About this project
Thank you for stopping by! Check back each week, as I will post a new video showing and highlighting the amazing power of the Vision 3D Printers. If at the end of 4 weeks, you don't want a 3D Printer . . . you never will.
So what can you make with a 3D Printer???? Apart from making parts to make more 3D printers, you can make tools, models, prototypes, artwork, organizers, nameplates, and toys to name a few. I am creating "Golf-In-Miniature" an 18 Hole Miniature Golf Course using my 3D Printers. Here are the first 9 Holes:
It is the basis of my forthcoming 3D Printer Tutorial. It will walk you through the steps from downloading a 3D model, to printing 3D models well, to modifying other peoples models, to finally creating your own. You don't have to complete the tutorial, but it is designed to help you master 3D printing. You don't have to purchase a Vision 3D Printer to download and print the models. They are Here: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:24670 free to download and print if you wish. Download all of the models, and you will own your own 18 Hole Golf Course - "Golf-In-Miniature". Enjoy! Note: All plastic pieces (with the exception of the 8 minifigs) were created with my 3D Printers in only 9 days from scratch! My printed Minifigs are coming in the next 9 Holes.
The Problem - 3D printer kits have come down in price, but are still fairly high in frustration. Although the kits are "affordable", the lower upfront cost assumes you have a toolbox full of tools, your free time is abundant, and your free time is worthless. Your time is VALUABLE! It shouldn't take months of weekends to build and debug a 3D Printer. On top of that, 3D Printer companies praise "customization" but will only sell you the exact same 3D printer they sell all of their "customers" - The Vision 3D Printer allows you the freedom to order a truly custom machine tailored for You!
Here is a Video of a Vision Hometeam 3D Printer printing "LOVE Sculpture" by phineasjw on Thingiverse. Total Print Time = 44 minutes, pared down to a 6 minute video.
On top of that, the world is changing, 3D modeling is used in everything from the movies we watch, to the toys we play with, to the computer we use, to the cars we drive. Having a 3d printer is wonderfully motivating for learning 3d modelling. The world is growing more dependant on 3d modelling every day. The greatest part of having a 3d printer is that you don't even have to be a designer to find and make your own parts. Websites like Thingiverse or Google 3d Warehouse have thousands of free 3d models already available. Once you find a model you like, you can easily scale and print it. Or you can use very powerful open source software to alter existing models, or create 3d models from scratch. Two of the most popular are Blender and Google Sketchup.
This is why I designed The Vision 3D Printer. It is a quick build, optimized RepRap LM8UU Linear Bearing Prusa Mendel capable of printing 3D objects in ABS or PLA plastic. It has over 150 FEWER parts, is more rigid, comes with ALL tools needed for assembly (including a pair of Digital Calipers), comes with a fully built extruder (hot and cold ends), comes in custom colors, and has integrated RGB LED Lighting! Quick Build is Right - it builds in 1/3 the time of a standard RepRap Prusa Mendel, 1/5 the time of an Ultimaker, or 1/4th the time of a MakerBot Thing-O-Matic. The Prusa Mendel is RepRap.org's most popular 3D printer. RepRap started the Open Source 3D Printer revolution. 3D Printing just got more Awesome!
Because it is a variant of RepRap's most popular printer, it will take advantage of any improvements yet to come. The largest and most notable change in the Vision 3D Printer is that nearly 70 parts (including 8 RP parts) were eliminated by the 2 main 1/2" (12mm) clear cast acrylic sidewalls. The acrylic sidewalls with the RGB LED strips allow the frosted edges to glow in the colors of your choice. Every tool you need will be included in your kit! There is no need to solder anything, the electronics are pre-assembled. You won't need to fiddle with crimping wires since all motors, endstops, and lighting are already pre-wired with connectors. And you won't need to make any trips to the hardware store for parts. (But, you can still make trips for FUN, after all hardware stores are COOL.)
If "Plywood" isn't your color, we've got you covered! Isn't 3D printing about custom parts? Why do all printers look the same? I don't think they should, so we are raising the bar and lowering the barriers for customization. No longer are black, white, and plywood the only colors available.
The Vision "Basic" 3d Printer - is the low cost entry into the Vision Series of 3D Printers. It comes in one of 4 colors (Black, White, Natural ABS, or Natural PLA) and has the same setup as other Vision "Standard" 3d Printers, but without a Heated Build Platform needed for flat ABS Plastic Prints.
The Vision "Standard" 3D Printer Series - has a 8.9" x 8.9" x 5.5" (225mm x 225mm x 140mm) work envelope AND you can have the RP (3D Printed) parts any color we offer of over 25 different colors including Glow In The Dark!With our Vision Standard 3D Printer Series, you can get your printer in the color you want.
The Vision "HomeTeam" 3D Printer Series - We didn't stop there, and you don't have to either! If you want or need total customization, the Vision HomeTeam is for you. Every single 3D printed part on the Vision "HomeTeam" is printed in the 2 or 3 colors you choose from our 25+ color selection! OVER 17,000 color combinations! You can chose your school, team, patriotic, or your favorite colors! A Vision HomeTeam 3D Printer pledge allows you the freedom to order a custom machine tailored for YOU!
