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3D Printing’s Latest Crowdfunding Success Story is Rapide 3D and their Sub $600 Rapide Lite
When the Australian company launched their Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign for a new line of 3D Printers near the end of September they were only asking for about $15,000. They ended up raising 1,511% above their goal.
Rapide 3D was started as a product development company, however in 2012 they decided to shift gears and design and produce their own 3D printers. The company wanted to make a line of 3D printers that were not only affordable but would also set new standards of quality. While it is too soon to tell if they’ve set those standards, by raising an impressive $226,000 in only a month they certainly seem to be doing something right.
The Rapide Lite 3D Printer will be available with three sizes of build volumes, 200mm, 350mm and 500mm. All three models can print with a 50 micron resolution and include a heated bed, Q extruder and will be manufactured from aircraft grade aluminium. They can use both 1.75mm and 3.0mm filament and can print using a large selection of materials like PLA, ABS, PVA, Nylon, HIPS and Laywood. While the Rapide Lite 3D Printer may not be the fastest printer on the block, it can print at a respectable 150mms.
The Rapide Lite’s real innovation is in their X-Wing Technology, which Rapide 3D says rethinks the way that 3D printers are constructed and applies the principles of luxury car design to their printers. By placing the X axis stepper motor at the center of the printer they say that it stabilizes the entire machine and allows it to print faster with more refined detail.
“This is one of the biggest steps we have taken in the technology field. As a manufacturer, it is our responsibility to provide our customers with the opportunity to experience the latest technology sooner,” CEO of Rapide 3D Ethan Hunt explained, “Rapide 3D printers are game changers in the market and challenge the core of affordable 3D printing for the masses. The world is fast becoming a place where technology is not just an option, but a requirement for basic existence.”
Because their campaign was so successful Rapide 3D was invited to participate in Indiegogo’s Forever Funding Pilot Program which allows some campaigns to continue indefinitely. So despite the campaign being fully funded and having been closed they have still made their 3D printers available for purchase through Indiegogo.
The Rapide Lite 500 will be available in April and can be purchased early for $3,899 while the 350 will be available in March and can be purchased for $1,699. But the big news is the early bird price for the 200 has been extended, and right now Rapide 3D is offering to ship it to you in time for Christmas. So not only can you get a Rapide 3D 200 for $599 – a savings of $400 – but you can have it in about a month, which is extremely rare for a crowdfunding campaign. In fact, according to Rapide 3D they have already begun shipping out some of the early bird contributors.
You can find out more about Rapide 3D and their line of 3D printers on their website, and you can purchase your own Rapide Lite 3D printer on their on-going Indiegogo campaign.