Last year the FABtotum completed a hugely successful Indiegogo campaign, which saw its target tripled in just a few days of going live. Today, the company has announced that the FABtotum Personal Fabricator has started being distributed among early adopters.
Founded in 2013 as the world’s first multi-purpose 3D printer, the FABtotum is an all-in-one machine that enables users to print, cut, mill and 3D scan. The machine is aimed at DIY designers and professionals alike and offers a wide variety of creative options.
"Before pitching our idea, we thought that the concept was radical and required to be introduced in small steps,” said Marco Rizzuto, FABtotum Chief Executive Officer. “During the campaign it became immediately clear that people understood it, loved it and wanted more. Over 10 months of development later, the Indiegogo prototype looked so raw and primitive in comparison it barely was the same device.”
The reception for FABtotum has been hugely positive and the project raised over $589,000 from contributors in their $50,000 fundraising campaign. With over 10 times their original budget, the team set about making significant improvements to the prototype.
“We upgraded the milling motor to 200W, reinforced the structure and redesign the belt system,” explains Marco. “We added a heated build platform, automated auto bed levelling, upgraded the camera to 5mp and built our own hi-performance Arduino-derived 5-axis control board.”
Designed with an open source approach to software and hardware powered by the Raspberry Platform, it includes autonomous printing capabilities, 8GB built in memory and the ability to be controlled by any computer, smartphone or tablet. It also features a software plugin system and expandable head mount.
"3D printing is, for many, a part of a broader movement, in which people get back some 'manufacturing freedom' in their own hands,” says Marco. “Being able to acquire objects and produce parts with various materials is the key to access digital and physical designs, both physically and digitally.”
The launch of the FABtotum Marks a milestone in the FABtotum' path as a multipurpose platform, as more and more optional heads and tools like laser and blade cutting, paste extrusion and advanced probe digitizer are expected to be available from both FABtotum and third party manufacturers.
"The biggest satisfaction we have on a daily basis is reading projects and ideas from emails and our forum,” adds Marco. “We had an hobbyist who wanted to acquire and catalogue his ancient coin collection in 3D with the built-in probe scanner, a medic who wanted to print a structure for growing bone tissue for a scientific paper and an RC enthusiast who wanted to 3d-mill custom made RC planes parts on 4 axis. Every time it's a different idea, sometimes from people who never had a 3D printer, meaning that there is something bigger going on.”