An inexpensive personal 3D printer from Weistek, the IdeaWerk, could be the printer for you.
Weistek, a Shenzhen, China-based company (near Hong Kong) manufactures the IdeaWerk 3D printer. This is a very straightforward device offering a simple, yet reliable solution to your 3D printing requirements.
The machine is open to the air and without a heated bed, thus it can print only PLA plastic - ABS and many other plastics would warp unless heated. However, as a PLA machine it has some good characteristics:
- Compact size (298 x 221 x 403mm in external dimensions)
- Said to be suitable for very long prints, more than 120 hours, although the build volume (150 x 150 x 140mm) will ultimately limit that
- Layer size of 0.18 to 0.30mm
- Single extruder
- Supports both X3G and GCODE (via their own DoraWare or Replicator G)
- Sturdy steel chassis
- USB connectivity for remote operations
- SD Card slot for unattended operations
- 750g PLA filament included in purchase
- Available in White, Orange, Silver, Grey and Black chassis colors
We particularly liked the IdeaWerk’s front panel, a color touch screen, as you can see in this horribly blurry image we captured - our profuse apologizes offered to squinting readers.
Two things to comment on: first, there is no WiFi connection, but we understand they’re working on that. Secondly, the mechanical movements during extrusion actually move the platform for the Y-axis. In general, we are a bit nervous about machines that move the print around during printing, because the weight of the print could, if sufficiently heavy, cause inaccuracies in axis movement.
The IdeaWerk is available now for a cost of USD$450-550, depending on where you buy it. We understand the company is also working on two more advanced models: a “Plus” version that adds a heated bed for an additional USD$100 or so, and a “large” version that would cost several hundred USD more. However, we have no further information on those models yet.