The Vision "Plus" 3D Printer Series - has a 8.9" x 8.9" x 8.9" (225mm x 225mm x 225mm) work envelope to make taller and larger 3d Parts. Pick your own color scheme like the Vision "Hometeam" AND make bigger parts!
The Vision "Bigfoot" 3D Printer Series - because you know more IS more! The Vision Bigfoot 3D Printer has a full 12.25" x 12.25" x 12.25" (311mm x 311mm x 311mm) work envelope - to easily make ONE HUGE GREAT BIG CUBIC FOOT of anything you want to print! (For those of you that like the Metric System - more than 30,000 cubic centimeters!) Let your 3D prints be limited by your imagination, not by your printer's work envelope. The Vision Bigfoot 3D Printer can Sasquatch the competition.
Open-Source Hardware - All Vision 3d Printers are Open-Source Hardware, we will provide the documentation and drawings once we start shipping the Vision Series Printers. Up until we ship, if we find better ways to make our printers even better, we reserve the right to make changes. As Open Source Hardware, you will be able to modify, copy, or improve the Vision 3d Printer - and we will cheer you on!
Software - All Vision 3D Printers use Open-Source Software and as such, the software and updates (including firmware) will never cost you anything. The incredible part is that the software is VERY POWERFUL and extremely useful. For Modeling and Editing 3D Models, I like Blender and Google Sketchup real well. For slicing & G-Code (the machine language the printer uses) downloads, I like Slicer, Sfact, and Pronterface. For firmware, I love Marlin - it is zippy, and will be pre-installed in the printer's electronics.
Dual Extruders - We are also offering the Vision HomeTeam, Vision+, and Vision Bigfoot 3D Printers with the option of having a second Extruder included in the kit or assembled printer. Having 2 extruders is a hot topic lately, but still in the experimental stage. All of our Dual Extruder 3D printers will come with the electronics / mechanics needed to integrate it into the printer. As the software develops, the printer will have the ability to print in 2 colors, or with 2 materials.
Where Are We Now? - These Vision 3D Printers were produced in our machine shop using precision CNC (Computer Numerical Controlled) machines. Vision 3D Printers are themselves CNC machines and true to RepRap they can build a large number of their own parts to make even more machines like themselves. Every Vision 3D printer has a large number of parts that were made on another RepRap 3d Printer and all future Vision 3D Printers will be made with parts from other Vision 3D Printers. See, we don't just make printers for others. We make 3d printers that we like to use, so they in turn can make 3d printers for others! Truly useful machines. The Vision 3D Printers shown are Production Intent Prototypes, the last step before full production. We already have the drawings, CNC machine programs, Bill of Materials, and staging already done so that we could make 100-400 printers per month with little or no changes. We are manufacturers, so the more the better. With more orders, we will set up an assembly line, hire more workers, and scale up production. All of our 3D printers will be Made in the USA in Illinois to be shipped anywhere in the world.
Plastic Filament Supplies & Printer Media
With our plastics background and the need to purchase our filament in quantity, we will order our plastic filament in bulk and set up our own in house filament extrusion line with computerized process control. We already have a couple thousand lbs of PLA and ABS resin in stock.
Lately, 3D plastic filament prices have increased due to supply and demand. The demand for 3D plastic filament has outpaced the supply, so the prices have raised. We can rebalance this by increasing the supply of high quality filament. The increase in supply will lower the price of the plastic filament that most open source printers use. If you already have a 3D printer, please support us by pledging to purchase filament from us. Once our filament line is set up, and our kickstarter orders are met, we will start producing X-Batches of experimental plastic filaments to broaden the types of plastics used in 3D printing. Our Kickstarter backers will get first dibs on any X-Batch we produce. We would like to produce plastic filament in PS (Polystyrene - like clear CD Cases), HIPS (High Impact Polystyrene -like toy instruments), Acrylic (like car tail lights), PC-ABS (like cell phone and laptop cases), and PC (Polycarbonate - like car headlights and bullet resistant glass). Currently, only 1 type of ABS and 1 type of PLA are used, but other types of plastics could and should be used. By pledging to purchase plastic or Vision 3D Printers from us, we will research and develop better materials to make better models. All of our Filament will be the highest quality plastic along with tight ±0.1mm tolerance diameter for smooth hassel free prints. All of our filament will also be ROUND (not oblong or inconsistent filament that tends to print poorly and jambs up printers).
How Much can 1 lb of plastic Make?
All of the parts in this photo weigh a total of 1 lb (produced at 20% infill).
Note: The string like structures inside of Starno's Coin-Operated Bottle Opener adds a great deal of structure, but saves on plastic when it's not needed.
