Flashforge has a reputation for producing solid personal 3D printers. But now they appear to be developing a children’s 3D printer.
The “Finder” is a mini-style machine that is designed to be easy to use. As you might expect, this machine has some limitations and in particular can print only PLA plastic, since it does not have a heated print surface and is largely “open” to the air.
We suspect a design compromise occurred here: a “closed to view” machine would print more reliably and perhaps even permit printing of materials other than PLA. However, an “open to view” machine would be better for children, who will no doubt be thrilled to observe their creation being printed before their eyes.
The machine we viewed is in fact only a prototype. Flash forge suggests they may offer it for sale to the public in March at a price of around USD$500. Until they, they will continue tuning the machine and its software to ensure a smooth experience for kids.