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Tree, Root and Mote: Build Your Own 3D Printer Farm, on Kickstarter
In September, CEL unveiled the Root, a remote control device that allows users to monitor, control and share prints via wired or wireless network, and the Tree, a sturdy shelving unit designed to house multiple Robox printers, at the TCT Show, as you can see in the image below:
Today, CEL is launching the new accessories, along with the Mote, a touchscreen interface for the Root, via a new Kickstarter campaign that already collected the requested funding!
Each component can be used on its own or with the others, depending on the user needs. Although a typical user will have just one Robox, Root is a really exciting addition to the system. Users can remotely start and stop prints even when the printer is in another room,” said CEL CEO and Robox creator Chris Elsworthy. “If they choose to open the system to the web, they can access it from anywhere. The system can alert users when a job is complete or of any problems, filament running out or becoming tangled or jammed so they can resolve the problem and resume the print.
“In a business environment, or where there are multiple Robox units available, these new systems will make prototyping and development much more efficient. Each Robox connected to Root can be visible to others on the network, so an office full of individually controlled printers is also a networked print farm. More printers allows faster printing but also redundancy and increased flexibility.”
Root is based on the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B, and can be connected to a network via a computer, tablet, smartphone, or the Mote. By attaching Mote to a Tree, a standalone print farm can be created for an entire office, according to CEL.
CEL is also getting into distributed manufacturing. The company is partnering with electronics distributor RS Components, as well as filament manufacturer Polymaker, and will be teaming up with local makers and services to distribute the Root, Mote and Tree, reducing transportation costs.