The quality of a 3D print is often measured by the layer size. That represents the size of the incremental layers put down by the extruder (or other mechanism) of the 3D printer. The smaller the layer, the finer and smoother the surface finish becomes.
The first personal 3D printers that emerged several years ago typical offered 0.5-0.4mm layers, as their mechanical ability was limited compared to today's machines. Were layers smaller then, the machines would have taken forever to slowly trace each layer's pattern.
Current personal 3D printers offer 0.25-0.20mm layers and more advanced machines can even hit 0.125-0.10mm layers. But now Leapfrog has made this announcement:
After performing several tests, we can announce that the Creatr is now able to print with a minimal layer thickness of 0.05 mm. We will be providing print settings within the next month; these will be updated in Repetier Host Leapfrog automatically.
That's it - the Creatr has effectively doubled the number of layers that most of their competitors can achieve, resulting in a fantastically smooth finish on printed objects.
One question we're wondering about is, can printer owners survive the lengthy print times of micro-layered objects? If you halve the layer size, you double the number of layers and thus double the print time. Four hours becomes eight hours, and so on. We're hoping manufacturers double the extrusion speed whenever they halve the layer size.