We had a chat with ComeTrue about their latest offerings.
ComeTrue is the printer brand of Taiwan-Based MicroJet Technology Co. Ltd. It’s a largish manufacturing company specializing in producing inkjet heads, which gives them a head start in developing binder jet 3D printers.
We first bumped into ComeTrue equipment a couple of years ago at CES, where we were impressed with their inexpensive full color 3D printing solution. The T10 uses a binder jetting technique to produce full color objects.
They use a thermoplastic powder as the base medium, which is then impregnated layer by layer with liquid binder — of multiple colors, just like a 2D inkjet would do. By mixing droplets from the inkjets they can achieve any desired color, enabling the printing of highly complex color textures.
The process by its very nature ends up with the completed print buried in a chamber of unbound powder. The process of extracting and cleaning the print can be quite messy and tedious, so they’ve now introduced a dedicated cleaning and depowdering station, the TD3, shown here. It’s bundled with the printers.
While the T10 full color printer is their flagship product, the company has also introduced the M10, a ceramic 3D printer. This device uses the same principles used in the T10, as their expertise in binder jetting technologies continues to be leveraged.
Once a print is completed in the M10, it must be fired to complete the object, much as you would perform in traditional ceramic work. They say the object will shrink around 16-17% after bisque firing. Glaze can then be applied and fired to create the final appearance.
They’ve positioned the M10 as an experimental ceramic printer, encouraging operators to use different forms of ceramic powders. Their software allows a number of parameter changes to accommodate a wide variety of ceramic materials, although some experimentation is likely required.
There are few full color 3D printing options today, and you can add the ComeTrue T10 to the mix. But there are even fewer dedicated ceramic 3D printing options, one of which is the M10.
We’re told the price of the M10 is only US$24K, which is a very good price for a ceramic 3D printer. Definitely worth considering if you are in the market for ceramic experimentation.