We took a look at what we first thought was another hobby 3D printer, but in fact, MAKEiT’s device is designed for engineering use.
As you can see in the image above, the MAKEiT PRO 3D printer appears to be a hobby machine. It has no enclosure, fancy panels and even is clearly made from 3D printed parts. Surely this is just another of the dozens of nondescript 3D printers?
Not so. When we looked closer, we saw a number of amazing features that make this machine stand out.
First, there’s the detail and accuracy available. This image shows a very tiny frog printed on the MAKEiT PRO, placed on our business card. They say it can print 0.05mm layers. Impressive!
The machine is more than sufficiently adequate to print small mechanical components, such as these bolts - apologies for not including a size reference in the image, but believe us, they are pretty small.
The quality of the prints is high. We compared a part printed on the MAKEiT PRO with one from a much more expensive industrial machine and found them to be quite comparable in quality.
The machine’s software can generate explicit pauses during prints so that you can insert other items in mid-print, like electronics, bolts and nuts, etc.
The main feature is this dual extruder. While many machines can print multiple materials with two extruders - as can the MAKEiT Pro, this machine has the nozzles placed far apart so that they can print multiple copies simultaneously!
If your objects are less than 50mm wide (which you can sometimes achieve by rotating them appropriately on the print bed), you can print two at once as shown here. This can literally double your print speed.
If you have a number of smaller parts to produce, you can print arrays of them like this, all at more-or-less double print speed due to the dual extruder. The multiple copy feature is “automatic” and baked into their software.
Need more? The MAKEiT PRO has a simple and extensible racking system that would enable you to create a large array of machines that could print dozens of items simultaneously.
Of course, the dual extruder can also be used to print different colors or materials. Here we see a sample of some of the materials that this machine can print.
As you can imagine, we were quite impressed with this machine. It’s retail price is USD$2,899, which may sound a bit high for a hobby machine - but that’s OK, because this is not a hobby machine. It’s designed for engineers and those seeking a cheaper alternative for industrial 3D printers.
Buying this elusive machine could be a challenge, however. The company does not yet have a web store open, but hopes to do so soon. In the meantime they have made arrangements with California-based Matterhackers to resell their equipment, but we understand they may also be looking for others to resell the machine.