Remember when 3D printing was just for industrial applications? For over two decades rapid prototyping focused on processes for prototyping applications in an industrial capacity, and research was geared towards advanced technology for tooling, casting and direct manufacturing processes. It wasn’t until 2007 that accessible 3D printing technology was opened up to a wider audience, and even then it would be 2 years before the first commercially available desktop 3D printer would be available. Kickstarter helped blow the market wide open with the immensely successful B9Creator and Form 1 launches in 2012, and it looks to be doing the same with WAZER.
Waterjet cutting: from industrial use to desktop
Waterjet cutting is currently in the same boat 3D printing was in pre-2012. In order to take advantage of this industrial cutting technique, you need to find a service that will do it for you, or shell out an extreme amount of money for an oversized machine. Some guys have a Kickstarter to solve this, and bring desktop fabrication to an entirely new level.
WAZER, the first desktop waterjet
It is rare that we stray from 3D printing (we are a 3D printing publication after all), but this project was too interesting to skip past. WAZER is the first waterjet cutter that isn’t oversized, and can fit into every workshop. Set it up next to your 3D printer, and you have entirely new options for your projects and prototypes! WAZER can cut through any material, whether it’s steel, aluminum, glass and even titanium. The Kickstarter has already raised 798% of its original goal with 57 days still to go, which is very exciting and a little ridiculous.
With traditional waterjets costing upwards of $100,000, and this Kickstarter setting the retail price at $5,999, it’s no wonder it has been so successful. It works by combining abrasive particles with high pressured water stream, cutting through the material and removing it through a micro-erosion process. This means it won’t cause heat induced warping, it doesn’t need ventilation and the final product has a smooth finish.
It’s all done digitally, so it can make precise cuts that can’t otherwise be made, and also doesn’t cause heat induced warping. It is versatile in regards to software, and works with drawing programs like Adobe Illustrator, Solidworks and Google SketchUp. All you need is the drawing file (DXF or SVG) to upload into WAZER software, and the step by step guide will help you with the rest.
If you want to secure your own WAZER, head over to the Kickstarter page to be one of the last batch 2 releases with the price dropped to $4,499.
About the team behind WAZER
Dan, Nisan, Matt and Christian are a team of mechanical, electrical and manufacturing engineers who met at Penn Engineering. They are currently based in New York, but spent eight months in Shenzhen, China working out of HAX Accelerator’s office developing WAZER.