3D Printing

Portable iBox Nano cuts size and cost of 3D resin printing

The arguably cheap iBox Nano prints small but argues that most users only want to print small items anyway
The arguably cheap iBox Nano prints small but argues that most users only want to print small items anyway
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The iBox Nano prints small (here, a chess rook) but argues that most users only want to print small items anyway
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The iBox Nano prints small (here, a chess rook) but argues that most users only want to print small items anyway
A sample of resin pieces printed on the iBox Nano resin-based 3D printer
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A sample of resin pieces printed on the iBox Nano resin-based 3D printer
A diagram of the iBox Nano resin-based printer
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A diagram of the iBox Nano resin-based printer
iBox says that prints from the Nano are precise, even if small
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iBox says that prints from the Nano are precise, even if small
An iBox Nano prints a chess piece with its small but quiet resin printing system
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An iBox Nano prints a chess piece with its small but quiet resin printing system
iBox says the XY resolution of the Nano is comparable to other more expensive machines, 328 microns
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iBox says the XY resolution of the Nano is comparable to other more expensive machines, 328 microns
The iBox Nano claims to be the smallest and cheapest 3D printer using stereolithography techniques
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The iBox Nano claims to be the smallest and cheapest 3D printer using stereolithography techniques
The arguably cheap iBox Nano prints small but argues that most users only want to print small items anyway
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The arguably cheap iBox Nano prints small but argues that most users only want to print small items anyway
The iBox Nano uses resin and UV light to build prints that wouldn't be possible on a 3D deposition printer
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The iBox Nano uses resin and UV light to build prints that wouldn't be possible on a 3D deposition printer

Bigger is better is generally the mantra when it comes to consumer 3D printers. This is despite the majority of users likely to be only printing smaller objects anyway. Targeting such users, iBox is introducing the smaller-scaled iBox Nano, a portable resin-based 3D printer designed specifically to print cheaply, easily, and quietly at a price far below larger UV-based resin machines, while still maintaining a good print quality.

UV-based resin printing offers a couple of advantages over the more well-known deposition printing, including the potential for better resolution and the ability to easily print structures like overhangs. Most budget machines available for purchase are under a thousand US dollars, but iBox argues that they try to do everything for everyone in a mediocre fashion, rather than solve one problem just right.

The light and compact Nano has print dimensions of only 40 x 20 x 90 mm (1.57 x 0.79 x 3.54 in), but an X-Y resolution of 328 microns and a Z resolution (the height of each layer) of 0.39 microns. For context, the Form 1 resin printer offers 300 micron resolution (and other features) at a price of US$3,299.

The Nano has a few innovations up its sleeve to increase its appeal, including using UV-LEDs rather than projector bulbs or lasers, which not only consume more power but require cooling fans. Thus, the Nano is a quieter machine to operate and the LEDs don't need to be replaced as often as bulbs.

A sample of resin pieces printed on the iBox Nano resin-based 3D printer
A sample of resin pieces printed on the iBox Nano resin-based 3D printer

It’s also Wi-Fi-enabled rather than relying on lots of cords (although an Ethernet port is onboard if preferred), and doesn't require installing software, instead relying on a browser-based interface. Hence, printing can be initiated via a smartphone. The whole machine weighs only 1.1 kg (2.4 lb), fits in the hand, and can run off mains power via the included wall outlet, off a computer via USB, or be taken on the go with optional 10 or 20 hour battery packs available.

The Nano is slated to cost $299 when it hits Amazon, but is cheaper as an early bird pledge reward during its Kickstarter campaign designed to bring the product to market. At this time, the lowest priced early bird pledges have been claimed, leaving $229 as the lowest pledge level to include a printer. Dependent upon the company successfully completing development on the Nano, iBox anticipates that it will be able to start shipping by early 2015.

The team's pitch video below shows the iBox in action.

Source: iBox

1 comment
exodous
Well, this is proof that soon companies like GW that make wargame miniatures are boned.