I’ve been thinking about SLA 3-D printers lately, and am posting to the mailing list to start a discussion…
SLA = stereolithography, also sometimes called “resin” printing. Thus technology uses a UV laser to solidify a photo-sensitive plastic resin. Layers are built up by moving the build platform vertically in the resin. It’s been used in industry for awhile but just within the last year or so has become more available for hobbyists.
Advantages compared to fused filament printers like the Gigabot:
- Much finer detail, tiny layer height
- print most overhangs without support
printers more expensive
resin more expensive than filament (~3x cost/volume)
smaller build area
I think that Hive13 should have one of these. It would allow people to make things like jewelry, gaming miniatures, etc. Also could draw some interest to Hive since SLA printers are still pretty rare for home DIYers.
Form 1: ~$3300 assembled, closed source. http://formlabs.com/products/our-printer
B9 Creator: ~$2400 for kit, $3400 assembled, open source. http://b9creator.com/
Muve 3D: ~$1600 complete kit, less for partial kits; open source. http://www.muve3d.net/press/