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Formlabs Announces First SLS 3D Printer Along with Form Cell Automated Production System

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Formlabs Announces First SLS 3D Printer Along with Form Cell Automated Production System

byClare ScottJun 5, 20173D Printers3D PrintingBusiness

is famous for SLA 3D printing, having introduced the technology to the desktop with the release of the Form 1 3D printer in 2012. Since then, the company has gone on to become one of the best-known, most well-respected companies in the industry, with the Form 2 regularly appearing on lists of best/most popular 3D printers. Today, Formlabs has taken a big step out of the realm of SLA 3D printing with the announcement that they will be releasing their first selective laser sintering (SLS) 3D printer, the Fuse 1.

Starting at $9,999, the Fuse 1 is 20 times less expensive than the cheapest SLS 3D printers on the market today. The complete package, which includes the printer, a post-processing station with material recovery, an extra build piston for continuous usage, and initial material load, is priced at $19,999.

Available materials include Nylon PA 12 and PA 11, the industry standard for strong, functional prototypes and end-use parts. According to Formlabs, Fuse 1 parts meet or exceed the material properties published by their industrial counterparts.

Several companies have already been testing the Fuse 1, including major corporations like Google.

SLS technology enables designers and engineers to accelerate their prototyping process by combining realistic material properties with the minimization of 3D printing design constraints, said David Beardsley, manager of Google ATAP Skunkworks. With the Fuse 1, a combination of high precision parts, reduced cycle time and robust materials allow teams to easily iterate throughout the design process and accelerate from whiteboard to final parts.

The Fuse 1 was announced today at theDigital Factoryconference, which is being held atMIT Media Lab. Thats not the only major announcement Formlabs has, though theyre also introducing Form Cell, an automated production solution that leverages the Form 2.

When we launched the worlds first desktop stereolithography 3D printer in 2012, Formlabs created new possibilities for designers and engineers to create physical products by giving them access to professional 3D printing technology that had historically been unavailable, said Max Lobovsky, CEO of Formlabs. With Fuse 1, we are taking the same approach to making powerful SLS technology available to a huge range of customers. And with Form Cell, we are making an efficient, scalable production solution by leveraging the Form 2, an SLA print engine thats already stood the test of printing more than 10 million parts.

Form Cell consists of a row of Form 2 3D printers, therecently introducedForm Wash part washer and Form Cure curing station, and an industrial robotic gantry system. Form Cell automates the manual parts of the 3D printing process for a hands-off, lights-out digital factory. Its optimized for the lowest cost per part, allowing business ROI in months instead of years. Users will be able to reduce labor and downtime as no check-ins are required. Features include print job scheduling and error detection, as well as remote monitoring and part and serial number printing.

Form Cell is also factory-ready, with API endpoints for integration with industry-standard business systems such as CRM, ERP, and MES, as well as homegrown systems. It can easily be made part of your existing workflow.

By enabling teams to easily iterate and also to directly manufacture final products, Fuse 1 and Form Cell open up a wealth of innovation flexibility within the product development cycle, from early prototyping to manufacturing, said Dvid Lakatos, chief product officer of Formlabs.

Finally, in a separate announcement,New Balancerevealed that they will be partnering with Formlabs. The two companies will be developing footwear-specific materials and printers for the creation of high-performance products. The announcement comes shortly afterCarbon and Adidas partneredto produce the first partially 3D printed athletic shoe at scale, and now New Balance and Formlabs, both based in Boston, appear to be bringing their own large-scale production of 3D printed athletic shoes to the market. Continuous production at New Balances facility is expected to begin in 2018.

New Balance is excited to work with fellow Boston-based Formlabs on our next evolution in 3D printing, said Rob DeMartini, New Balance President and CEO. We have been a leader with 3D printing technology for many years, when we were the first to bring customized spike plates to our professional runners and have expanded into other sports since then. Now we look forward to taking this technology to consumers to further improve athlete performance.

