A Wrench In the GeckoTek Gears – ABS Build Plate Issues Delay Shipping of Kickstarter Fave

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g1GeckoTek say they’re working hard to address some issues with their line of 3D printer build plates, and though they haven’t found an easy solution to the problem, they’re committed to taking “some steps back” to redefine their test procedure and formula to meet the ABS performance standards they promised to their Kickstarter backers.

And they’re putting their money where their mouths are when it comes to making sure backers are happy.

The company says that if you purchased a GeckoTek Build Base or Magnetic Base from their website for use with an ABS printer – and you’re not willing to wait for them to iron out the bugs – they are willing to issue a refund.

Over the summer, we reported on GeckoTek’s 3D Printer build plate which is designed to solve adhesion problems with 3D printer beds. GeckoTek launched a Kickstarter campaign back then to fund the project, and it far exceeded expectations as it pulled in $59,115- well above the $15,000 goal.  The build plates retail for between $39 and $54.

GeckoTek-1The build plate was meant to make it easier to get parts to stick to printer beds so that users could do away with solutions like masking tape, glue or disposable printer bed mats. But it looks like the project might be a touch tougher than they had expected. The company says that initial testing with ABS materials led to the discovery of the fact that build plate “performance degrades much faster than initially thought,” and that while room temperature performance of the build plates with PLA has exceeded goals, the ABS issues are giving them some problems.

According to GeckoTek:

“We hope that you will stick with us while we continue to work on developing our ABS Build Plate. We very much appreciate your faith in us. We will continue to post updates on the development process. We appreciate your support and you can be sure that we are working on it!

Since we shifted from our prototype phase to working towards a reliable and scalable manufacturing process, we have tested our build plates to guide us through each iteration. We tried to streamline this process to increase the development speed. We reached a point where we felt we had satisfied all the performance goals.

With our process set, we began more in depth and longer term testing with our plates. As a result, several important issues have come to our attention. Obviously, we need to be completely transparent with our backers concerning these issues and share the testing information with you.”

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They say they remain committed to creating a GeckoTek Build Plate that delivers on the promise of a permanent, warp free printing solution with ABS and more, and add that funding from an angel investor and adviser will provide them support through the process of research and development. They also say they’re hoping the problem will be solved by the summer of 2015.

GeckoTek estimates that they will begin shipping products to customers who intend to use the plates for PLA only as soon as their initial Kickstarter obligations are fulfilled.

What do you think about the problems that GeckoTek is having getting their ABS build plates to work? Let us know in the GeckoTek forum thread on 3DPB.com

 

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