There’s a reason for the name “ZMorph” on this unusual and transformative personal 3D printer.
Indeed, the colorful printer can “morph” into different types of printers – and even a mill. They say it is “able to work with additive, subtractive and formative fabrication techniques”, and they’re not kidding. It can print in plastic, ceramics and even food.
How does the ZMorph accomplish these amazing feats? By offering a quickly interchangeable toolhead. Pop off the 3D printing plastic extruder and replace it with the Dremel mount and you’ve suddenly created a CNC mill, for example. They offer a paste extruder, which is capable of extruding any squishy material such as clay or even many foods, such as properly tempered chocolate, peanut butter or minced meats. A word of caution, though, as we’re not certain whether the ZMorph’s material path is foodsafe.
Currently ZMorph offers this startling selection of toolheads:
- Dual head extruder (extruders capable of printing ABS, PLA and Nylon)
- Plastic extruder 1.75mm
- Plastic extruder 3.00mm
- Ceramics extruder
- Cake and chocolate extruder
- Dremel mount (for basic 3D milling)
- Touch probe (for 3D scanning and part calibration)
If that isn’t enough, they’re also working on these for release sometime in 2014:
- Laser toolhead (2W, for low power laser cutting and engraving)
- 5-Axis universal toolhead (for complex CNC milling and other processes)
The machine specifications obviously vary by toolhead, but for 3D printing the machine presents a generous build volume of 250 x 235 x 165mm, with a heated glass build surface. Even better, the build volume is enclosed, meaning the environment has predictable heating from the build plate to drastically reduce warping. All this for only USD$1,944.
Is this the machine for you? It’s hard to say no, since it can literally morph into the machine you need with the simple application of a different toolhead. You might have to pay a couple hundred USD$ for an extra toolhead, but that’s a small price compared to purchasing a dedicated function machine instead.