Anker Make V6 Color Engine


All photo from anker kickstarter campaign and credit goes fully to them.

For those interested AnkerMake recently announced this add-on that they are coming out with along with their new 3D printer. I am pretty interested in how this will work out and could be another huge part in Anker entering the 3d market.

According to the Kickstarter page, the V6 can hold up to 6 different color filaments allowing you to have prints in up to six different colors.

The V6 also serves as a nice storage for six spools of filament and on the top appears to indicate temperature and some percentage that I believe is for humidity ( all filaments, some more than others, are susceptible to humidity). They also say that they heat the filaments to dry it seems that there is an interface on the 3D printer, the app, and possibly even the slicer. In the app and interfaces, it appears that it would show how much is remaining on each spool (this might be the bard graphs seen below)

To set up they say that it is three simple steps: changing the extruder connecting to the pinter and clicking print.

My main questions are how will they be able to switch colors without a purge block?
On the Kickstarter, they say that it does this by auto calculating the exact color and material lengths needed so there isn’t extra material to purge. I am interested in seeing how well this will work out and if the swap to the next color will be seamless. Is something curing the filament or does it have to be retracted still to prevent it still coming out the nozzle?

What does the custom-built M5 Extruder really entail?
I am guessing that it would allow all six different filaments to connect to the extruder to switch between which is pushed in and not.

Will people be able to buy Custom-Built M5 extruders on their own and implement this type of setup without the V6?

Feel free to share your thoughts, comments, and questions below. There is a chance some of this information is inaccurate because of how little information there is currently this is what I was able to put together and come up with. I am hoping that AnkerMake comes out with more information about this product coming up.

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I wonder how expensive this will be

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the answer is pretty expensive. basically a whole second printer’s worth in cost. which at full retail puts the printer plus the color engine over $1,000

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I did a little more digging through their comments the other day to see if there was any more information that I could gather.

More information about how the V6 will work and how it is assembled

The answer to the purge tower question (that lots including myself have been asking)

This makes some sense in my opinion but I am interested to see how it will work in practice as many companies have struggled with making this work as well. The switch will have to be quick to prevent the extra bit of already heated filament from basically leaking out of the nozzle in an unwanted place. The software portion of saying that it would be printed inside means that the little bit of transitional filament that is usually in a purge block would be moved to the inside like the infill of a 3D print. Would this mean that 3D prints that do not have any insides would not be able to change color? say for example if I printed a hollowed-out figure or some type of vase that has little to no infill would a purge pluck then be needed or would it just let a little color transition in the wrong place and hope it is minimal so the user doesn’t notice.

Information that they released about the NFC Tags that will come on the Anker Filament

This seems to be how the V6 will know what filaments are in there which will allow the users to switch colors mid-print or use a different spool of the same color when one runs out. I wonder if they will sell the tags separately to add to spools that people already own or if you have to take it off a spool of anker filament that you already own.

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What are the rough outside dimensions for the V6 color engine, and is there an amount of space required above it in order to open the door?

Also is there a set distance the color engine can be placed away from the M5?

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Sadly I don’t know that information at this time. If they release more information I will let you know as soon as possible. I do know that they said that the V6 will connect to the M5 through filament pipes and cables. Depending on the type of this it might be possible to place it in a variety or arrangements. Personally I wouldn’t want to put it too far from the 3d printer just to try to prevent issues of clogs jams or anything else.

I’d also love to know dimensions