There have been a number of machines released over the past few years that encompass 3D printing with Computer Numerical Control (CNC) milling alongside other automated making processes such as pick-and-plot: The ZeGo, FABtotum and Zmorph being notable examples. These machines are designed for the desktop, essentially 3D printer designs with extra functions via exchanging extruders. Luminar Products aims to add a more heavy duty machine for creators with great ideas who don’t have access to, but have a requirement for, a number of devices.
Luinar has taken the TriBOT machine to Kickstarter, notably with a very different approach to that taken in the FLX.ARM by Flux Intergration LLC, which is also on the crowd-funding platform right now. Luminar Products states that its machine is the first to ‘Print, Mill & Mold,’ offering 3D printing, CNC milling and auto-injection molding. But the way to see this machine, I think, is that the TRiBOT is a CNC mill that also 3D prints, rather than a 3D printer which also mills.
The machine is capable of 3D printing detailed prototypes in an unusually broad range of materials – PVC, Polypropylene, Polyethylene or, Polycarbonate – whilst maintaining the strength and rigidity required for CNC or manual milling. Both the print head and the extruder can reach 400 Celsius (752 Fahrenheit). The intricacies of CNC milling and molding are extensive and the crowdfunding campaign provides a wealth of information on the features present.
The TRiBOT Machine Includes:
- The Base 130 pound base mill converted to CNC with a www.stirlingsteele.com 3 axis motion control kit
- Enhanced 11 x 5 x 11 travel area
- 3 NEMA 23 steppers
- 4 axis step and direction controller/driver & DC power supply
- 0.200 pitch Z axis ball screw
- X and Y Lead Screws
- Extruder 3D Printer head which includes a 70 oz/in NEMA 23 gear-head stepper motor, Stainless steel feed tube with 1.5 inch tall copper, heater block 100 watt heater cartridge, Thermocouple and cooling fan
- Filament injection mold head Includes a 120 oz/in NEMA 23 gear-head stepper motor Stainless steel feed tube with 4 inch tall aluminum heater block 280 watt heater cartridge Thermocouple and cooling fan
- 2 PIC digital temperature controllers boxed in an electronic enclosure
- Three dimensional printing stage plate
- Sample pack of 3mm diameter PLA printing filament
- Tooling package including: Vise, 6 piece end mill set, collet set, parallel set, 0-1/2” drill chuck, assorted wrenches, T-Nuts, mounting screws, bar clamps and step blocks
- Wheeled steel service cart with 2 shelves
- Power strip with built in circuit breaker
- Desktop computer with Linux OS, Linux CNC, MeshCAM, Slic3r, and FreeCAD 3D drawing software all pre-installed and ready to use.
- Computer monitor – key board – mouse – cables
From $4995 this versatile device is aimed at those with a dedicated interest in their making projects, professionals and those seeking a heavy duty machine to craft their creations. The project has over a month to go on Kickstarter, with half of the total already met. Do let us know what you make of this hybrid proposition.