Were proud to work with New Balance to provide cutting-edge 3D printing technologies for large-scale domestic manufacturing, added Lobovsky. 3D printing gives companies the ability to provide higher performance, better fitting, and more personalized products. With New Balance, we are demonstrating that it can be done at scale for consumer goods.

To learn more about Fuse 1 and Form Cell, watch the videos below:

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Formlabs FORM 1 3D Printer Review

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ByAdminonMay 30, 2013in3D Printer Reviews

Formlabs presents high quality 3D printers. If you are looking for a high quality 3D Printer based on stereolithography technology, you should go through the Formlabs review. The 3D objects should be produced in an effortless manner with minimum price and at high precision. By going through the following lines, you will know about the Formlabs post processing kit which includes printer and software.

Print area: 125 x 125 x 165mm (4.9 x 4.9 x 6.5 inches)

Material: Acrylate Photopolymer Resin

Unit dimensions: 30 x 28 x 45 cm (12 x 11 x 18 in)

Layer Thickness (min): 25 microns (.001 inches)

The build volume of the object is 4.9 x 4.9 x 6.5. The minimum layer thickness is 25 microns. By using the 3D printer that is based on SL technology, it is possible to achieve high quality 3D objects. The objects that are printed through SL technology are far superior to that of the objects produced through FDM. The entire printing process is simplified through the great design and great engineering skills.

Formlabs FORM 1 is made up of SL technology. The quality of prints is directly proportional to the technology used in the printing process. The resolution and surface that you will obtain through SL is the highest in the industry. A thin layer will be solidified when a high precision laser gun directs the liquid resin. The build platform will be ready to prepare the next layer in this process. Hundreds of thousands of repetitions will happen to produce various layers. At last, a high quality 3D object of your choice will be produced through the Formlabs FORM 1 3D printer.

Stereolithography also known as SL or SLA has a number of advantages. It is possible to produce high quality 3D objects through optical fabrication process. This process is also called as photo solidification, solid free-form fabrication and solid imaging system. By using SL technology, you can produce various kinds of models, patterns and prototypes.

There are a number of reasons to go for Formlabs FORM 1 3D Printer. You can expect long shelf life when the products are not exposed to sunlight. The resin can be disposed quite safely without causing harm to the environment. The print job setup is simplified through the intuitive workflow. Part rotation is well supported through the auto-orient option. It is possible to use manual tools for rotation, duplication and scaling purposes.

You will get a Form finish kit which consists of a finishing tray and package of accessories. The workplace can be managed in a clean way and the work can be organized in an efficient manner. After going through the quick finishing touches, you can release the object. There will also be dipping a basket, scraper, tongs and drip trough as part of the Form finish kit.

If you are looking for a high quality 3D print, you can invest in a 3D printer that supports the SL technology. Formlabs FORM1 3D printer has great prospects in this matter.

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Form 2SLA 3D

SLAFDM 3D

SLA3D SLA 3DFDMSLA 3D

Form 2 is a high-resolution desktop Stereolithography 3D printer.As a high-end industrial 3D printer, Form 2s price is relatively low. Form2 utilize Stereolithography (SLA) technology, it can print high-quality model that general FDM 3D printer cant print.

SLA Stereolithography technology has the highest standards of accuracy and resolution in a variety of 3D printing technology. The print quality of SLA 3D printers can even surpass high-end FDM printers. In the process of using Stereolithography technology, the system guides the laser precisely go through the photosensitive resin groove and make the photosensitive resin layer of curing. For the designers, possessing a professional SLA 3D printer is absolutely a matters in their dream.

Form2SLA 3D25140(Minimum Unsupported Wall Thickness)600400145145175mm5.75.76.9

Form2 SLA 3D printer can print the layer thickness of only 25 microns, this is what other 3D printers cant compared with. On the other hand, the laser spot size is only 140 microns, and there is Minimum Unsupported Wall Thickness. That is, when both sides are suspended without support, each layer of the thinnest, can be as small as 600 microns. With support, it can reach to 400 microns thickness. Extremely precise movements create a smooth and impressive surface. The largest build volume is 145 x 145 x 175 mm (5.7 x 5.7 x 6.9 ). For so larger 3D printing models, you can print them in separate sections.

