Jul 15, 2014

Sculptify David 3d printer uses pellets for Fused Layer Extrusion

Sculptify David is new 3d printer that uses pellets for printing. The company calls this new 3d printing technology FLEX or Fused Layer Extrusion.

Sculptify David technical specifications:
  • Printing Technology: FLEX (Fused Layer Extrusion)
  • Build Volume: 20w x 22d x 18.5h cm, (7.8in x 8.6in x 7.3in), 8140 cubic centimeters, (496 cubic inches)
  • Build Surface: Aluminum
  • Hopper Volume: Continuously refillable
  • Nozzle Diameter: 0.3mm, 0.4mm, 0.5mm, all included
  • Extruder Max Temperature: 330°C, (626°F)
  • Layer Resolution: 20 microns for PLA (varies for other materials)
  • Positioning Precision: XY axis: 8 micron on better, Z axis: 3 micron or better
  • Stepper Motors: 1.8° Step angle with minimum 1/16 micro-stepping
  • Construction: Aircraft aluminum, Polycarbonate windows
  • Weight: 29 kg (64 lbs)
  • Product Dimensions: 53.8w x 50.2d x 62h cm (21.2w x 19.8w x 24.4h in)
  • Connectivity: USB
Using materials in for of pellets has many advantages with price being the main one:

3D printing with plastic pellets offers important benefits and advantages that are not available with current filament offerings:
  1. They are readily available in hundreds of new materials. This opens the door to a whole spectrum of new and interesting materials, each with their own unique properties. Some are rigid and incredibly durable, others are soft to the touch and extremely flexible. The result is the ability to print with greater flexibility.
  2. Plastic pellets are easy to use with the Sculptify 3D printer. If you can load a coffee maker, you can print with pellets in the Sculptify 3D printer. Pellets are loaded into the top, and ready to print in no time.
  3. They are the most cost effective form of plastic. Since pellets do not need to be optimized for a spool, multiple manufacturing and engineering steps can be removed. This saves a lot money, and the cost savings can be passed directly to the customer.

Currently several material options are under research at Sculpitfy:
  • ABS, Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene. Hard plastic commonly used in plastic car components and household items.
  • HDPE, High-density polyethylene. Semi-hard and durable plastic, used in milk jugs and plastic bags.
  • PLA, Polylactide. Hard plastic, biodegradable, made from renewable resources. The standard in 3D printing.
  • EVA, Ethylene vinyl acetate. Soft silicone-like material often used in shoes and sportswear.
  • Nylon. Hard and durable material that is often used in low-friction applications like bearings.
  • TPU, Thermoplastic polyurethane. 
  • Rubber-like material that is often used in shoes and mobile device cases.
  • HIPS, High impact polystyrene. Semi-hard and durable plastic used in disposable utensils and containers.
  • PC, Polycarbonate. Very hard plastic that is typically transparent. Often used in safety glasses and DVDs.
  • Wood composites. Earthy look and finish, often used in synthetic decking


Sculptify David will be on Kickstarter in August of 2014


Sculptify David has just finished successful Kickstarter campaign and raised $110,567 from $100,000 goal.


Here is David extruding from a plastic bag:

#d printing from pellets should be much cheaper and economical:

Pellet material types:

Prices of pellets:

Sculptify David tech specs as stated on Kickstarter:

Total cost of ownership chart that compares Scultpify David pallet operations to other 3d printers: