4-Headed Printer Makes Multiple Parts Simultaneously

3D Printing & Imaging


3D printers are great for prototyping or for when you need one or two copies of a part, but the time it takes to print each one of those parts makes scaling difficult. But what if you could print two, three, or four parts in the same amount of time it took to print one?

Stacker, a new modular printer, aims tackle that by bringing a flexible and configurable design to users. It is one of the more unique printers we have seen come to Kickstarter, with numerous innovations included in the machine.

The biggest of those comes with their selectable and positionable extruders. A large single print can be completed on the Stacker’s 250mm (10″) x 450mm (18″) build plate, or up to 4 additional extruders can be adjusted into position to print 4 smaller parts simultaneously.

Extension modules can be stacked under the print area, allowing the user to extend the z axis to 600mm (nearly 2 feet). Stacker also included quick change hot ends that are tuned to specific temperature and material profiles.

This is not the first time we have seen multi-part simultaneous printing. Hacks to early dual extruder printers like the Dual Replicator 1, allowed multiple small parts to be printed at the same time. Stacker’s innovation comes from being a machine that is purposely built for this application. While it may be overkill for most people’s “my first 3D printer”, those who are looking to actual small run production work with a 3D printer might find Stacker to be just the tool they were looking for.

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Matt is a community organizer and founder of 3DPPVD, Ocean State Maker Mill, and HackPittsburgh. He is Make's digital fabrication and reviews editor.

View more articles by Matt Stultz


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