3D Printing

Novel 3D printer puts continuous printing on the table

Novel 3D printer puts continuo...
The BlackBelt 3D printer allows for really long objects to be printed in one go
The BlackBelt 3D printer allows for really long objects to be printed in one go
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The BlackBelt 3D printer is constructed using aluminum and steel
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The BlackBelt 3D printer is constructed using aluminum and steel
The BlackBelt 3D printer was designed to make 3D printing as easy as 2D printing
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The BlackBelt 3D printer was designed to make 3D printing as easy as 2D printing
The BlackBelt 3D printer is named after the carbon fiber conveyor belt that's used as its print bed
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The BlackBelt 3D printer is named after the carbon fiber conveyor belt that's used as its print bed
Fairly long objects like this model fighter jet can be printed in one go
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Fairly long objects like this model fighter jet can be printed in one go
The BlackBelt 3D printer allows for really long objects to be printed in one go
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The BlackBelt 3D printer allows for really long objects to be printed in one go
The BlackBelt's print head can be set at different angles so that complex structures can be printed without needing supports
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The BlackBelt's print head can be set at different angles so that complex structures can be printed without needing supports
The conveyor belt of the BlackBelt 3D printer can be used for series printing of objects, which can be collected in a bin at the end
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The conveyor belt of the BlackBelt 3D printer can be used for series printing of objects, which can be collected in a bin at the end
The BlackBelt 3D printer will be available as a desktop model or a freestanding unit
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The BlackBelt 3D printer will be available as a desktop model or a freestanding unit
The kind of objects that the BlackBelt 3D printer can produce
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The kind of objects that the BlackBelt 3D printer can produce
For objects longer than 1,300 mm, a roller module is recommended
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For objects longer than 1,300 mm, a roller module is recommended
The BlackBelt 3D printer can produce workshop logos in one long print session
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The BlackBelt 3D printer can produce workshop logos in one long print session
The BlackBelt 3D printer comes with three interchangeable print heads
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The BlackBelt 3D printer comes with three interchangeable print heads
Designs can be loaded into the BlackBelt 3D printer via SD card
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Designs can be loaded into the BlackBelt 3D printer via SD card
The conveyor belt of the BlackBelt 3D printer can be used for series printing of objects, which can be collected in a bin at the end
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The conveyor belt of the BlackBelt 3D printer can be used for series printing of objects, which can be collected in a bin at the end
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At the heart of many of today's 3D printers is a stationary print bed, which means that if you want to print a really, really long object like a company logo for above the office door or hollow tubing, it would likely take several print runs and some glue. The BlackBelt from Stephan Schürmann replaces the print bed of old with a conveyor belt, which allows for continuous printing.

Currently the subject of a Kickstarter funding campaign, the BlackBelt has been 3 years in development – going for CAD-modeled concept to prototype to production ready. Its carbon fiber composite conveyor belt allows for continuous printing of long objects, with the option of going really, really long by placing a roller module unit in front of the conveyor belt, or continuous batch production of smaller single build parts, which can be collected in a bin at the end.

The build area is given as 340 mm wide, 340 mm high and an infinite length, and the interchangeable print head (it comes with three – 0.4, 0.6 and 0.8 mm) can be set at 15°, 25°, 34° or 45° angles, which means creators don't need to rely on support structures for overhangs in complex prints.

The BlackBelt's print head can be set at different angles so that complex structures can be printed without needing supports
The BlackBelt's print head can be set at different angles so that complex structures can be printed without needing supports

Its maker says that the BlackBelt can be made available as either a desktop unit or a floorstanding machine, and can be customized to match buyer needs. The pre-production prototype has been tested with ABS, PLA and PETG, though Schürmann does suggest that other materials may be supported.

The expected retail price is €9,500 (about US$10,600) for the desktop model, or €12,500 for the freestanding version, but significant reductions are being offered to Kickstarter backers. Pledges for the desktop unit start at €6,500 (not including shipping costs). The project met its modest funding target within minutes of going live and, if all goes to plan, delivery is estimated to start in October. Check out the pitch video below.

Sources: BlackBelt 3D, Kickstarter

BLACKBELT 3D PRINTER

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2 comments
2 comments
MatthiasPaschke
Sorry, but performance - in terms of speed - seems to be not that good.
MQ
Nice modification of the FFD theme.
The problem with FFD is that even if fibre reinforcement is used, the layup is limited to the orientation of the working axes, giving non-homogeneous builds, with planes of weakness. For 3D fused-filament printing (in polymers) to become truly structural, some real 3D reinforcing (using some type of modified tufting technique) allowing reinforcing to connect between multiple layers, is needed.
OR take it a step further with a variable tilt (and lift) on the working axes allowing layup to be done in different planes for a variable geometry part...
Speed of build, is not really a problem, that can be improved to a certain point, with the advantage that layered manufacturing can construct geometries which are either unachievable or prohibitively expensive with conventional manufacturing methods, especially for large non (or small) production builds.