Switching Between Subtractive and Additive Manufacturing in ZMorph VX

Switching Between Subtractive and Additive Manufacturing in ZMorph VX

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How CNC and 3D Printing are Possible Using a Single Machine?

It’s a title of our article from 2017 where we presented how we managed to make a high-quality 3D printer that can be used for precise CNC operations.

The short answer is: we use high-quality materials, a double-belt drive reinforced with steel rods, and a sturdy frame that can withstand CNC milling, and at the same time be very precise to enable 3D printing. On the top of that, ZMorph VX is equipped with an encoder-based error correction system called Closed Loop System.

If you want to learn more about features that make ZMorph VX a truly multitool desktop machine, check out the full article by Marcin Traczyk.


ZMorph Toolheads

With the all-in-one ZMorph VX it’s all about the interchangeable toolheads and worktables. Currently, we offer three toolheads for 3D printing, two for subtractive manufacturing, and an experimental toolhead for printing with dense materials. Here’s the list of ZMorph toolheads:

  • Single Plastic Extruder 1.75 mm
  • Single Plastic Extruder 3.00 mm
  • Dual PRO Extruder
  • CNC PRO Milling Toolhead
  • Laser PRO Toolhead
  • Thick Paste Extruder

Mounting the Dual Extruder on ZMorph VX.

Each toolhead is designed in a way that allows easy switching between workflows. Don’t forget to change the worktable, too. You want to use the heated bed for 3D printing, and the aluminum worktable for CNC operations.

How to Switch from 3D Printing to CNC Milling in ZMorph VX?

Switching from 3D printing to other methods of fabrication is really easy. On the top of that you don’t need any extra software as Voxelizer is perfectly capable of preparing files for 3D printing, laser engraving, and CNC milling.

ZMorph Toolheads are installed on the X-carriage with hooks and a screw. We made extra effort so the toolhead is easy to mount but at the same time is safe and sturdy. This way you need only a few quick steps to change the method of fabrication on ZMorph VX, and the machine is ready to perform both precise CNC operations and high-quality 3D printing.

Here’s a short video on how to change the tool in the ZMorph VX All-in-One 3D Printer. Make sure that you attach proper cables as well.

Same goes with the workbed. The heated table for 3D printing and CNC worktable are mounted to solid rails that slide with utmost precision along the Y-axis. There’s only one hook you need to pull to remove the table plus an extra cable that connects the heated bed for 3D printing to the machine.

ZMorph VX CNC worktable.

How to quickly change fabrication methods in #ZMorphVX


Voxelizer: The All-In-One Software

What may be a concern is the choice of the slicing software. Usually you need a different digital tool to prepare files for CNC and 3D printing. That is why the multitool machine ships with a dedicated software - Voxelizer.

The workflow is very simple. At the beginning you choose the machine and if it’s the ZMorph Multitool 3D Printer next you’ll have to choose which toolhead you’re using. You’ll see different settings after your choice. This way you don’t have to worry about any extra steps - ZMorph offers a complete ecosystem with a machine, dedicated software, and branded materials to ensure top quality and performance.

Voxelizer. Choosing toolhead screen.

ZMorph VX Multitool Applications

It’s only natural that with three methods of fabrication the ZMorph machines are capable of so much more than a regular desktop 3D printer. You can think big with the device. That is why we prepared a list of our ideas on how to put ZMorph VX into practice.

Thanks to the Laser PRO Toolhead you can create fully working PCB units that you can add to a 3D printed model and therefore create functional prototypes or even start a low volume manufacture. The CNC unit allows you to turn your 3D printed mockups into more durable models for injection molding. Use the Dual PRO Extruder to take advantage of dissolvable materials such as PVA or HIPS. The possibilities are endless.

Laser etching PCB with ZMorph VX.