With its Solido 3D printer, SolidModel USA offers a good and user-friendly solution for engineering firms tired of outsourcing their prototyping needs and associated costs and problems. It offers good functionality and lets your company build quality concept models, and it’s also very user-friendly. The other bonus is its low cost of operation, but if you’re looking for a hobbyist model to play around with, Solido 3D printer might be too expensive at $9,995 USD.
How Does the Solido 3D Printer Work?
The Solido utilizes a process called “Plastic Sheet Lamination”, or PSL – watch the video of the process here. It’s fairly similar to Laminated Object Manufacturing – but instead of paper, it uses plastic, or rolls of engineered PVC, to be precise. This choice of material makes Solido’s 3D printer immune to certain problems LOM printers might have; for instance, you don’t have to lacquer the part to protect it from moisture. This engineered PVC – called SolidVC – also comes in different colors, so if you want your printed model to be cream, blue, black, red, or amber transparent, you don’t even have to paint it. This means that very often there won’t be any finishing work involved; just send your STL file to the printer, wait for it to do its job, and you have your model, hassle-free. The produced model is fairly durable, too; for instance, you can print molds that will be strong enough to allow you to get multiple parts via injection of silicon-based materials.
|Solido 3D printer specifications and information|
|Technology||PSL – Plastic Sheet Lamination (very similar to LOM)|
(Width x Depth x Height)
|~ 18.1" x 30.3" x 16.5"/ ~ 460x770x420mm|
|Weight||79.4lbs/36kg (without cartridge + roll)|
|Build materials||Engineered Plastic|
|Price||Starting at $9,995 at Solid Model USA|
|Price of material||Starting at $295 at Solid Model USA|
|Manufacturer’s website and contacts||http://www.solidmodelusa.com/|
It’s accurate, it prints decent-sized parts, it’s cheap for what it can do and it’s very easy to use. Actually, this hassle-free philosophy is what differentiates the Solido 3D printer from the competition and is one of its main selling points – it’s very, very user-friendly. It comes fully assembled (no wonder, at that price), and is very easy to set up. It doesn’t care if your electricity turns off; the Solido’ll just continue its job once power’s back. It also doesn’t matter if you run out of material mid-print; once you replace the material kit it’ll continue from where it stopped. And of course, replacing the material kit is as easy as swapping batteries in a flashlight (if your batteries weighted 8kg). The Solido 3D printer can be shared in a local network like your usual 2D printer, it doesn’t require scheduled maintenance, and it may even correct errors in your STL file.
For what the printer is supposed to do – aiding in the design process – there really aren’t any major cons, although the material scrap rate might seem too big for some.
The Bottom Line:
The Solido 3D printer is a quality, user-friendly solution that lets you print fairly robust plastic parts from cheap material. You can just order it and start printing once it arrives – and it won’t disappoint.