This technology has been invented in the late 80s and it was firstly available only for bigger companies: the machines were big and very expensive. Today, thanks to the RepRap Project and to the expiration of the patent, it is quite easy to find affordable 3D printers like the FABtotum. Not many of them, anyway, are supported by a company but are more likely to be makers’ projects.
Here are the main reasons to prefer this solution:
- prices are generally lower for both the machine and materials;
- FFF can be quite quicker;
- sizes are bigger;
- materials range is wider (PLA, ABS, Nylon are the most common, see “Materials“).
FFF 3D printers are mainly divided in two other categories: >XYZ Cartesian 3D printers and Delta 3D printers. The first kind has three axis: a carriage moves on the X and Y and a square bed moves up and down on the Z, just like on the FABtotum. It allows to have a greater surface and it is of easier administration for the user. Delta 3D printers have an hexagonal or round bed and three arms that hold the extruder: in these products there are no fixed axis but all the movements are made by the arms.