Form 23DForm23D

Form 2s design is very simple, only a gray aluminum base, and an operating button and a small LCD display. The upper orange plastic cover covers the top half of the 3D printer. The orange color is chosen not for aesthetics, but for the engineering design. This kind of hue can prevent ultraviolet light (which will harden the resin) from injecting or leaving form the 3Dprinter. Open the orange cover and you can see the main part of the printer: at the top is the metal building platform, and resin is on the bottom of it.

Form 2 PreForm IPAPreForm

It has been fully assembled and calibrated when the Form 2 comes to your hand. You can immediately use it! All you need is to prepare is a PC to install the PreForm software, the model you want to print, and isopropyl alcohol (IPA), which is used to rinse your finished print. PreForm software and a single-button interface, make the entire printing experience become simple, intuitive, and happy!

Dimensions:35x33x52 cm (13.5x13x20.5 inches)

Print Material: Methacrylate photopolymer resin

Print Area:145x145x175 mm (5.7×5.7×6.9 inches)

Print Surface: Removable metal print bed

Layer Size:25, 50, 100 micron (0.001, 0.002 or 0.004 inches)

Laser Spot Size(FWHM): 140 microns

3DMART Formlabs3DMartSupport

3DMART provides you a one-year warranty as the manufacture Formlabs, and the entire 3D printer tutorial, and follow-up service and after-sales service in the our office or via our Support serive email.

145x145x175 mm (5.7×5.7×6.9 inches)

25, 50, 100 micron (0.001, 0.002 or 0.004 inches)

AC 100240 V 1.5 A 50/60 Hz 65 W

35x33x52 cm (13.5x13x20.5 inches)

PEC*PAD

Build volume145x145x175 mm (5.7×5.7×6.9 inches)

Build plateRemovable metal print bed

Supported materialMethacrylate photopolymer resin

Layer resolution25, 50, 100 micron (0.001, 0.002 or 0.004 inches)

ConnectivityWifi / Ethernet / USB cord

AC input100240 V 1.5 A 50/60 Hz 65 W

Peel mechanismSliding peel process with wiper

Printer controlInteractive Touch screen with push-button

Operating temperatureAuto heats to 35

Dimention35x33x52 cm (13.5x13x20.5 inches)

Finish kitFinishing trayscraperpre and post rinse tubsrinse basketsqueeze bottleflush cutterstweezersdisposable nitrile glovesPEC*PAD wipesmicrofiber clothremoval toolremoval Jig

Formlabs debuts $3499 Form 2 3D printer with better resolution and smarter prints

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Its estimated that the 3D printing marketwill grow to $16.2 billionby 2018, a compounded annual growth rate of 45.7 percent over the five-year period. One company eagerly looking to capture more of this market share isFormlabs, and today it has launched a $3,499 next-generation 3D printer that offers better resolution, bigger prints, improved connectivity, and more.

Nearly four years ago, Formlabs broke onto the scene with aKickstarter campaignwhere it raised over $2.9 million to bring its Form 1 printer to the market. This time, the company has rebuilt its product from the ground up, something Formlabs cofounder Maxim Lobovsky said theyve always dreamed of doing.

The Form 2 printer has at least a few new improvements, including 8GB of memory, Wi-Fi support (no longer will you need to directly connect to the printer), a streamlined interface that features one-click printing, a better touchscreen display with diagnostic readouts, new cartridge types, and better quality control features.

Formlabs says its new product will have 40 percent bigger build volume than its predecessor, the Form 1+, and a laser that is 50 percent more powerful.

Lobovsky and the companys head of global marketing, Colin Raney, told us that the Form 2 printer will let commercial businesses produce items faster and at a much larger scale (which happens tobe a trend pundits have been on the lookout for). They claim that to have this level of technology in a 3D printer before, companies would pay up to $20,000, but now its the price of a laptop.

In the last six months, weve seen that printers are hitting their limits on how people are being entertained, said Lobovsky. People are looking for professional machines.

