3D printing has made it into the home office, the starving artist’s studio, and the teenage techie’s basement lab, but even the lower-priced 3D printers can still push the limits of the more modest maker’s budget. UK publisher Eaglemoss Collections has a solution for the more budget-conscious aspiring 3D printing enthusiasts: 3D Create & Print is a partwork plan that lets you build your own 3D printer in 90 weekly installments.
Eaglemoss Collections joined forces with Sebastian Conran, an internationally recognized designer and innovator, to create the Vector 3, the world’s first non-industrial 3D printer with a safety hood. Subscribing to 3D Create & Print for £6.99 per week ($11.00 USD) gets you a weekly publication, six free gifts with your initial subscription, and weekly components for your 3D printer.
Clearly, the partwork plan requires patience. Know-how, on the other hand, is not a prerequisite. That’s because subscribers get support through the entire process thanks to step-by-step guides, software that’s easy to use, and additional support via the 3D Create & Print website. The website will offer a 3D Create & Print Shop that users can visit to purchase tools and multiple colored plastics for their printers.
As you construct your own Vector 3 3D printer, you have the lead time to learn about 3D design and printing thanks to the weekly publication. Getting practice designing objects for printing as you build and learn is great preparation for using and maintaining your own device and nothing says you can’t use an online 3D printing service like Shapeways or Sculpteo to try your hand at printing your own designs. Getting comfortable with what still feels to many people like a high-tech process beyond their reach is one of the benefits of signing on to a DIY 3D printer project like this.
Eaglemoss’s Senior VP of global creative and innovation remarked on the new program and its target market, home-based makers: “In launching this collection Eaglemoss has an opportunity to play a role in making 3D printing technology available for everyone.”
The Vector 3 uses PLA or ABS filament. It features a single 0.20 mm nozzle and layer thickness. The machine weighs 8 kg (a little over 17 lbs) and prints objects up to 5.5” x 5.5” x 5.31”. Software designed specifically for the Vector 3 comes with the parts. The input is STL and the printer is compatible with Windows XP, Windows 7, and Mac OS10 10.8+.
Subscribing is seemingly easy and automatically means users become part of the 3D Create & Print community, sharing printing tips, providing support, and swapping designs. Subscribers will also be able to upload photos and videos and participate in design competitions. It seems that patience will be rewarded and that the process of building your own 3D printer is in itself an invaluable educational experience and bold, exciting, and inexpensive leap into the technology of the future.
Check out this video explaining the complete process:
Would you make your own 3D printer? What do you think of the design of the Vector 3? Let us know your thoughts — and your progress — over at the Vextor 3 3D Printer forum thread at 3DPB.com!