Zeus & FABtotum: Two 3D Printer/Scanners Push The Envelope On Kickstarter, Indiegogo

Two 3D printers currently crowdfunding on Kickstarter and Indiegogo seek to push the envelope when it comes to machines for makers. Both are said to offer interesting features that go above and beyond a normal 3D printer.

The Zeus 3D fax machine is fully funded on Kickstarter, and the big draw to the Zeus is the fact that it basically acts as an all-in-one 3D printer. Users can print, scan, copy and even fax designs from one unit to another. The campaign’s pitch video outlines some of the industries that this technology would be useful to. A specific example was the fashion industry, where footwear designs could be easily sent to potential buyers with the click of a proverbial button.

This sets it apart from other 3D printers previously funded on crowdfunding sites. (You may remember other Kickstarted 3D printers like the Buccaneer and DeltaMaker.)

The device was designed and developed by AIO Robotics, a “high-tech startup that targets the 3D printer market with innovative All-In-One 3D copy machines.” The team has worked hard to make sure that this device is easy to use, as they clarify on the campaign page…

Wouldn’t it be great to buy a 3D printer, take it out of the box, plug it in, and be able to use it right away, the same way you would with any other piece of consumer electronics such as computers and TVs? Just as 2D printers naturally evolved to incorporate more functions into one device, we set out to revolutionize the 3D printing industry to give makers a complete 3D printing experience with a multifunctional machine. Finally, you will now be able to scan, print, copy, and fax objects from one device at an affordable price.

A Zeus 3D fax machine can be reserved on Kickstarter for $1,999. Delivery is estimated for July 2014.

The FABtotum Personal Fabricator is also fully funded, albeit on Indiegogo rather than Kickstarter. The device doesn’t offer the same faxing capability as the Zeus, but it adds the ability for subtractive manufacturing. In other words, it is said to print in 3D as well as mill certain materials including “wood, light aluminium or brass alloys.”

The FABtotum was developed by Marco Rizzuto and Giovanni Grieco, two 28 year olds with a background in architecture. The team plans to talk about the FABtotum at the first European Maker Faire in Rome on October 3-6, 2013.

Thanks to a sturdy structure and unconventional tecnical solutions FABtotum is capable of subtractive machining without compromising 3d printing volumes or printing speeds. Switching to subtractive mode is easy: just remove and tilt the double sided printing plane and expose the milling plane with built in fixtures to secure your workpiece. Along with 3/4 Axis Subtractive Machining, Fabtotum is capable of 3-axis hybrid Additive / Subtractive manufacturing, meaning you can work in dual mode without loosing the position or having to move the workpiece.

The FABtotum comes in at a cheaper price than the Zeus. Claim to a unit comes with contributions at or above $1,099. The campaign still has just short of 30 days left. Actually, the Zeus and the FABtotum are basically neck and neck when it comes to funding, with the FABtotum maintaining a slight lead. It will be interesting to see which of these devices ends up with the most crowd support once these two campaigns come to an end in the first half of October.

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