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The EX¹ makes printing circuits as quick and easy as printing a photo - allowing you to print on the material of your choice.
The EX¹ makes printing circuits as quick and easy as printing a photo - allowing you to print on the material of your choice.
307 backers pledged $137,356 to help bring this project to life.

Conductivity and Open Source


Hi Guys! We’re absolutely thrilled to pass our funding goal so quickly, and thanks to you we have some fun announcements in store!

We’ve been working really hard over the past two days to put together some cool videos, which we hope will answer a few questions that keep coming up. So here it goes…

How does the conductivity of prints with the EX¹ compare to that of copper?

We’ve had lots of excellent questions about how our prints compare to conventional PCBs made from copper. We thought a video would be far more interesting than us prattling along for a few paragraphs. Here’s a side-by-side comparison of a copper trace we etched with one printed in the EX¹!

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As some of you may have guessed, the silver nanoparticles which the EX¹ prints do have a lower conductivity when compared to a copper trace of the same size. This isn't an issue however because you can print as much (or as little) silver to get the conductivity you need. With each layer you add the resistance decreases!

Can you solder to circuits printed with the EX¹?

You wanted to know whether or not you could solder to circuits printed with the EX¹. Here’s a video showing you that not only can you solder to circuits, but just how cool it looks when the solder reflows. As it turns out the silver nanoparticles act as a sort of sponge, attracting the solder!

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Is the EX¹ open source?

You, our community is spectacularly important to us. After careful thought we have decided to go open source, and we’re really excited to see how everyone can improve the EX¹ printer. 3D printing has progressed so far in such a short amount of time. This would not have happened if there was just one company working on it in isolation; after all… the first time around (circa 1980) 3D printing took a good 10 years to develop to the point where it was useful.

We’re a bunch of hobbyists who don’t want to lock our products down, when we know you guys can add to our vision and make them better.

We’ll be making all the hardware, electronics and software completely open source from the time we start shipping. Innovation comes when someone thinks “I can do that better”. To that end we’re so excited to see what improvements you can make.

Thank you all for your support!

Team Cartesian Co.

Jack Goodrich, Rudy De Volder, and 4 more people like this update.


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    1. Cartesian Co. Creator on

      @Charles & Emma, thanks, we really want to do what's best for the community and open source is definitely the way to do it and @Charles, we're excited to see what you do to your printer.

      @Hugues reflow soldering is totally the best thing ever! You can see how much I (Ariel here) enjoyed doing it too. It's a bit like magic when the solder just melts and goes where you want it to.

      Thanks for the comments about the videos. We'll try to make more of them soon so everyone can see the amazing things that the EX¹ can do.

    2. Emma Seddon on

      Very excited about you guys going open source. Love the videos too

    3. Heather Delaney on

      Really great videos, thanks for the update.

    4. Hugues Laliberte on

      oh, i like this kind of solder,
      congrats guys, i might one day make my own printed circuit !

    5. Missing avatar

      Charles Lehman on

      Thumbs up for the open source decision. I backed this project with one of the early bird special pledges, and I'm looking forward to hacking with it. I'm also very much looking forward to the results of your research into printing multi-layer circuits that you mentioned in the proposal.