What is the Current State of 3D Printing?

3D printing is a strong and vibrant niche of the DIY community and its fortunes are rising each and every day with new printers being released every year. Discerning 3D artists, who make a point of creating everything themselves from scratch, often prefer the 3D printing experience, as they find it to be more rewarding and adaptive than outright buying the finished product.

For this reason, it is still a strong player in the DIY community. Today, we’re going to share more interesting and informative facts about the current state of 3D printing…

How Does 3D printing Compare?

We’ve already touched on the fact that in-the-know 3D artists and DIYers tend to prefer the 3D printing experience. Now, let’s delve a little deeper…

3D artists have good reason for preferring to print their models on their own 3D printers, instead of a hiring  manufacturing company. They like the fact that they are able to print out prototypes whenever they want, rather than being stuck with the waiting times of a manufacturing company. As well, they find that printing their own models provide superior opportunities for tinkering and DIY projects.

These primary benefits just scratch the surface. Other benefits of buying and using a 3D printer include fast design and production, cost effective ways of prototyping, takes up very little space and many different materials to choose from. Overall, most 3D artists and DIYers find that the 3D printing experience be fun and exciting.

3D printers may be tweaked with new components and parts in order to keep them fresh and modern. This is a real advantage since you can upgrade your printer instead of buying a new one.

As well, as long as you own the right hardware, you’ll probably find that your 3D printer will function very well.

Is Resin Printing Better Than Filament Printing?

Resin printing is a very strong contender in the printing industry. It garners big sales. People really enjoy printing on resin printers due to the ability to make very small and detailed prints, such as miniatures for board games, and this trend shows no sign of slowing down. Clearly, people do enjoy resin printers.

In terms of how it compares to filament printers, resin printers are typically a more frustrating experience. It requires a lot more post processing work on the finished product.

In contrast, a 3D model printed on a filament printer is ready to be used as soon as the printer has finished.

Getting Started With 3D printing

Naturally, 3D printing requires some kind of 3D printer. However, there are tons of printers out there. It is hard to give advice on which printer to buy as it all depends on speed, size and cost. Have a look at our guide for getting started with 3D printers.

A computer with a slicer software installed is needed for converting 3D models into files the printer can read, called gcode.

For transferring the files from your computer to the printer, an SD card is usually required.

Pros and Cons of 3D printing

The key pros of 3D printing are the ability to print your own prototypes which cost less than going to a manufacturer and ability to create custom replacement parts. However, 3D printing has a few cons as well, and these include the need to invest in hardware, long print times, “failed prints” (this is very common when using 3D printers, prints can fail for a variety of reasons.), the risk of a fire hazzard and hard to print large volumes.

It’s patently clear that the pros are outweighing the cons. People love 3D printing and they embrace its positives wholeheartedly and don’t spend too much time focusing on the negatives.

Costs of 3D printing

Decent 3D printers usually cost between two hundred and five hundred US dollars. These printers are usually suited for home use and prototyping. So, the initial cost of 3D printers may be relatively high. However, once it’s set up, the savings will begin. You’ll pay less for prototypes than you would if you hired a manufacturing company. For this reason, a good 3D printer may pay for itself over time.

The cost of filament, which is the plastic you use in 3D printers, usually ranges from twenty dollars to a hundred dollars. There are different price points, so it’s possible to find deals on filaments

Is 3D printing Right for You?

Hopefully, our detailed guide has provided you with some useful facts about the current state of 3D printing. If you’re creative and really into 3D modeling, and want more control over your prototyping experience, we do recommend 3D printing. When you have the right hardware in place, you’ll find that it offers reliable prints which is, really, 3D printing at its very best!

Also, since it’s so easy to download new free models from Thingieverse and other reputable 3D modeling websites such as Sketchfab you’ll find that you have a world of printing possibilities at your fingertips even if you are not an experienced 3D artist.

3D printing is not for everyone. It requires a lot of patience and time. If you’re in this category, or want to be, then it is probably right for you.

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