Sometimes I find 3D printing technology to be somewhat lacking. This seems to be common complaint among other designers, but usually we content ourselves to work within the constraints of the current crop of FDM printers. There were a number of machines at Inside 3D Printing Conference & Expo Seoul that tried to address various issues like printer speed and accuracy.
Dongyub Lee, President of Anatz, took a decidedly different approach from other designers. You see, Lee is a 3D designer first and a printer developer second. The Anatz Platform 3D Printer System, as he calls it, was developed out of necessity. Lee needed a way to print his designs affordably, quickly and with precision, without breaking the bank.
The Anatz printer is a modular system that starts with a base unit, the Anatz Engine, with a build area of 100 x 100 x 120 mm. That’s a fairly small build area, but it also claims to print down to a staggering 20 micron resolution at 500 mm/sec.
It is rated to print in PLA, ABS, PVA, HIPS, and woodfill. I can’t vouch for the layer size, but I saw the machine in action and it is very fast and precise. The base unit features USB connectivity and is fairly bare bones, without an LCD panel.
It was priced at ₩1,290,000 or roughly $1,130 USD.
Maintenance and operation is simplified with its aluminum extrusion frame and clear acrylic parts. For example, loading filament into the extruder is no longer a chore, since you can see the filament thread into it due to the clear acrylic housing, something that I’d like to see other 3D printer companies adopt.
Lee even went so far as to design his own hobbed gear and bearings. Clearly, this is a man obsessed with the details.
Where things get really interesting with the printer system is when you add functionality and expandability to it. Add-ons include an LCD panel and SD card support and an outer shell that houses the LCD.
The printer can be upgraded to a “Tall” configuration of 100 x 100 x 360 mm or a “Wide” configuration of 400 x 200 x 120 mm. There is even a maxed out “Big” of 400 x 200 x 230 mm.
There’s also a 3D printer farm option that holds up to 16 printers. Lee says this is to print many small items at once and is essentially 16 times as fast as a large bed printer working at the same task. Of course the printers in the printer farm are modular and can be upgraded, too.
Anatz also sells their own line of filament.
This seems to be a very well engineered system by a meticulous designer. I think this is a company to watch.
Check out more photos of their machine and some of its example prints below. Join the discussion at the Inside 3D Printing Conference forum thread over at 3DPB.com.