Leapfrog has announced a new flagship 3D printer, the Bolt Pro. The Netherlands-based company had last year announced the Bolt, a grand departure from their previous models with new features and larger build volumes. The notable feature of the original Bolt was its independent dual extrusion system, which permits printing two different models simultaneously (or two copies, or two materials, etc.)
Now, a year later, they’ve announced the Bolt Pro. What’s different? I looked at the feature changes:
Industrial linear guides in the Y-axis increasing printing precision and reducing noise: This is a good upgrade, as it provides the independent dual extruders with a superior motion system over the previous solid rod system. While the dual extruder system may suggest a requirement for an improvement to the Y-axis, I am wondering why there isn’t a linear guide on the X-axis. However, their detail page says the Bolt Pro “has linear guides“.
Interactive user interface start-up guide: This type of feature is always helpful, but usually only for new installations or operators.
Ability to swap filaments mid-print: I’m not sure why this is a feature, as almost all 3D printers can do this by simply pausing the machine and changing the filament. However, it is very important if your spool is nearing completion. There may be an advantage to being able to do so on a single extruder during a dual print, particularly if you are 3D printing objects serially (whole objects at a time), as you could end up with a print plate containing objects with different materials.
Improved cooling and fan-duct: This, I believe, could be very important for print quality. Cooling is vitally important as the soft extruded plastic should be frozen into shape as soon as possible. It appears Leapfrog is focusing on this, so expect higher quality prints on the Bolt Pro.
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