Professional Maker

Free & open source 2D Inkjet Printers

Free and open source 3D printers have really taken off in the past year, most likely based upon the Reprap. All the press will have you believe that 3D printers will be in every home, just like we have 2D inkjet printers! I am still not 100% if that is a good thing or not, of which I will get into in another post at some point…

Yet, there isn’t a suitable open source 2D inkjet printer out there (well, at least that I could find). There seems to have been a few attempts as the video below highlights, but this hasn’t created any traction in creating a viable open source option to replace what HP, Canon or Epsom have to offer.

You can find the components here on thingiverse, to make your own.

This article is worth a read, on open sourcing the inkjet scam discussing the options of hacking the inkjet printers to circumvent the chips that force you to buy new cartridges, rather than re-filling them.

But hacking the chips doesn’t really solve the core issue, of that we don’t have an open source 2D inkjet printer alternative, that could ultimately provide us with a repairable, upgradable and in the long term a cheaper method of home printing. There is no doubt that open source 3D printers will further advance, along with the growth of open source hardware community and hopefully the public will take notice and action that these big corporations are just ripping us off.  So maybe we will have run, then learn to walk, by in the future taking few steps back, designing and creating a viable 2D print in the public domain.

UPDATE: The Light Bulb Conspiracy is great documentary that explains planned obsolescence, of which can be solved by the free culture community. Here is the featured youtube video about The Dirty Little secrets of Inkjet Printers.

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