Aug 22, 2018 | By Thomas
Mosaic Manufacturing, a 3D printing specialist based in Toronto, Canada, has today introduced Palette 2, a 3D printing device that enables multi-material printing in single-extruder FDM 3D printers. Palette 2 is an upgraded version of Palette+, Mosaic’s flagship product.
Although most 3D printers are capable of producing intricate pieces of work, they are limited to printing single color, single material parts. Instead of requiring multi-nozzles or upgrades to the printer, Mosaic’s Palette / Palette+ device, an automatic filament splicer, works side by side with a 3D printer and can turn ordinary, single-extruder 3D printers into machines with multi-material capabilities.
3D printing with Palette starts with a multicolor 3D model. Their software examines the GCODE of a multimaterial print and determine the precise lengths of each material required. The system uses a unique and internal cutter called the Splice Core that precisely combines and splices the filament as it prints. This can feed into any printer without modifying it, and you have everything you need for multicolor printing with the printer you already own. The device takes up to four filaments and combines them into a single filament strand.
Back in 2016, Mosaic Manufacturing ran a Kickstarter campaign for its original Mosaic Palette and broke the $100,000 mark within the first 12 hours before rounding out with a total of $230,000 in campaign pledges. In 2017, Mosaic Manufacturing introduced $799 Palette+ which keeps the useful, one-of-a-kind “splicing” functionality of the original while adding new material compatibility, allowing for select soluble, semi-flexible (TPU), and PETG materials alongside the reliable PLA-PLA prints.
Now the company launched its multi-material 3D printing ecosystem, which includes Palette 2, the CANVAS Software Platform, and CANVAS Hub. Palette 2 can be used alongside a user’s existing 3D printer, or can be integrated directly into a 3D printer by the printer’s manufacturer. The Palette 2 devices enable users to combine flexible materials, rigid materials, soluble materials and different coloured ones in a single print. The company says it is compatible with nearly all filament-based printers on the market.
Palette 2 automatically calibrates for your 3D printer, comes with a color touch screen and no longer requires any external sensors or additions to your 3D printer. It also features auto-runout detection, and Mosaic’s next generation of solid-state filament splicing technology.
As part of the Palette 2 launch, Mosaic Manufacturing has also announced that MakerGear, Raise3D, Dremel, Robo 3D, gCreate, and MAKEiT are all Palette 2 and Palette 2 Pro integration partners. These companies will be launching 3D printers with integrated Palette 2 experiences, so that users will have access to multi-material 3D printing as a native feature.
“Palette 2’s integration model is similar to the Intel Inside approach in personal computing,” said co-founder and CEO Mitchell Debora. “In the same way that Intel’s processors made computers powerful enough to be useful for ordinary people, Palette 2 makes the output of 3D printers substantially more valuable and relevant to a larger market.”
Alongside Palette 2, Mosaic has developed a multi-material cloud software platform – CANVAS. CANVAS was designed to streamline multi-material workflow, automating and simplifying the process to enable anyone using a 3D printer to access multi-material slicing.
“The CANVAS platform features the industry’s best user experience for multi-material printing, version control for print settings, and data-driven setting optimizations, and it will soon enable users to ‘paint’ and colorize 3D printable files in a simple, intuitive way,” said co-founder and COO Chris Labelle. “We’re excited for Palette 2 and CANVAS to elevate the industry and become the standard in quality 3D printing.”
CANVAS Hub is a small piece of hardware which connects Palette 2 and 3D printer and acts as a way for the two to communicate. This communication means that Palette 2 knows exactly how much filament your printer is consuming and is able to stay perfectly in sync. CANVAS Hub also allows you to communicate with CANVAS over WiFi and control your entire printing experience wirelessly, including controlling your printer and your Palette 2, and starting prints.
Palette 2 is now available on Mosaic’s website starting at a pre-order price of $499. The Palette 2 Pro costs $699 and lets you print faster than the Palette 2. Mass production is already underway and the first batch of Palette 2’s are estimated to ship by the end of September.
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