By far the most popular Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) 3D printers on the market are those which utilize a Cartesian-based platform. This is likely a result of two main factors. First off, the printers are easily expandable in all directions if the manufacturer desires to do so. Secondly, the Cartesian model is easy to understand compared to other methods of FFF printing.
Delta-based FFF 3D printers, the second most common form of these machines, are a bit more difficult for the everyday tinkerer to understand and manipulate in general. Additionally it is very hard to create a Delta machine which can print a larger depth or width without having to expand upon its height.
This didn’t stop one man named Matt Wahlers from moving forward on his plans to create an expandable, open source Delta 3D Printer, called the Thingystock. If the name sounds familiar that’s because Wahlers launched a printer called the Thingybot 3D back on Kickstarter last August but failed to reach his goal. The Thingystock is based on the Thingybot 3D, and takes inspiration from the RepRap movement, particularly the Rostock machine, meaning the 3D printer is 3D printable itself, or at least the majority of its parts are.
“The Thingystock 3D Printer was first designed as a personal printer: one with as many 3D Printed parts as possible and that is fully expandable in the future,” explained Wahlers. “To do this, I decided to base it off of the amazing Rostock idea by Johann. The printer went together flawlessly and worked perfectly, so I decided to do a small scale launch of it, the perfect medium for which was Kickstarter!”
Wahlers is looking to raise a small sum (in relation to other Kickstarter goals we have seen) of $5,000 by February 20 to get this project off the ground. If he doesn’t reach his goal, he has promised to make the design files available for free to the open source community anyway.
The printer being offered as part of Kickstarter’s rewards can be purchased in kit form, unassembled or partially assembled, for prices of $450 and $550 respectively. The base model will have a 150 x 150 x 200 mm circular build envelope, but best of all it’s fully expandable to your heart’s desire. The rods which the extruder moves on can be replaced with taller ones, the arms replaced with longer ones, and all other necessary parts may be 3D printed to fit your needs.
The machine features an E3D V6 hot end and runs on a RAMPS 1.4 system via an LCD interface. All this allows for the Thingystock to print at 150 micron precision, which also is fully upgradeable via the replacement of the belt pulleys.
Whether it’s a success on Kickstarter or not, the design of the Thingystock seems like a winner, one which could be used to inspire other innovations within the Delta-style RepRap space. Let us know if you have backed this project, and your thoughts on its design in the Thingystock Forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out the video clip of the printer in action below: