRICES now! Our first shipment date will have an LIMITED AMOUNT of 400 printers.
We have been working on developing SLASH for more than two years. During that time, there have been many iterations, and we have developed some remarkable technologies while creating a strong network of manufacturers that has formed a solid supply chain. With your help, we can begin the final steps to bringing affordable, high performance 3D printing to everyone.
We believe that SLASH has the potential to change the game of 3D printing and will set a new standard for desktop 3d printers. Performance and affordability should not be mutually exclusive and our goal with SLASH is to provide users with the absolute best at an affordable price. We need your help on Kickstarter to fully realize this goal and we want to be able to return the favor by giving you the means to create and innovate without the limitations that were previously only surmountable by paying extra.
Z Amazing Team
Everyone at UNIZ has a single-minded focus to deliver an easy and fulfilling 3D printing experience for everyone. To get here has been very rewarding, and we've formed an amazing talented team. We would like to give a special thanks to so many supporters, motivators, and advisors that helped us get to where we are so quickly:
Dr. Houmin Li cofounded UNIZ Tech LLC in 2014 to bring affordable high performance 3D printing technologies to the everyday consumer. Houmin holds Ph.D. and M.S. in polymer engineering from Auburn University, M.S. in electrical and computer engineering from Auburn, M.S. and B.S. in materials engineering from University of Southern California and Tsinghua University.
Thank you for your support!
Disclaimer: The printed figures are used to demonstrate that SLASH can print various objects only. UNIZ Tech does not sell the printed figures. We respects the intellectual property rights of the authors and owners. Please notify us if you find any prints that do not properly identify the author or potentially infringe any rights of the owners. We will take proper measures to resolve the issues.
Risks and challenges
Similar to other crowdfunding projects, we face several key risks and challenges in the 3D printing revolution. The primary risks for us include:
To achieve simplicity in user experience, we must design and engineer a very complex system. We have taken two key steps to ensure our engineering success. 1) We have formed an amazing team of engineers and designers, and 2) we test our printers with an obsession for perfection. In the past two years, SLASH has been built and tested over 12 generations of prototypes and a production run of alpha machines. We will have a run of beta machines with significant user involvement, and we plan to keep enormous amounts of data to guide our future work.
SUPPLY CHAIN AND LOGISTICS
Many crowdfunding campaigns encounter problems when taking their prototypes to production. This includes issues finding suppliers and engineering products for mass-production. Smooth execution is absolutely essential to overcoming such risks. We acknowledge this issue and have been working for months on negotiating with suppliers, testing component quality, and building a team that can execute our promises. Our plans are in place and we now require the resources to implement them.
Finding the right people is a challenge for any endeavor. Success in 3D printing requires a team of talented, passionate, and motivated designers, engineers, and entrepreneurs. We have already formed a truly awesome team, but we will have to bring in more Zers to realize this dream. In fact, we are still actively looking for new members to join UNIZ so we can hit the ground running!
- (30 days)