How To Easily Find A Great 3D Printer For Your Needs

by Kelvin
3d принтера

A few years ago, 3D printers were only used in industry. They were very expensive to acquire and required a lot of technical skill to operate. Over the years, 3D printers have become commonplace in the home. Today, you can get a great, user-friendly printer for under $ 500.

That being said, you still need to understand these printers in order to make the right purchasing decision. Here’s what to consider:

3d printer


1. What are your goals?

Choosing the perfect 3D printer is much easier if you know what you want to use it for. Do you just want to create small household items or are you hoping to build complex structures for research and scientific purposes?

It is also helpful to know the size of the models you want to create. As noted by the Print Atoms Report experts, the expected build volume will directly determine the size and even the type of printer used. Write down your goals and find the perfect printer for your unique needs. You can also ask the 3D printing community for help.

2. Type of 3D printer

3D printers use different technologies to produce models. As such, the type and quality of the models you create will largely depend on the specific type of printer you choose.

There are three common types of printers currently on the market:

a. Fused deposition model (FDM)

FDM printers are very popular. They work by heating the filament and shaping it one layer at a time.

The FDM printer can be Cartesian, Delta or Polar. It is highly recommended to use FDM Cartesian printers as they provide more control and better results.

b. Stereolithography (SLA)

SLA printers harden and harden the resin to create the model. This is done by focusing a beam of ultraviolet light on different parts of the resin.

SLA printer technology is very precise, therefore it creates smooth and high-quality structures.

c. Selective Laser Sintering (SLS)

SLS printers work the same as SLA printers, but they use lasers instead of UV rays and powder instead of resin.

SLS is a great option for creating complex industrial models.

3. Print materials

Most 3D printers use polylactic acid (PLA) and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS).

PLA is a plastic derived from plants. A good option for beginners. It is usually used to create simple household materials. PLA models are biodegradable, making them great for the environment. It also comes in a translucent and solid color, and also cools down quite quickly. On the other hand, plastic has a very low melting point, so it can only be used in home models.

ABS is stronger than PLA, which means it can be used to create durable outdoor structures. The trade-off is that this material takes a long time to cool down. This exposes the model to deformation problems. ABS also emits a lot of smoke. It must be used in a well ventilated area.

Please note that some printers only use one type of media, so consider your current and future needs.

If your printer uses liquid resins, you can choose between standard and medical resins. The standard resin is used for small prototypes, while the other two are used in professional fields to create engineering models and medical devices such as hearing aids.

4. Software for 3D printing

3D Printing Software

You will need software for the computer you use to print and the 3D printer itself. On the computer side, make sure the software, also known as a slicer, provides all the capabilities you need. It’s also vital to get user-friendly software. The most common 3D printing computer programs are Slic3r and Cura.

Meanwhile, Marlin is the most popular 3D printer firmware. It has a huge community that offers great support and usage tips.

5. Security features

Make sure the printer you are purchasing has the necessary safety measures to protect it from smoke, heat, and other factors. Dangers. If you make dishes, use food grade materials and keep the printer clean. It is also very important to cover the models with a coating of porous surfaces.

6. Print speed and resolution

Print speed and resolution affect the quality of your models. Overly fast printers get the job done pretty quickly, but the final product may not be as detailed as you’d like. Likewise, a high resolution printer takes a long time to print, but will help you get the details as accurate as possible.

7. Price

FDM printers are the most affordable. They are great when you are 3D printing as a hobby and not too keen on getting the highest quality products. The rest of the options are slightly more expensive, but offer better quality and functionality.

Hopefully the guide above has given you all the gems you need to buy a professional grade 3D printer. Feel free to consult the online 3D printing community if you’re feeling overwhelmed.