Have you ever thought that the basic mechanical setup you need to build a milling machine, a 3D printer and an engraving machine are roughly the same? The makers of BoXZY had the same idea. What they have produced is a single, versatile maker-space machine in a box.
To quote from their Kickstarter page “Upgrade your desktop with power of CNC milling AND laser cutting AND 3D printing in the space that once held only a 3D printer. Each aluminium attachment quickly and easily slips into the solid metal head, latches in place, and BoXZY engages a new manufacturing power, providing on-demand capability. BoXZY’s interchangeable attachments equip you with the power of real time adaptation, allowing you to jump from shaping one material to creating with another, from 3D printing plastic to 3D modelling aluminium—and BoXZY allows you to fuse methods. You can employ 3D printing, laser cutting, and CNC milling in the very same build. Don’t stop with our attachments, though. We built BoXZY to hack. BoXZY’s simple, sturdy metal head allows you to attach any new effector you can build.”
The free software Autodesk 123D can be used to create 3D models and Fusion’s professional 3D modelling software is also free for use by most individuals. Students and other kinds of makers, have free access to many of Autodesk’s most powerful design tools. The programs include built-in tutorials to make sure you hit the ground running. In true maker tradition the BoXZY itself is also hackable.