Established in Nibionno, a tiny town right outside Milan in Northern Italy, by five young entrepreneurs, Sharebot is the main Italian manufacturer of personal home FFF based 3D printers. The company has been in the news al lot lately, with commercial initiatives such as the Kiwi 3D program and the recent announcement of the first sub €20,000 SLS system.
Apparently there is a lot more news to come, according to Arturo Donghi and Matteo Abbiati, two of the companies co-founders, who have told 3Discover.it and 3DPI that they have a lot of aces up their sleeve — to be presented at the 2014 London 3D Printshow next week.
The latest news we’ve found out about is the XXL — an FFF 3D printer that, as far as I know (and I have done some research on it just to be sure), has the largest horizontal printing area in its class. This means that, while the Stratasys’s gigantic Fortus 900mc actually goes bigger (but only by 11 cm in length), it is in a different class in terms of pricing and industrial use. This however can give an idea of the XXL’s capabilities in exploring a horizontal dimension that has been somewhat left behind.
That’s because the XXL will have an impressive 36,000 cc print volume, with a print area as large as 800 mm x 20 mm (31,5” x 8”), with a 200 mm extension on the Z axis. This makes it ideal for a wide variety of jobs, ranging from architectural models, which often tend to develop in width rather than in height, to long engineering components.
One sector that has not yet been explored by 3D printing (probably due to the cost effectiveness issue) is that of commercial billboards and physical logos: the XXL might actually open up new possibilities on this front, also minimizing the need for supports and thus reducing material consumption.
Built initially as an explorative project, the XXL prototype was presented by Sharebot at trade manufacturing and 3D printing trade fairs in early 2014, obtaining significant success in terms of interest and visibility. So much so that Sharebot decided to produce a final, commercial version. The XXL is open and compatible with all the most commonly used filament, although it has been optimized for PLA. Visitors at London’s 3D Printshow will be able to view it first hand, every one else will not have to wait long as the system is expected to go on sale in the last quarter of 2014.