We see a lot of 3D printers come to crowdfunding sites — some of them good, many of them not so much. Rarely, though, does one come around that makes me think “That could be a really great machine.” The BigBox could be a really great machine!
The BigBox is a collaboration between the E3D team and Kickstarter alumni LittleBox. The E3D V6 is the heart of the BigBox and is considered one of, if not the best, hot ends on the market. The E3D team has been working hard over the past few years to not only bring a great product to market, but also to provide the research of how to make great hot ends. This reputation and commitment to quality is what helped them meet their Kickstarter goal of £30,000 (~$47,000) in less than four hours.
With a build volume of 300mm×200mm×280mm, the BigBox lives up to its name. This fully open source machine (CC BY SA 4.0) will also feature auto-leveling, optional dual extruders capable of temperatures up to 300ºC, an optional heated bed, and an onboard control panel. This is a very complete package that will allow owners to work in a large multitude of materials with ease.
Since making their funding goal, the team has released and surpassed a few stretch goals. Now, backers will also receive a fun pack of filament including an exotic filament from Proto-Pasta and their choice of secondary nozzle for their extruder (allowing for thicker or finer extrusion widths, or just to have a backup). The team has one more stretch goal left that will upgrade the auto-leveling sensor and the extruder’s temperature sensors.
There are always risks when backing crowdfunding campaigns. Logistic hurdles can be underestimated, personal issues can get in the way of completing fulfillment, and sometimes the teams behind projects just don’t know what they are doing. The collaboration of E3D, a company that has worked hard to create a great reputation, along with Littlebox, which has already successfully worked through the crowdfunding process, helps mitigate these worries for the BigBox.