Formlabs isnt alone in the marketplace, as it competes with MakerBot,Carbon3D, 3D Systems (whichsued Formlabs in 2014), and others.

To encourage customers to upgrade to the Form 2 printer, Formlabs is offering up a discount: $400 off for those with the Form 1 printer, and if youre a Kickstarter supporter, youll get $600 off. The company said that itll be following up directly with customers, and this promotion would likely last through the end of 2015.

The Form 2 printer is available worldwide, sold directly through Formlabs website. Each printer includes a one-year warranty, as well as a copy of the companys PreForm software, one liter of resin for printing, and a finish kit for post-processing needs.

3D Printer Prizefight MakerBot Replicator 2 vs Formlabs Form 1

3D Printer Prizefight: MakerBot Replicator 2 vs Formlabs Form 1

We take a look at two of the newest 3D printers coming to market to see how they stack up on material quality, printing resolution, and cost.

The demand for affordable personal 3D

printers has skyrocketed in recent years, with new models and designs popping up all the time. Budget-conscious enthusiasts, designers, engineers, and small-business owners can still choose from plenty of inexpensive and kit options, but the higher-performance, better-equipped designs seem to have gained the most traction. Two of the best and most talked about 3D printers, the MakerBot Replicator 2 and Formlabs Form 1, were on the scene at theMaker Faire in New York Cityearlier this fall, giving us a good opportunity to compare both printers features and sample prints.

MakerBot first started making a name for itself in 2009 with the introduction of the Cupcake extrusion printer kit. The Thing-O-Matic came out the following year. Then, in early 2012, MakerBot introduced the Replicator, a larger factory-assembled design that promoted the idea of personalized manufacturing. The Replicator signaled a shift in MakerBot strategy: an increased focus on users who want a machine that works with minimal setup and maintenance.

The Replicator 2, announced in mid-September, is MakerBots latest attempt to push into the commercial 3D printer market. A substantial upgrade to the original Replicator, the Replicator 2 features a powder-coated steel frame, a quicker and easier 3-point leveling system, 100 micron (about 1/250-inch) resolution, and a larger build envelope. Also, the sequel is optimized for use withPLA plastic, which is an easier print material to work with than the ABS used by the previous generation.

In addition to the new printer design, MakerBot has announced MakerWare, a software package that prepares model slices up to 20 times faster than before. The company says MakerWare shortens printing times by up to 30 percent by better optimizing the printing path.

Formlabs goal is to bring stereolithographic 3D printing technology to the masses. Where extrusion-type 3D printers squeeze heated plastic through a tiny nozzle to build models up layer by layer, stereolithographic printers involve a precisely aimed laser that polymerizes, cures, and hardens liquid plastic resin.

The Form 1 produces super-smooth models with layers as thin as 25 microns (1/1000 inch) and with x/y features as small as 300 microns (about 1/85 inch). It can print complex designs with intricate features, such as those with a lot of overhang, that even the newest round of low-priced extruder-based printers cannot handle. This makes the Form 1 exceptionally appealing to those designers for whom the print quality of extruder-based 3D printers (at least those in the Form 1s sub-$3000 price range) just isnt good enough.

In September Formlabs launched aKickstarter campaignwith a target of $100,000. The company surpassed this goal in record-breaking speed before filling its coffers with nearly $3 million in pledges. Formlabs is a young company that has yet to even ship out its first printer, but its recent innovations and success on Kickstarter show that it has the potential to stir up and advance the personal 3D-printing market.

We had the opportunity to check out both 3D printers at this falls Maker Faire. After handling sample prints from both printers, it was clear that the Form 1, with its tiny 25-micrometer layers, easily bests the resolution of the Replicator 2 (100-micrometer layers).

The Replicator 2 can print objects as large as 11.2 x 6.1 x 6 inches. The Form 1s max is quite a bit smaller, at 4.9 x 4.9 x 6.5 inches.

Higher resolution aside, the Form 1 can print small-volume models that the Replicator 2 cannot. The Formlabs team does this by supporting dainty structures with thin, breakable structures that the user can remove easily during the finishing stage.

