Looking to buy a metal 3D printer? Check our ExOne X1 160 Pro review to find out whether this printer fits the bill.
The ExOne X1 160Pro is a 3D printer that can print over 20 materials, including metals, ceramics and composites. This printer is has been developed by Exone, which has over 20 years of experience in 3D printing. The printer is designed for reliable and accurate reproduction of parts of the most complex shapes. Therefore, it can be used for rapid prototyping as well as batch production.
About the Manufacturer
For many years, ExOne has been producing 3D printers for printing using the Binder Jetting method. This method involves layer-by-layer injection of a binder onto a powder of a material, in which models are created for further baking. The procedure includes printing, sintering and binder removal.
Binder Jetting technology is widely used for metal 3D printing.
ExOne specializes in the production of large industrial grade 3D printers . Together with Voxeljet, ExOne has worked in the oil and gas, automotive, shipbuilding and other industries.
The ExOne X1 160Pro is billed as the world’s largest Binder Jetting metal 3D printer. The printer uses Metal Jet Printing technology, which enables the creation of metal parts at a much cheaper price than manufacturing using traditional technologies.
In this article, we will talk about the characteristics of the printer and its print quality. We’ll also look at how to set it up and the benefits of using the printer.
Let’s get started.
ExOne X1 160Pro Review
- Software: Industry 4.0, ExOne Scout
3D PRINTER SPECIFICATIONS
- Print volume/Working chamber: 800 x 500 x 400 mm
- Layer thickness: from30 microns
- Print speed: 10,000 cm³/hour
The ExOne X1 160Pro is a ceramic and metal 3D printer with a build volume of 800 x 500 x 400 mm. This build volume is 2.5 times more than the volume of competitors’ printers.
The printer is open, i.e, it can print on multiple third-party ExOne certified materials. Examples include stainless steels 316L, 304L, and 17-4PH.
The print speed of this printer can be adjusted, depending on the material used and the geometry of the part being produced. The machine can reaching a printing speed of 10,000 cm³/hour. This combination of volume and speed results in unmatched performance.
Features of ExOne X1 160Pro
The design of the printer is as a result of over 20 years of experience of the manufacturer. With the ExOne, you can print parts with geometry that are impossible to make in traditional production.
See the video below for an overview of the metal 3D printer.
The ExOne X1 160Pro is designed for high volume printing of parts and functional prototypes. Before this metal 3D printer, there was no printer on the market that could guarantee such a volume of printing using Binder Jetting technology.
Binder Jetting technology has a wide range of applications, from aerospace to dental and jewelry. This technology offers the precision to suit every application.
One of the main drawbacks of other printers that use Binder Jetting technology is the small amount of printable materials they can handle. And this is one of the areas where the ExOne beats them.
The ExOne Pro 160 can print various materials with different properties. The printer not only handles metals and ceramics, but also composites.
The company offers materials certified according to generally accepted standards and that meet customer requirements. The printer can also use third-party materials.
ExOne Triple ACT Technology
ExOne’s proprietary Triple ACT technology allows for more precise print control and tighter, more durable parts. This system was used in previous ExOne 3D printers and is retained in the X1 160Pro. The technology allows high-quality and accurate printing with powder, the average particle size of which is 9 micrometers.
Triple ACT technology involves a three-step procedure: dispensing, placement and compaction, controlling the density and uniformity of powder placement in the print chamber.
By vibration of a specially designed hopper, each dose of powder is strictly controlled by volume and evenly distributed in the print chamber.
Two cylindrical rollers (with and without knurling) are used for leveling and compaction of the placed material,.
According to ExOne, this three-stage system ensures that the density of parts changes by 0.3% over the entire printable area of the 3D printer.
First Impressions of the ExOne X1 160Pro
The ExOne 160Pro looks like a small mobile home from the front. You can see everything that happens inside through a transparent window.
To the left of the window is the user interface comprising of a touchscreen control panel and an emergency stop button. Using this screen, you can control the operation of the printer. The manufacturer provides instructions for using all of its functions.
The inside of the printer is illuminated by a lamp that allows you to see the printing process.
Setting up the ExOne X1 160Pro
The device is delivered fully assembled. You just need to connect it to start printing.
Read the instruction manual carefully before starting any operation. If you experience and issues, contact the manufacturer.
Setting up the ExOne X1 160Pro will take no more than a few minutes.
Technology and Cost of Printing
Binder Jetting is a 3D printing technology in which a printhead distributes a liquid binder over a thin layer of material powder particles, similar to how ink is applied to paper in inkjet printing on a conventional household printer. The application of the binder is repeated layer by layer until the desired detail is obtained.
The powder particles of the printing material can be composed of metal, sand, ceramics or composites. Therefore, you can print a wide range of parts with different properties and for different applications.
The cost and time of creating a part using this technology is much lower than creating a similar part using traditional production methods.
Binder Jetting print quality is superior to that of FDM and SLA printers .
The ExOne X1 160 Pro 3D printer uses the company’s proprietary slicing and print management software. The slicer allows you to make changes to parts and set print settings.
The manufacturer’s website has a contact form that you can fill for advice and additional information. The manufacturer also keeps in touch with users through social media accounts.
ExOne X1 160Pro Print Samples
Here are some metal print samples made using the ExOne X1 160 Pro 3D printer.
Why Buy ExOne X1 160Pro 3D Printer
Here are some reasons why buying the ExOne X1 160Pro 3D printer is viable:
- The cost of a 3D printer is very low when compared to other industrial equipment with similar capabilities
- You’ll get above average 3D print quality, thanks to the patented ExOne Triple ACT technology
- The 3D printing speed is fast and is adjustable according to the part to be printed and the material used
- A wide range of materials available for printing on this printer
- There are many industries in which the objects created by this printer can be used. Even if you change business, you can continue to use the printer in your production or find third-party print customers.
The ExOne 160Pro is based on Binder Jetting technology, which is one of the most accurate 3D metal printing technologies. The technology results in high quality products.
This printer can produce large, high-precision models made of metal, ceramic and composite parts for use in a wide range of industries. The printer can significantly speed up, reduce cost and simplify the technological process, thus giving your enterprise a competitive advantage. It is truly an indispensable tool for production.