Gonna need a bigger desk!


Went to the opening of the new Design Museum in London yesterday, saw this and thought of you lot. Having only ever seen desktop printers, this was quite a surprise.
They could have printed something bigger though.


Yes but it would take days to print anything approaching the build volume and be expensive on filament. FFF doesn’t scale up very well.


Sorry, FFF?


Fused Filament Fabrication.


Ahh, Thank you. I’ve no knowledge of 3D printing at all.


A guy I know is building a Bigger Machine (he wants to fab a canoe). Things scale OK if you just use a bigger nozzle :slight_smile:

But what doesn’t really scale is the physical design of the machine. You have to rethink your bracing, probably go to closed-loop positioning (and make sure your reference points stay solid and accurate) and also figure out how to melt and feed that much plastic quickly and reliably. (Our original plan, back when he was working out of a disused granite shed, was to use the overhead crane for rough positioning, and then steppers with optical feedback for fine…)


This is pretty big scale…


Can’t imagine how much one of those things weighs! :slight_smile:


This is just ballpark, but a lot.
Very cool though.
You do have to wonder about the integrity of the structure though.


I don’t know if anyone pokes rebar into those things later. But there are some chopped-fiber reinforced concretes that are really amazingly strong. I wonder how much of an overhang you can get – with plastic filament you can do 60-degree overhangs easy, and long bridges. But somehow I figure not so much with concrete…

(They’ve also got the “metal filament” 3D printers that are basically a moveable MIG welding head. I know the strength is way lower than real metal, but I want one nonetheless.)


I saw one at the Orlando Maker Faire… is built inside a shipping container!



Of course there is this beast from SeeMeCNC which prints enormous objects. It prints so fast they do not use filament, but rather PLA pellets from 2 screw extruders. Deposits a mind blowing about of plastic per minute. This was at Maker Faire NYC (they’d already carried out the rocket by this point for something, so wasn’t in the pic)


And this giant printer for ORNL (Oak Ridge National Laboratory) by Gorilla can lay down 16kg/hr of PLA, and actually does use filament! And actually not as crazy expensive as you’d think.