It’s funny, every month there seems to be a new trend which emerges around the new 3D printers coming to market. As you know, Kickstarter has been a hotbed for the 3D printing space. Some days two or three new 3D printer manufacturers launch their product on the crowdfunding platform, many of which just blend into a landscape of the dozens of 3D printers which are near copies of past machines that we have seen, while others innovate and actually provide something new, of value, to the quickly expanding market.
In the last couple of weeks, we have noticed a trend of new machines launching which feature 3D printing capabilities along with at least one other manufacturing method. For instance, just yesterday the 5AXISMAKER, a 3D printer, CNC mill and wire cutter, all raveled up into one small machine, launched on Kickstarter. Here we are, one day later, covering another machine which can harness the capabilities of several different manufacturing techniques. The OmniMaker launched on Kickstarter recently, aiming to raise $25,500 by October 21.
The machine, which actually comes in three different sizes, as you will see in the image below, uses a modular framework to eliminate the problem of obsolescence and lack of versatility.
“Have you been putting off purchasing a rapid prototype machine because you didn’t know what technology you wanted?” Asks their Kickstarter campaign page. “We at OmniMaker finally have solved your dilemma. We have figured out a way to make one machine quickly and easily accept plug-and-play modules that can totally change the nature and the capability of the machine.”
The Omnimaker’s use of a modular system allows for a quick and affordable transformation of one type of machine into a machine with several different manufacturing capabilities. Whether it is an FDM 3D printer, a SLA 3D printer, CNC Mill, or 3D digital scanner, these are all possible with the OmniMaker Modular Rapid Prototype Machine.
The way it works is quite simple. The base of the OmniMaker remains, but the head unit, which houses the various different tools is what changes. These head modules simply snap onto the top of the base, almost instantly changing the capabilities of the OmniMaker. Currently the team has modules available for a FDM Extruder, SLA Resin printer, CNC Mill, and digital scanner. They envision producing several other modules as their business develops. Some of their ideas include:
- Carbon-fiber printer
- Frosting printer
- Candy or chocolate maker
- Laser sintering printer
- Vinyl sign maker
- 4 axis robotic spray painter
They also want to offer the option to members of the OmniMaker community to create their own modules and resell them on the OmniMaker website. There are several size options, both with or without modules, available for those looking to help fund the project on Kickstarter. If everything goes as planned, the company expects to deliver the very first OmniMaker machines in April of next year.
Let’s hear your thoughts on this new modular machine. Do you plan on backing it on Kickstarter? Discuss in the OmniMaker modular 3D Printer forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out the Kickstarter pitch video provided below:
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