We managed to check out a 3D printer from Finland: the Mini Factory and found it has several interesting features that differentiate it from other 3D printers in its class.
Like many inexpensive 3D printers, the miniFactory uses plastic filament. A problem sometimes observed is that filaments break or bend during printing. The miniFactory significantly reduces this issue by redesigning the mechanical movements occurring during printing.
The miniFactory’s extruders remain stationary during printing. Instead, the print bed moves left-right, forward-backward and up-down. At all times the print head remains in place – and thus the filament has a consistent path to the extruder that introduces no additional stress.
Aside from the mechanics, the miniFactory includes no belts – all movements are powered by direct drive.
The single head machine has been available since late September at a cost of £1000 (USD$1600), with a dual head version coming soon. miniFactory is sold in nine countries in Europe, focusing on the education market, but expansion through partners is being pursued.