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Home 3D printer for under $500 excites Kickstarter

The dream of having an affordable, easy-to-use home 3D printer may come true in the form of the Buccaneer Kickstarter project.

Buccaneer printer
The Buccaneer also looks pretty slick.

One of the lures of a 3D printer is the ability to create and get a result that is so tactile. Your design dreams become real objects. If only the price weren't so high.

A lot of people are waiting for a 3D printer that is easy to use and doesn't cost much more than a regular printer. The Buccaneer from Pirate3D on Kickstarter is looking to deliver on both those fronts.

The Buccaneer goes all-in with an Apple-style aesthetic. It's the sort of printer you won't hide under your desk. The plastic printing material comes spooled in cartridges, which are placed into the top of the machine. The printing happens inside the cube. A plate in the bottom lowers to access the object once it's done.

The software that comes with the machine is designed to be as simple as possible. You can hook the Buccaneer up to a PC or mobile device, allowing you to create your own designs or use designs from Pirate3D's store.

Pirate3D already has working prototypes. The Kickstarter fundraising is geared to help move the development schedule along and get the machine into production. A $447 pledge includes a $50 shipping charge and gets you a Buccaneer along with five extra cartridges of print material. Additional cartridges will sell for $12.

At such a low price, a lot of people will feel like the Buccaneer is worth a shot. So far, 1,437 Kickstarter backers have rocketed the device to $551,221 in funding with 25 days left, blowing away the original $100,000 goal. Sounds like everyone is ready for a home 3D printing solution and the Buccaneer is hitting all the sweet spots to make it happen.