The Mark One is the world's first 3D printer that can make objects out of carbon fibre

Yes, now you too can print in the wonder material used for everything from spaceships to supercars... to boy racers' spoilers

Carbon fibre? Isn't that just the stuff used for hideous bodykits on souped-up hot hatches?

Philistine. It's both lightweight and rigid, with a whole host of applications. Everything from boat hulls to Formula 1 cars to, yes, hideous bodykits for hot hatches.

And now I can 3D print the stuff?
Yup – the Mark One from Mark Forged is the world's first 3D printer that'll print in carbon fibre. It prints in continuous strands, using a unique print head to print parts that are 20 times stiffer and 5 times stronger than the ABS plastic used in most 3D printers.

Is that all it does? 
The Mark One isn't a one-trick pony; it can also print in fibreglass, nylon and the standard PLA plastic used by most 3D printers.

What can I print on it?
Whatever your heart desires. As long as it's no bigger than 12in x 6.25in x 6.25in. So, no, you can't print a hideous bodykit for your hot hatch. Unless it's a Hot Wheels hot hatch.

So it's going to be hugely expensive and aimed at 3D print shops, right?
Nothing of the sort. The Mark One will cost US$5000 (S$6400) when it goes on sale later in the year; you can pre-order it from February.

That's pricey, yes, but not outside the budget of the home enthusiast – and its aluminium unibody construction won't look out of place on the desk next to your iMac. It'll play nice with Mac OS 10.7 Lion +, Win XP+ and Linux (albeit with limited support for the latter), and features Wi-Fi, USB and SD card connectivity.

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[Mark Forged via Gizmodo]

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