Mankati is a company based in Shanghai, China that manufactures FDM 3D printers. They started in 2012 and now have a five machine line up that includes the smaller JetBuilder R1 WD, JetBuilderR1 EP and Craftsman Pro along with the larger sized JetBuilderX1 and the newest Fullscale XT. The company is yet another 3D printer producer coming from China, a market that presents incredible potential for 3D printing technologies but is mostly unknown to westerners.
Just last May 16th 3DPI signed a partnership with 3DTupo to bring our 3D printing news to Chinese Audiences. While that will help the Chinese find out about everything that goes on in most of the Western world, it will not do much to tell us what goes on on the other side of the Great (language) Wall.
So, before getting into the specifics of the Mankati 3D printers, I wanted to get an idea of what the Chinese 3D printing market is all about. A good starting point was Shane’s recent article, where he outlines recent developments on the industrial side of things. Then I tried an experiment: I inserted the terms 3D printing on Google Traslator and got: 3D打印.
I then inserted “3D打印” in Google and got a glimpse into a strange, parallel universe, where there were tons of 3D printing news (just like in our universe) only they were not the same ones. Unsurprising conclusion: the Chinese 3D printing industry is alive and well, just like everywhere else.
And the Mankati team seems to have a bright future ahead as well. The company says they have been building their business in Europe, Australia and Asia. Now they are going for the American market and have been working on improving their machines’ design.
Their newest model, the Fullscale XT, has a build volume of 250x250x300 and dual extruders. It can get to a 0.01 mm resolution on the X and Y axes, with 0.15 on the Z axis; layer resolution is 0.02-0.04 mm. It’s fast, clocking in at 250 mm/sec, thanks to its patented print head system, and its solid, with a steel body to ensure durability. It also integrates a number of proprietary technologies that – according to the company – assure better stability than open source components.
Other than MakerBot, there are not many FDM 3D printer manufacturers that have already launched 5 different models on the market. Mankati has done it and, differently from yet unconfirmed reports that the Chinese are 3D printing 10 houses a day, its projects seem quite concrete.