Hyrel 3D Printer Can Squirt Out Self-Setting Sugru And Even Play-Doh
The Hyrel 3D printer looks like any other single-extruder additive printer. But thanks to a fairly unique nozzle called the HYREL Emulsifiable Extruder (EMO-25) you can use it to squirt out usual materials like Play-Doh, air-drying clay, and even Sugru, a self-setting rubber that dries into a solid, usable object.
The creator, Daniel Hutchison funded his project on Kickstarter and is preparing to ship the printer in the next few months. The printer actually contains a full PC and raised $150,000 on Kickstarter.
These materials are important because they can be smoothed down and, using products like Sugru, you could feasibly print rubber gaskets directly inside plastic objects using a dual-extruder system.
The extruder is also good for schools and artists who may want to produce, say, stop-motion animations using clay or reusable models. Because you can squeeze the clay back into the cartridge and squirt it out again you have a minimum of waste if the print fails. You can also shave down and move the printed clay in ways that are impossible with traditional plastics.
The printers start at $1,995 and go up to $3,000. The more expensive models include a heated build platform for ABS plastic (the ABS needs the heat to stick to the platform) as well as in-built PC that can be used to slice and print models you create.
By John Biggs