Price (Initial investment and raw materials)

The Replicator 2 is priced at $2199 and the Form 1 is currently $2699 on Kickstarter with an undisclosed future retail price. You also get a form finish kit with the Form 1a set of accessories that is used to clean and separate freshly printed parts.

But theres also the cost of raw materials to consider. One kilogram of the PLA filament used in the Replicator 2 will set you back $48, while 1 liter of resin for the Form 1 is estimated to be priced at $149 (or $129 for early adopters).

For simplicitys sake let us assume that liquid plastic resin has a density comparable to that of water, or 1 gram per cubic centimeter. Thus, resin for the Form 1 would cost $149 per kg, which is about three times the price of PLA plastic filament for the Replicator 2. Even if the Form 1 resin were closer in density to plexiglass, the price would come out to $109/kg (if using the $129 per liter Kickstarter backer price), which is still more than double the price of the Replicator 2s PLA filament. If you want the Form 1s resolution, you pay for it.

Also, the Replicator 2 can be set to hollow out the insides of a model, with a partial infill, if the design does not need to be solid. It is unclear as to whether you can do something similar with the Form 1, but you most likely cannot.

According to MakerBot, the PLA filament use by the Replicator 2 is harder and more brittle than ABS, but it is also less fickle to work with. (Note: In early 2013 MakerBot will release the Replicator 2X, a dual-extruder version of the Replicator 2 that can work with both PLA and ABS.)

Formlabs liquid resin, meanwhile, is an acrylate-based formula, with the cured material possessing mechanical properties similar to ABS but with lower impact strength. Formlabs warns that although the Form 1 can print functional parts, the models mechanical properties might change over time. Although after handling Form 1 sample prints, we are quite confident in the sturdiness of the material.

Sea creature printed by the Replicator 2.

MakerBot currently offers six colors of PLA filament in its online store with the selection expected to grow over time. Formlabs will offer only matte gray resin at the time the Form 1 starts shipping but intends to develop an expanded palette of colors as well as several specialty resins. Short-term, MakerBot offers more colors. Long-term, Formlabs hopes to offer plastic resins that cure with varied properties, such as varied transparency, flexibility, or melting point.

The Replicator 2 is a more affordable investment, both initially and over time. In terms of quality the Form 1 produces smoother prints, but you pay heftily for that ability. If it comes down to versatility, the Replicator 2s larger print capacity and more mature community and support base help make it a better choice as your first 3D printer.

At the Maker Faire we overheard a MakerBot rep telling someone that you dont have to mess around with resin [with the Replicator 2]. This is true, and although heated PLA does not emit fumes to the same extent as ABS does, it is still recommended that you operate it in a ventilated environment. The Form 1 is fully enclosed during printing, but we probably wouldnt want to handle or pour resin without ventilation either. Both seem to be equally suitable for home and office environments as long as you at least keep a window open.

Overall, both printers bring different things to the table and should provide for excellent and near effortless user experiences. Generally, the Replicator 2 seems to be the choice for those looking for versatility and lower raw materials costs, but the Form 1 offers better print quality.

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Formlabs Officially Discontinues Form 1+ 3D Printer

After helping Formlabs become the front-runner in desktop SLA 3D printing, the Form 1+ has officially been laid to rest.

Its a bittersweet day for those who have ever experienced the excitement of using a Form 1+ by Formlabs. The Massachusetts company has announced that their classic SLA 3D printer is officially sold out. The decision will place the new and improved Form 2 alone in the spotlight.

While Formlabs might be shifting their attention away from the Form 1+, it doesnt seem to stem from any trouble within the company. Last year, the company raised a whopping$35 million in Series B funding. They alsoexpanded their global reachandacquired the 3D printing marketplace Pinshape.

Instead, the reason for discontinuing the old machine is attributed to Formlabs focus on the future and faith in the Form 2.

Fortunately, Formlabs has stated that they will continue to support the From 1+ for as long as we reasonably can. This means that, for the time being, customers will still be able to obtain products like build platforms and resin tanks.

