5/Meet the MakerBot
Wherein the reader is informed of the mecha-
nisms that imbue common and readily avail-
able tools and building materials with the raw
power of making and imagination.
For many people, the very idea of a MakerBot is still something entirely new-
a machine that can make anything still seems like science fiction. As Mak-
erBot and other low-cost printer vendors work to bring 3D printing to the
masses, science fiction is becoming everyday fact. Still, only a few people
have seen one in person, and even fewer know how they works. Though the
underlying engineering principles behind a MakerBot are quite complex, in
a nutshell, a MakerBot is a very precise, robotic hot glue gun mounted to a
very precise, robotic positioning system. Let's take a look under the hood.
The MakerBot Replicator 2 is a state-of-the-art desktop 3D printer, with ca-
pabilities above and beyond the previous generations of MakerBots. It has a
huge build platform which gives you the superpower to print things BIG! It
has advanced software and improved hardware that makes print resolution
finer than ever. Every one was assembled with love in Brooklyn by skilled
technicians. Best of all, it was designed with a focus on ease of use so you
can have your MakerBot Replicator 2 replicating within minutes of taking it
out of the box.
Facts and Figures
The Replicator 2's build volume is nearly 7 liters (more than 400 cubic in-
ches); that's roughly the size of a shoebox. It's tricky to imagine volumes in
a box-shape, because we're so used to thinking of volumes that are roughly
cylindrical. So you may be thinking “I really don't think I can fit 3 two liter soda
bottles in that space!” To help you visualize the comparison, Figure 5-1 shows
three shapes: a 2 liter soda bottle, a 5 liter cylinder with a diameter equal to
the depth of the build platform, and the MakerBot Replicator 2's build area.
Table 5-1 lists the Replicator 2's specifications.