The Zeepro Zim has reached 30% of its lofty $300,000 goal. If fully funded, it will be an achievement landing the Zim in the top 10 on our list of successfully crowd funded 3D printers. There are still 32 days left in the campaign.
Zeepro's founders are currently doing R&D in France, with an office in Connecticut for US marketing and expanded future operations. CEO Philippe Guglielmetti has a background in manufacturing, having formerly run yacht company Arcoa. There is a wide range of experience among the rest of the Zeepro team members, from entrepreneurship to administrative and technical.
To put it bluntly, with the Zim, you get a lot of machine for the price. It is an FFF personal 3D printer, available with one or two extruders, designed with aesthetic quality for the desktop. Each extruder can utilize separate filament, allowing the printer to incorporate more than one color into a print job without having to pause and swap, or using water-soluble PVA for support material, which is easy to remove.
The Zim uses a cartridge system that loads and unloads filament automatically, and keeps moisture away from PVA. A refillable cartridge is also available for those who want to use their own filament. It prints with a minimum layer height of 80 microns and its build volume is 15 x 15 x 15 cm (5.9" x 5.9" x 5.9"). It boasts print speeds up to 110 mm/s and can employ ABS or PLA 1.75 mm filament. It can read STL, AMF and OBJ files. It features a removable glass build platform, WiFi, Ethernet, USB (Windows 8.1 pending), internal lighting and a video camera that lets the user monitor print jobs from a smart phone. A print area enclosure and heated platform are options Zeepro plans to release through their web site in the future.
Available pledges start at $599 for a single head (one extruder, can be upgraded to two extruders later) plus one PLA filament cartridge. On the high end, for $899 there is the Zim Special – a dual head (two extruder) machine plus two PLA filament cartridges. Neither price includes shipping or taxes. Zeepro has stated the shipping is likely to be around $55 for US deliveries and up to $150 for international, depending on location.