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New 3D Printer Can Print With Carbon Fiber 141

Posted by Soulskill
from the harder-better-faster-stronger dept.
cold fjord sends this news from Popular Mechanics: "[M]aking custom racecar parts out of carbon fiber is daunting. The only real method available is CNC machining, an expensive and difficult process that requires laying pieces by hand. To improve the process, [Gregory Mark] looked to 3D printing. But nothing on the market could print the material, and no available materials could print pieces strong enough for his purposes. So Mark devised his own solution: the MarkForged Mark One, the world's first carbon fiber 3D printer. Mark debuted his Boston area-based startup MarkForged at SolidWorks World 2014 in San Diego with a working prototype. The Mark One can print in carbon fiber, fiberglass, nylon and PLA (a thermoplastic). ... The main advantage of the Mark One: It can print parts 20 times stiffer and five times stronger than ABS, according to the company. It even has a higher strength-to-weight ratio than CNC-machined aluminum. ... Mark says that he imagines this machine is for anybody who wants to print in a material as strong as aluminum. Beyond racecars, it could be useful to industries like prosthetics."
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New 3D Printer Can Print With Carbon Fiber

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  • Beats colour.... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by webmistressrachel (903577) on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @09:03PM (#46096341) Journal

    This is the first materials advance I've seen in ages, bar superficial things like the ability to make ridiculously expensive full-colour prototypes of things that need moulding to make en masse.

  • Re:Uggh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Algae_94 (2017070) on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @09:08PM (#46096383) Journal
    There must be another CNC than the one I'm familiar with: "CNC machining, an expensive and difficult process that requires laying pieces by hand"
  • Re:i don't get it (Score:3, Insightful)

    by dAzED1 (33635) <brianlamere@[ ]oo.com ['yah' in gap]> on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @09:19PM (#46096451) Homepage Journal
    First result from me when I google "useful things with a 3d printer" is an article which includes a garlic press, cherry pit remover, and door hook. All these things require more strength than what consumer-level 3d printers can actually muster. Getting more strength in the process is indeed an issue, so...permit me to disagree that there isn't someplace worthwhile between ABS and true carbon-fiber...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @09:21PM (#46096463)

    Oh now come ON, how the fuck does anyone with even a passing knowledge of CF production get the summary so fuckign incredibly wrong? CNC would be to create the MOLD. You dont bloody well layer CF by a goddamn CNC and most of the CF for racecars is layered over the mold by hand.

    Now the idea of 3D printing CF isnt a bad idea - the secret to CF strength is getting the strands in the right direction and the resins used / curing time. I can see how this could work and it is somethign to check out. But holy fuck editors, get the goddamn summary right!

  • by dbraden (214956) on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @10:53PM (#46096913)

    Vapor-hardware is a thing. And you're lookin' at it.

    Except, they are already demo'ing a working prototype at a decent size trade show. That's some pretty thick vapor. I know demos != shipped, but I'm going to give this one the benefit of the doubt since it's very similar to well-understood and already available hardware.

  • Total gamechanger (Score:2, Insightful)

    by OhANameWhatName (2688401) on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @11:27PM (#46097063)
    Carbon fibre 3d printer + printable firearms = victory

    Pre-packaged unprinted mai order firearms, plug into the point and push the big green with the label "Begin Revolution".
  • Re:i don't get it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by oscrivellodds (1124383) on Tuesday January 28, 2014 @11:34PM (#46097095)

    It may not have the strength of CF done properly, but it will be much stronger than the alternatives like ABS and PLA. There are plenty of applications where that "between" strength is useful. The claim is that it is stiffer and stronger than 6061 aluminum. That means you don't have to go into a machine shop to cut a bunch of 6061 aluminum- you can print a part and get similar characteristics. The 3D printer doesn't care how complex the design is- it will produce it at much lower cost than a machine shop full of mills and guys who know how to run them.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 29, 2014 @01:36AM (#46097547)

    Carbon fibre 3d printer + printable firearms = victory
      Pre-packaged unprinted mai order firearms, plug into the point and push the big green with the label "Begin Revolution".

    Yeah, because if there is one thing that is holding back the revolution in the US, its a lack of guns.

  • Re: i don't get it (Score:4, Insightful)

    by O('_')O_Bush (1162487) on Wednesday January 29, 2014 @09:31AM (#46099097)
    If it is as strong as aluminum, it may be suitable for 3D printing AR-15 lowers. You think the moral panic around 3D printing crappy guns that only work a few times is bad, imagine the news field day when we can print the registered part of an AR and have it be just as durable or more so than existing polymer lowers.
  • by sjbe (173966) on Wednesday January 29, 2014 @09:57AM (#46099311)

    bar superficial things like the ability to make ridiculously expensive full-colour prototypes of things that need moulding to make en masse.

    Superficial? Hardly. Tooling is incredibly expensive for molded plastic products and 3D printers make producing small quantities of plastic parts MUCH cheaper in many cases. If you think this is unimportant or trivial then you are wrong. This is a Very Big Deal.

Never tell people how to do things. Tell them WHAT to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity. -- Gen. George S. Patton, Jr.

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