Colors of Plastic
- Glow-In-The-Dark Classic (Yellow/Green) (ABS only)
- Glow-In-The-Dark Orange (ABS Only)
- White (Yes, even ABS is real white, not just Narual ABS - which is not white)
- Yellow (Gold)
- Lime Green (Light Green)
- Kelly Green
- Dark Green
- Baby Blue (Light Blue)
- Royal Blue
- Carnation Pink (Light Pink)
- Old Gold
- Natural (for PLA it looks clear, for ABS it looks Cream colored)
- Translucent Green (PlA only)
- Translucent Red (PLA only)
- Flourescent Green (ABS only)
- Flourescent Yellow (ABS only)
- Brick Red (ABS only)
YES, 25 different colors! (26 if you consider that Natural PLA and Natural ABS look different!
(versus normal 3d Printers or Prusa Mendel Printers)
- 150+ (close to 200+) Fewer Parts than Standard Prusa Mendel Printers
- Z Height Adjustment Thumbscrew where 1 revolution = 0.5mm for Accurate Z Height Homing - the first layer is the most important, and this will help you get it right
- Strain Relief for Heated Bed Wires
- Heated Bed (standard for all but the Vision "Basic" Printers)
- Fine Pitch Belts for increased resolution
- Metric Z Axis Lead Screws with 1mm/rev threads - for better performance
- LM8UU Linear Reticulated Ball Bearings on ALL Axis for higher precision, better prints, and faster print speeds
- Super Smooth Hardened Precision Ground Smooth Rods on ALL Axis
- Metal (Not Printed) Gears for X & Y Axis for superior precision and better prints
- Smaller Diameter X & Y Pulleys for increased resolution
- Urethane Vibration Isolation Pads (for quieter operation)
- 24 Bit RGB Light Strips integrated into the Isolation Pads for 16 million+ colors for the sidewalls Customizable color, changeable anytime by YOU
- CNC'd Clear Cast Acrylic Sidewalls with Frosted Edges for superior toughness, flatness, rigidity, tighter tolerances, and optical clarity turning the sidewalls into super cool LED Walls
- Tightened Hole Tolerances for better performance, and less vibration
- Pre Assembled Extuders - both Hot and Cold Ends for quick assembly
- Built-In Electronics mount into sidewalls to improve the look and reliability of the Vision 3d Printer
- Marlin Printer Firmware pre-installed - the most advanced 3d printer firmware available with built in look ahead acceleration
- Micro SD Card Built in for smoother printing of large detailed models
- Much More Rigid than Standard Reprap Prusa Mendel
- Custom 3d Printer from Day #1
- 3mm or 1.75mm Filament (Backer's Choice)
- Built in Fan Control
- PID Temp Control of both Extruder and Heated Bed
- Most advanced open source kit / assembly available
- Cabinet Grade Plywood for Heated Bed Backer (might be changed to Polycarbonate or Aluminum - we're testing all 3)
- Z Motor Vibration Isolation Mounting Pads - to further decouple Z motor vibrations for better prints
- No SOLDERING needed!
- All motors & endstops prewired with connectors!
Vision "Basic", "Standard", or "Hometeam" 3d Printers
- Work Envelope (Max Build Volume) 225mm x 225mm x 140mm (8.9" x 8.9" x 5.51")
- Plastic Materials Used: PLA or ABS
- Filament Diameter: 1.75mm or 3.0mm (Backer's Choice)
- Nozzle Diameter Supplied : 0.35mm (other sizes will be available)
- Print Speed: Up to 250mm/s (user selectable - we use 80mm/s outlines and 150mm/s infills ourselves to produce great parts)
- Supply Voltage: Variable 100-250 VAC 50/60 hz
- Heated Build Platform - for ABS or PLA parts that don't warp (included in all Vision Printers except the Vision "Basic")
- Glass Build Surface - for VERY FLAT PARTS included with PET (Kapton) Tape and Blue Tape Samples - 3 most popular build surfaces for 3d printers!
- Micro SD Card Reader Included in electronics
- USB Port Required
- Vibration Isolation Footpads for quieter operation
- ALL Vision Printers Come with RGB LED Strips (capable of 24 bit color - over 16 million colors) integrated in their Vibration Isolation Footpads
- Layer Height: User Selectable .01mm (or even lower if you dare) to 0.5mm (user selectable)
Vision "Plus" (AKA Vision+) 3d Printers
- Everything same as above but with a Maximum Work Envelope of 225mm x 225mm x 225mm (8.9" x 8.9" x 8.9")
Vision "Bigfoot" 3D Printers
- Everything same as above but with a Work Envelope of 311mm x 311mm x 311mm (12.25" x 12.25" x 12.25")
We will be manufacturing the Vision 3D Printers in Central Illinois on a first come first serve basis, using CNC machines and kitted or assembled in our shop. The sooner you order, the sooner your printer will arrive.
Thank you for looking at our Kickstarter Campaign and letting me share my Vision and my Dream.
Thank you Eric Skiff for the music, Chibi Ninja.
Thank you RichRap for your wonderful blog.
Thank you RepRap community, a great organization which is filled with some of the world's greatest thinkers, programmers, engineers, tinkerers, plodders, critics, designers, modellers, makers, doers, and dreamers! There is always room for more, so please take a look.
We are a part of the Kicking It Forward project, and believe in supporting other worthwhile Kickstarter projects. To find out more, please visit http://kickingitforward.org
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