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3D Systems Printers promo by Will.i.am

by Sybren Bakker

In cooperation with Coca-Cola company and with the assistance of celeb Will.i.am, 3D Systems launched a new desktop replicator machine named Ekocycle Cube 3D printer that uses filament partly made of discarded plastic bottles.

In 3D Systems' announcement and Will.i.am's video there's quite alot emphazise on the environmental "green" benefits by using recycled plastic bottles as material for their 3D printer. Some even talk about 'Coca Cola 3D printing'
But the filament cartridges only contain 25% of recycled material, so the rest which is a considerable 75% is just the usual plastic material.

The Ekostyle Cube 3D printer looks somewhat similar to their Cube 3 device. Price setting is $1,199. For this price you'll also get software files containing pre-designed products you can make with the printer such as bracelet, robot, vase, shoe, phone case, guitar plectrum, rings.

But how good will these self-made items be? Todays desktop 3D printers don't seem to produce the nice looking products we desire. In fact it looks a bit cheap actually, when having in mind a 3D printer-made phone case. Well okay, that is my personal opinion.

Furthermore, applying recycled material in this plug and play consumer 3D printer or should we say 'Will i am 3D printing' ? isn't exactly a new approach. But at least, it has a positive angle by using used plastic bottles. But will that make the filament cartridges cheaper too?

Those Ekocycle cartridges as said contain 25% reclycled material, also called rPET filament, and you can choose the colors black, white, red and natural. Enabling you to print simultaneously in dual color

Further characteristics are: 3D printing in 70-micron high resolution, relatively fast speeds and up to 6 x 6 x 6 inch in size.
And with the right software - free to download Cubify app (both Android and iOS systems) - you can even print designs right from your smartphone, as this 3DS printer is equipped with WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity.


My overall 'Ekocycle Will.i.am' impression is that this 3D Systems promo by Will.i.am is more an advertisement for selling their printers than that it is a revolutionary development in 3D printing.


3DS' announcement


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