Written by Alex Crease on October 4, 2016 here in the Markforged Blog.
The Mark X
Earlier this year, we released the Mark Two. The printer included features like the isotropic carbon fiber option, the ability to fit fibers into smaller areas, and higher reliability and repeatability overall. Since then we have broken new grounds with material advancements: our chopped carbon fiber Onyx material providing higher stiffness and a professional surface finish, and our High-Strength, High-Temperature Fiberglass expanding the applications of 3D printing to new heights with a stronger and more heat resistant material.
Today, we add to our portfolio of high strength 3D printers and applications by introducing the Mark X. This new 3D printer takes the strength and quality of the Markforged materials to a new level with increased size, precision, and resolution. While we’ll go more in-depth into some of these in future blog posts and our Mark X Webinar, some of our favorite new features are covered here.
Larger Build Volume
The most apparent part about the Mark X is its size, with a build volume of 330 mm x 250 mm x 200 mm (XYZ). What this means is the ability to print larger parts with the high-strength materials we provide – applications range from prosthetics to industrial tooling, and much more. We’ve already enjoyed the benefits of its larger size to showcase some of its applications:
Even with the larger build volume, we’ve kept the footprint of the machine relatively small. Included with the Mark X is a cabinet for tool and filament storage, so despite its larger print size it can still find a home in the office, machine shop, or lab.
It’s not the size that differentiates the Mark X. It’s the suite of sensors that make the printer an intelligent, integrated machine. This sensing system includes encoders mounted on our extruder motors for filament detection, but that’s not all. The Mark X features a novel laser displacement sensor for in-process inspection. What this allows you to do is scan your parts mid-print: you can select a layer for inspection to assure dimensional accuracy before letting the print continue.
By including this feature, you can ensure critical tolerances in your printed parts before the print finishes, thus cutting down on material waste and time to a completed printed product. This feature enables you to close the loop between your designs and finished products.
The Mark X has improved repeatability over the entire print envelope because of a stiffer gantry and a flatter build plate. With this level of precision the printer can hit 50 micron Z layer resolution for highly detailed prints. This provides you with an amazing surface finish for professional end-use parts.
Professional 3D Printing is on the rise, with more and more educators, research labs, and companies looking to expand their additive manufacturing capabilities. However, many people looking for a 3D printer have to make a tradeoff between performance, precision, and presentation. In addition to its larger size, the Mark X offers all three: the strength of metal, breakthrough precision with in-process inspection, and a sleek surface finish with near indiscernible layer lines. No compromises needed.