Today Formlabs brought a 7-year project to the light, delivering the world’s first benchtop industrial selective laser sintering (SLS) 3D printer to the public. This device is called Formlabs Fuse 1, and it’ll be launched alongside a post-processing system called Formlabs Fuse Sift, and the Fuse 1’s first powder material: Formlabs Nylon 12 Powder. With this setup, Formlabs says they are delivering on their “promise to bring this powerful technology to market at an affordable price point without compromising quality.
The Formlabs Fuse 1 works with a modular build chamber that allows “continuous printing and reduces downtime.” To avoid broken parts as it prints, this new printer works with a patent pending Surface Armor technology – that delivers a semi-sintered shell “to protect the surface of the part as it prints.”
Of the many interesting and futuristic features of this 3D printer in which you’ll find interesting, it is the ability to work with “recycled powder” that you might find most fantastic. This device is able to work with “up to 70 percent recycled powder” in its prints. Imagine the amount of waste you have right now with 3D prints, and cut that down by a BUNCH.
With SLS 3D printing, the printer fuses nylon powder layer by layer, creating a structure in which the unused powder both supports the parts during printing and can be pulled away and potentially re-used in the future. With this system, exceedingly complicated, complex parts can be fabricated without wasteful support structures. That’s the dream!
Above you’ll see the launch video for Formlabs Fuse 1. In this video, the abilities of this printer can be seen, top to bottom. Easy 3D fabrication in full effect, for the small business, right this minute.
Formlabs Fuse 1 is made to make this technology affordable – but it’s still not made for your everyday average hobby user. Formlabs Fuse 1 will be available for sale starting this week for $18,499 USD. It’s in a sort of sweet spot that’s powerful enough to handle big jobs but affordable enough to be employed by less-than-the-biggest brands in the world.