The SLA 3D printing pioneer will still provide replacement parts for the Form 1+. They will also honor existing warranties and repair units. Formlabs will continue to sell resin bottles in the Form 1+ store until their stock runs dry. After that, customers can still purchase the same materials, but only in cartridge form.

While you might be hesitant to bid your beloved Form 1+ farewell, Formlabs has a tempting offer to get you to adapt to the newerForm 2model.

Customers can trade in their Form 1+ 3D printer to receive the Form 2 bundle at a discounted price. While the Formlabs team clearly admires the innovation behind the Form 1+, theyve exuded confidence that their latest printer is a major step forward.

Compared to the Form 1+, the Form 2 offers a 40 percent bigger build volume, equalling out to 5.7 x 5.7 x 6.9 inches. The newer model also boasts a customized optical engine, an enhanced peel process, and Wi-Fi connectivity.

The Form 2 is the result of all of the lessons learned from their previous iterations. The team put in over 40,000 hours of work into development and testing their latest printer. Formlabs believes that the versatile Form 2 will grow even more powerful over time.

All in all, aside from sentimental value, theres little reason not to make the switch to the Form 2.

Looking to learn more about their latest SLA 3D printer? Check outAll3DPs review of the Formlabs Form 2 3D printer.

For those interested in trading in their Form 1+ and upgrading to the Form 2, you cancontact the Formlabs sales team.

License: The text ofFormlabs Officially Discontinues Form 1+ 3D PrinterbyAll3DPis licensed under aCreative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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Everything You Need to Know about the Formlabs Fuse 1 SLS 3D Printer

Seans take on the Fuse 1 3D printer from his visit to Formlabs announcement event.

Earlier this month, Formlabs brought me out to the MIT Media Lab forThe Digital Factory, their first digital fabrication conference in conjunction withDesktop Metal. At the event, Formlabs unveiled itsFuse 1 SLS printerand we were given anexclusive behind-the-scenes lookof the machine. Heres everything we know so far about how it works and the prints you can get out of it.

Selective Laser Sintering (SLS)uses a laser to bind together thin layers of a powdered medium (typically nylon) to form a finished model. The finished nylon model is very strong and can have relatively thin walls while retaining strength and flexibility. Any powder that is not sintered by the laser acts as support for the model allowing complex geometries to be printed successfully. Additionally, the entire volume of the print chamber can be packed with models – unlike other technologies that can only utilize the surface area of the print bed. When finished the print is encapsulated by all the loose powder in the build chamber. The print must be allowed to cool in the chamber as it will remain somewhat pliable until cool. The chamber is emptied and all the loose powder is cleaned away from the print. If the model is hollow it will need drain holes in order to remove any loose powder.

Due to the printing process, SLS parts will have a slightly rough surface texture and wont resolve very fine details as well asSLA resin prints. However, prints will be much stronger than most resin prints and cost less. In addition, parts do not need post-curing and are not UV-reactant like resin parts.

Typically SLS technology has only been available as large, industrial machines at $150,000+ so a four-figure benchtop unit is pretty exciting. While Formlabs isnt the first to introduce a benchtop unit at a price under six digits, they are the first U.S. based company to do so and at $10,000–a very reasonable price for a SLS machine.

Keep in mind that the Fuse 1 is still getting the finishing touches, so some details may change once it is released.

The Fuse 1 is about the size of a mini fridge with a build chamber of 165mm x 165mm x 320mm and 100 micron layer resolution. It can run off a standard 15-20A 120V circuit and uses a 10W fiber laser to sinter nylon powder. Initially available materials will be Nylon 12 – an industry standard – strong and with some give and Nylon 11 – a slightly more pliable material. Powdered nylon is added to the machine via a cartridge locked into a feed hopper on the top.

The build chamber is heated to bring the nylon powder close to the melting point. This process takes about an hour from a cold start. The print bed is actually a removable build chamber with a platform that moves downward for each print layer. A precision roller distributes a thin layer of powder across the print area and the laser sinters the cross-section of your model. The platform moves downward, the hopper feeds more powder and the process repeats. The build chamber can be completely filled with parts top-to-bottom and side-to-side with no need for supports as the loose powder does that job. Also, additional models can be added to the print jobduringthe print process!

The Fuse 1 has an internal camera that monitors the print bed, and its very satisfying to watch the laser sinter each layer. Theres a large touch screen up top that allows full control of the printer as well as viewing models loaded for printing. Connection is via ethernet or Wi-Fi via an updated version of their excellentPreFormsoftware.

Once the print job is done the build chamber can be removed and allowed to cool as the prints will be warm and slightly pliable.Eduardo Torrealba, Project Lead for the Fuse 1, said that the industry standard is to let the cartridge cool for the same length of time the print took but they have been doing it in half the time with no issues.

Now we get to one of the downsides of SLS printing: the mess. The parts need to be dumped out of the build chamber along with all the loose powder that acted as support. There will be users who come up with their own systems for dealing with this but Formlabs has provided an option with the cleaning and mixing stations. The cleaning station shown inour videois not the final version and is still under development. It will interface with the build cartridge to monitor the temperature for proper cooling of parts and then raise the platform – pushing out the models and powder into the cleaning area. The perforated bed will allow loose powder to fall through as you clean the parts with brushes and air power. A dust mask is a recommended safety precaution but I suspect the finished product will be fully enclosed.

Reclaimed powder will filter down to an empty cartridge that can be moved to the mixing station where it is combined with new powder for reuse. A typical mix of 50/50 new and used will give good surface quality while a higher mix of used, up to 70%, can be used at the expense of some surface quality although strength will remain the same. I appreciate the fact that Formlabs has provided an option for the post processing AND made it an option as it will run an additional $10,000. For those trying to start up a small print service or business they may buy just the printer and come up with their own post processing system. For those wanting the full setup it will run $20,000 which includes the Fuse 1,twobuild chambers, the cleaning station, mixing station, 10 kg of powder, extra empty cartridges for the mixing station and a pro service plan. The internet has expressed some concerns about handling the nylon powder, breathing it and potential dust explosions. Formlabs has been working on the Fuse 1 for over three years and they assure me all safety precautions are being considered and addressed.

The prints coming out of the Fuse 1 look great. Those familiar with SLS prints typically see them in white, Formlabs is using a dark gray which absorbs more of the energy from the economical fiber laser for better fusing. We saw very strong prints such as the drill housing and bike pedal which can be put into direct service. A big advantage of the SLS method is really nice print-in-place parts such as chains, pivots, joints etc that come right out of the printer working.

The Iron Man gauntlet by Formlabs engineerBrian Chanis an excellent example of what can be achieved with SLS. It comes out of the printer fully assembled with working joints and has some really thin, yet strong features. Take the time to check out Brians impressive work on other projects such as the3D printed violinand hisarticulated creatures.

Another great example is thechainmail bodice by Nervous Systemwhich not only prints out with all the links connected, but is collapsed and packed to fit within the Fuse 1 print volume.

Formlabs offered to do a sample print for me, so I sent myBuckaroo Banzai jet carwhich I have printed many times on the professionalEOS SLS printers. While this print is optimized for SLS printing – hollowed, proper wall thickness, etc – it is also a bit of a torture test with lots of different angles and cross sections, as well as fine detail. Formlabs managed to squeeze the job in just days before the Fuse 1 unveiling and overall its a great print. It had to be shrunk down slightly to fit in the build chamber and notice the black deformation on the front bumper – it was printed on an earlier prototype machine that had the limit switch adjusted differently, so the print stopped with only a few layers to go.

The Fuse 1 print (dark gray) took approximately 22 hours to print, is strong with no warping of large flat surfaces and most of the details resolved well (look at the tire treads). There are a few surface blemishes and irregularities but they are minor. Youll notice that details on the EOS print (black) are a bit sharper for various reasons. The EOS is an industrial machine costing well over $150,000 and the model has also been tumbled–a process using abrasives to smooth out and clean the surface even more. This can also be done with the Fuse 1 prints as well but has not been done on the Formlabs jet car. Finally, the Fuse 1 has not been released to Beta yet, so they are still tweaking settings. I anticipate that a jet car printed a few months from now will look even better.

