Knowing that you can scan or create something and then just send it straight to your new 3D printer at any time of day or night without waiting on anyone else or seeking anyone else’s approval is not only rewarding, but freeing. That you can start your own personal industrial revolution in the home or workshop opens a stunning new world, whether you are an engineer, designer, tinkerer, or a complete novice.
Just the fact that you can produce a tangible item from your own concept is exciting enough, but cooking with color and quality at the desktop? That’s the cherry on top. Or should we say the Tomato?
However you choose to pronounce it, with the Tomato 3D printer, you gain several features putting you ahead right out of the gate: color, high resolution, and no mess—not to mention user friendliness, which we all enjoy, no matter our level of technical prowess. Created by Nixtek, out of LA, the team has just launched a Kickstarter campaign in hopes to raise $100K by July 10.
“Many of the 3D printers have improved focus on performance and size, but none have been able to achieve high-resolution, full color 3D printing,” states the team on Kickstarter. “It’s time we changed that.”
Not only can you 3D print with color, you can mix colors, swirl them together, and get as funky and creative as you like.
Color filaments can be injected and mixed at your whim, as the Tomato features a hot-end extruder with its own mixing chamber. Able to mix up to four colors, you have an artist’s palette at your disposal—and a very high-tech one at that—with an LCD screen, jog wheel, and SD card functionality.
“Previously, to print a multi-color product, the user had to pause the extrusion process, switch out the filament, recalibrate, and start all over again,” says Gordon Fok, business development director. “This machine was built around the user, for the user.”
And the Tomato is not just a one-feature wonder, as you also receive ultra-fine resolution, with the promise of reliable and predictable 3D printing in 50 microns. Another attractive promise attached to the Tomato is that of no muss. Ceramic glass on an evenly heated print bed, made of aluminum, means no more rigging up adhesives or dealing with silicone films.
The Tomato’s anodized aluminum frame not only offers great aesthetics, but also stability, reducing issues from vibration. Featuring a build volume of 225 x 225 x 200 mm, the Tomato uses 1.75 mm filament, and operates at temps from 15-32° C.
While these 3D printers are already getting up snapped quickly, early birds can still hope to get in the Tomato Desktop Full Color 3D Printer with four rolls of filament and a filament rack, which can hold all four rolls of 1kg filament. At $6,000, in the friend-to-friend deal, you and a group will receive three Tomatos, 12 rolls of filament, and three racks. Shipping is not included, and orders are expected to be fulfilled by November of this year.
Is this a Kickstarter campaign you are thinking about supporting? Have you been looking for a color 3D printer? Tell us your thoughts in the Tomato Color 3D Printer forum thread over at 3DPB.com.