bq4As I walked around CES this week there was one theme this year that stood out in the 3D printing section of the show: 3D scanning. It seemed like every fifth or sixth booth had some sort of scanner being showcased. Most impressive thus far has been Fuel3D’s handheld point-and-shoot scanner, but probably the most unique scanner we’ve seen was by a company called bq, based out of Spain.

Bq manufactures smartphones, tablets, E-readers, 3D Printers, and now 3D scanners, and was present at CES to showcase several products, including their new Ciclop 3D scanner. The scanner, which utilizes laser triangulation methods and a rotating turntable, is actually 3D printed itself.bq1

We were told that the Ciclop is not available for purchase as of yet but will be later this year for under $500. Additionally, the design is entirely open source, and the files one can use to 3D print its main components will be made available online free of charge. This means that anyone equipped with a 3D printer and a bit of mechanical skill can build the Ciclop within a few hours, quite affordably, by only purchasing the electronic components.

The machine itself, once built, is quite a capable 3D scanner. Below you will find some of its specifications:

  • Scanner size: 450 x 330 x 230 mm Dim
  • Scanning area. 205 x 205 mm
  • Scanner Weight: ~ 2kg
  • Precision scanning: 0.5, 5 mm
  • Scanning speed: 3-4. Min approxbg3
  • Steps per rotation: 1600, 160

Electronics:

  • Logitech C270 HD 1280 x 960 – Two Laser
  • Power Supply: 12V 1.5A micro USB Cable
  • Controller board: ZUM BT-328 Power Plate

Mechanics:

  • Bipolar stepper motor Nema (1.7A 1.8 deg/step)
  • Non-slip surface
  • Threaded Rods

Software:

  • Free Horus Software
  • Output files: ply, stl
  • Compatible with Linux: ubuntu, fedora Windows: 7 and 8

As the 3D scanning space heats up, it appears that the market will break down into three segments: portable/hand held, desktop, and high end. It will be interesting to see if the end results of each process eventually converge on one another as scan qualities improve rapid. Let’s hear your thoughts on bq’s latest scanner in the Ciclop forum thread on 3DPB.com.

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