Formlabs have proven themselves with theForm 2–the amount of software, firmware and material upgrades over the last year has been impressive. As with the Form 2, the Fuse 1 is well thought out with great attention to detail and usability and I look forward to seeing how it progresses over the next few months. Obviously, at a $10,000 price point, this is not a machine for everyone and a powder printing system can be messy. But under the right circumstances this machine is a perfectly reasonable and obtainable expenditure.

Small businesses who want to prototype or even manufacture parts, such as small print services, architecture firms, makerspaces, etc can make great use of a machine in this price range and it should pay for itself quickly. Another factor to keep in mind is that whileyoumay not be able to afford the machine, at this price point local fabricators and print shopswillhave them which will make SLS printing more accessible and cheaper for you to use as a service. You might be able to walk into a local shop and talk to an actual person to get your prints done.

While the complete $20,000 system with cleaning and mixing stations, extra build cartridge and service plan is ideal, its nice that there is an option to buy just the printer for those adding more to the print farm or those on a tighter budget who want to develop their own post-processing systems. The final material cartridges are still in development but pricing should be around $100/kg – the build chamber holds about 5.5 kg.

Fuse 1 Beta units are scheduled to go out toward the end of the year with production units shipping sometime in 2018. Stay tuned as Tested will be getting a system to try out–Zorg ZF-1, anyone?

Check out our behind-the-scenes video of the Fuse 1

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The thinnest layer height of filament material the 3D printer can print. The thinner the layer height, the more detailed the final result.

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The Formlabs Form 1+ is a SLA desktop 3D printer manufactured by Formlabs, a Massachusetts-based company founded in September 2011.

The Formlabs Form 1+ is an upgraded version of the Form 1, the first 3D printer designed by Formlabs. Compared to its predecessor the Form 1+ istwice as fast with a laser 4 times more powerful. Formlabs introduced theForm 2September 2015.

This 3D printer uses the Stereolithography (SLA) technology. The Form 1+ uses a laser to selectively photocure liquid resin and 3D print an object layer after layer. This technology allows avery high level of detail and is compatible with a wide variety of resinssuited for different applications: Standard, Castable, Flexible and Tough.

The Formlabs Form 1+ is a powerful 3D printer for hobbyists and professionals such as jewelers or dentists.The performance of the Formlabs Form 1+ is amazing at this price level but it is expensive to operate even with generic resin (which does not come cheap). The resin tank should be replaced every three liters of resin.

This 3D printer has been selected asone of the best Resin options in the 3D Hubs 2015 report.

The Formlabs Form 1+ manufacturer price is $3,299.

We index ratings and reviews from trusted sources to calculate a reliable aggregate rating we call Metascore.

The Formlabs Form 1+ is a SLA desktop 3D printer manufactured by Formlabs, a Massachusetts-based company founded in September 2011. The Formlabs Form 1+ is an upgraded version of the Form 1, the first 3D printer designed by Formlabs. Compared to its predecessor the Form 1+ is twice as fast with a laser 4 times more powerful. Formlabs introduced the Form 2 September 2015. This 3D printer uses the Stereolithography (SLA) technology. The Form 1+ uses a laser to selectively photocure liquid resin and 3D print an object layer after layer. This technology allows a very high level of detail and is compatible with a wide variety of resins suited for different applications: Standard, Castable, Flexible and Tough. The Formlabs Form 1+ is a powerful 3D printer for hobbyists and professionals such as jewelers or dentists. The performance of the Formlabs Form 1+ is amazing at this price level but it is expensive to operate even with generic resin (which does not come cheap). The resin tank should be replaced every three liters of resin. This 3D printer has been selected as one of the best Resin options in the 3D Hubs 2015 report. Formlabs Form 1+ price The Formlabs Form 1+ manufacturer price is $3,299.

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