Large-volume LPD 3D printers are widely used in various industries from automotive to aerospace. A team of former Ferrari engineers is working with our M300 model to prototype parts for their ultra-light motorcycle made almost entirely of carbon fiber. NASA is using the same Zortrax 3D printer to make functional models of tools that one day will help astronauts on missions to asteroids and other planets. Now, we have designed a new large-volume 3D printer for this kind of ingenious people and their ground-breaking projects. We call it the Zortrax M300 Dual.
Three Challenges We Faced
Our work began with identifying top three challenges professionals face in working with large 3D printers. Here’s the list we came up with:
- Complex geometries are often necessary even in relatively large models
- The cost of failure is very high as each failed print can cause a missed deadline
- An access to a wide range of build platforms and special-purpose filaments is crucial
The M300 Dual has been designed from the ground up to meet those three challenges. And it does just that and way more.
How We Solved Large Complex Models
The printer works in the LPD Plus dual-extrusion technology which means it can 3D print simultaneously with two filaments: one for the model, and one for the water-soluble support structures.
Because water can remove supports even from almost inaccessible places that can’t be manually reached with tweezers, the M300 Dual can 3D print models with intricate internal geometries and movable mechanisms that would have been impossible for a single-extrusion 3D printer.
Moreover, the LPD Plus technology can boost up the production output when the printer is used for manufacturing. Soluble support makes it possible to stack batches of parts up one on top of the other. This way the entire build volume measuring 265x265x300 mm is used in each working cycle. The M300 Dual also supports a single extrusion mode where it works just like a standard M300 Plus machine.
How We Brought the Cost of Failure Down
Large-volume 3D printers tend to have longer work cycles than smaller ones because it takes more time to print large models. Such machines can run incessantly for several days to make one really big model. When a failure occurs close to the end of the cycle, that’s several days lost for the business. To deal with it, we have pinpointed three most prevalent causes of failed prints. It usually happens when:
- There’s a power outage
- The filament gets jammed
- The filament runs out
We have designed the M300 Dual to save the print and easily recover from each of those events. The printer can detect a power outage. It’s built-in capacitors at all times store enough energy to keep the machine going until the exact position of the printing head is saved. This way the print can be resumed from the same spot when the power is back on. Same thing with the filament problems.
There are two filament sensors in the M300 Dual. One is placed close to the spool holder and is meant to detect when the filament runs out. The other one is fitted in the printing head to detect when the filament got jammed or the nozzle got clogged. In both those scenarios the printer will switch to a pause and notify the user. Again, the work can be resumed from the same spot when the problem has been dealt with.
How You Can Work the Way You Want
Professionals usually expect their tools to be highly customizable. This way they can tailor their setup to better fit the particular project they’re working on at the moment. That’s why we have made the M300 Dual capable of supporting a wide range of third-party filaments and build-platforms. What’s even more important, we’ve made the printer work with them as seamlessly as though they were dedicated components or materials.
The build-platform in the M300 Dual is automatically calibrated with a capacitive displacement sensor. This sensor can perform high-resolution measurements of the position of any conductive or nonconductive target. That’s why both perforated and glass build-platforms can be automatically calibrated just by pushing a button.
In fact, a user can opt for a build-platform made of material we didn’t even think of. The M300 Dual will support it.
Same thing with the filament. The printer works with all third-party filaments available on spools in both single and dual-extrusion modes. That enables professionals to work with all the filaments they need in the setup they think is best. The M300 Dual has been designed based on their feedback. We’ve just engineered it into reality.
Here you can learn more about the M300 Dual. If you are a media representative and have additional questions please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our press release regarding the M300 Dual can be found here.