The resolution and materials commonly available for FDM/FFF are too poor for application like these. The quality of the print is just too poor and they are only using p400 ABS for material. That is why their prints aren't very durable.
SLA however offers the resolution and the materials to produce parts that are strong and reliable enough for these types of rugged applications. Some photopolymers for SLA are 100-1,000 x stronger than the ABS they are using.
FDM is slow compared to new SLA, micro-nozzle and inkjet deposition processes. I'm not sure what FDM printer tech from the 80's they are currently using, but by using newer additive manufacturing techniques and new materials they can cut their 2500 hour print time down to well under 250. Inkjet and SLA is capable of print rates in the Liters per Hour and easily down to the 10's of microns of resolution. You just won't find these types of printers sold by the old 3D printer co's sitting on their old 80's tech that they are still trying to squeeze every last day out of their old patents.
Some of the problems are with patenting the obvious or having overlapping patents. Too many patents overlap each other or are painfully obvious that are granted with the idea that these issues should be settled later in the courts. This has led to abuse of the original intent of the system.
If society also decides that patents are only for the purpose of financial gain and the deliberate hinderance to scientific progress and the betterment of mankind then they deserve what they get. Most people are just unaware of the current gaming of the system and don't feel this way.
Inkjets have been used for years to print living cells and also the scaffolding for cells to adhere to. The problem isn't so much the tech but the sea of patents blocking anyone from bringing a complete system to market. When this problem is solved look for rapid progress on many fronts. Until then maybe it will only be available in countries that favor technological progress over nurturing an obsessive compulsion to hoard money that goes unused.
Patents are the problem with tissue engineering, just as it is with other 3D print applications. I'm not against patents. It's just that the current way it's being run isn't working to help move tech progress forward, it only helps a few to make money and also keep control over the rate of progress.
Security seems to be much higher here currently. We are having a more difficult time right now shipping anything such as liquids and chemicals using the local logistics companies within China. I've asked around, and the most common answer is that it's due to it being right before the busiest travel period in China.
$49 Cubieboard Allwinner A10 + 512M/1GB DDR3 , 4Gb Nand Flash, 10/100M Ethernet, HDMI, 2 USB Host, 1 micro SD slot, 1 SATA, 1 ir, 96 GPIO pins ncluding I2C, SPI, RGB/LVDS, CSI/TS, FM-IN, ADC, CVBS, VGA, SPDIF-OUT, R-TP
£40 Allwinner A10 + 1GB RAM, 4Gb NAND, Wifi: 802.11 b/g/n, 3.5mm Earphone Jack, 1x Mini Usb, 1x Hdmi Out, Micro Sd slot,
$65.00 Allwinner A10 1GB RAM, 4GB NAND, 3.5mm microphone jack, 3.3v TTL 4-pin header, 2 x USB A 2.0, 10/100 Ethernet, Realtek 802.11n WiFi, HDMI up to 1080p, 3.5mm composite AV, 3.5mm component Y/Pb/Pr, SDHC card slot
$89 Freescale i.MX6 Duallite, 1 GB DDR3, Audio, Optical S/PDI, HDMI, Camera interface, SD Slot, Serial, Expanison header GPIO, USB, USB OTG, GB-LAN, WiFi 802.11n, Bluetooth
$89 Exynos4412 1.7Ghz ARM Cortex-A9 Quad Core, 10/100Mbps Ethernet, 2 x High speed USB2.0 Host,HDMI, SD Slot, Headphone jack
It uses the A10 and has more features. The A10 is a full featured version of the A13
1G ARM cortex-A8 processor, NEON, VFPv3, 256KB L2 cache
Mali400, OpenGL ES GPU
512M/1GB DDR3 @480MHz
HDMI 1080p Output
4Gb Nand Flash
2 USB Host, 1 micro SD slot, 1 SATA, 1 ir
96 extend pin including I2C, SPI, RGB/LVDS, CSI/TS, FM-IN, ADC, CVBS, VGA, SPDIF-OUT, R-TP..
Android, Ubuntu and other Linux distributions
Some of us would just visit the site daily without siging up until a couple of years later to be able to submit stories, post or moderate.
Maybe you haven't seen the SLA printer projects that use lasers or DLP such as LemonCurry for curing photopolymers? Feature sizes are often down to 1 micron per layer and only a few microns for X and Y.
Photopolymers are available in a wide range of properties that are tough enough for use as end products and not just product concept look-a-likes. Photopolymers for inkjet have also come a long way and are also used to create rigid and durable end products with features down to 25-50 microns. What you might be used to seeing are the FDM or FFF (fused filament fabrication) RepRap type printers that print with molten plastics with much lower resolution in the order of 0.3mm.
that anyone can do it. It doesn't require skills in operating a lathe, mill, grinder or other machine or hand tools. Anyone that can download a 3D file can then just press print and they will have an object. A sharp pointy object or printed parts that might be assembled into a firearm.
This the point people tend to miss when they compare 3D printing to a home workshop. The workshop requires skills developed over time and practice to fabricate something as complex as a firearm. Not everyone is capable of doing this. Unfortunately it is a minority these days. A 3D printer in the near future on the other hand will only require the operator to master downloading a 3D model and pressing the print button.
The prices of Photopolymers used in SLA type 3D printers has dropped to below the cost of PLA and ABS used in FDM printers and continues to drop. Photopolymers are dropping to under $10/kg in high volumes, so the costs of the materials are becoming less of an issue.
It's true that there are several open hardware printer projects for FDM type printers that focus mainly on printing with one material at a time such as
RepRap or Open Source Photopolymer DLP 3D Printers such as LemonCurry
3D printers are also printing with more than one material and are already printing multilayer printed circuit boards with only fluids. Much of the development work in 3D printers recently has been from open hardwave projects vs the industry since many of the old patents have now expired.
There are also eoma68 cards in the works using the AMD Fusion APU's that will only use open source firmware so you won't have to settle for EFI or a closed BIOS as you have to with Intel.
1ghz Dual-Core CPU with AMD Radeon HD 6250 GPU,
AMD APUs for Notebooks, Netbooks & Tablets