Ultimaker announced the availability of a heated bed for their 3D printer. No, not for the current model, but for their previous model.
Their current model, the Ultimaker 2, already includes a heated print surface, but €245 (USD$315) you’ll get not only a heated print bed, but also a brand new replacement Z-stage that should prove even more reliable.
The heated print surface permits more successful 3D printing of many different materials, particularly those that shrink when cooling. In other words, warping is drastically reduced.
We’re very impressed with Ultimaker on this one. There is a tendency for commercial companies to abandon their earlier models in hopes customers would purchase current equipment. While we’re certain Ultimaker DOES hope for new purchases, providing such active support to older equipment can only be viewed very positively.
Consider that most of the Ultimaker “originals” were sold as kits. Customers painstakingly assembled them and made them work well. They’ve invested significant time into these machines and abandoning them for improved equipment could be difficult for some, not just due to cost.
But is this the end of upgrades for the old Ultimaker? Apparently not. Ultimaker has committed to delivering a “second extruder” upgrade in “Q1 2015”. So, no, there’s much road left to travel if you invested in an Ultimaker original kit.