3D printing technology has been around for several decades, but it is only in recent years that the technology has become affordable for consumers. If you're thinking about buying a 3D printer, there are a few things you should consider before making your purchase.
This guide will help you choose the right 3D printer for your needs.
Why you need a 3D printer
As a consumer, investing in a 3D printer could prove to be incredibly beneficial. Not only can it expand the boundaries of creativity, enabling individuals to create customized models, décor and more – it can also reduce the need for manufacturers.
By having the ability to produce items using these printers instead of buying them, not only do you save money but you also lessen your consumption of resources.
The versatility of 3D printing gives users total control as they are able to experiment without limitation while being able to produce tangible objects that they can use or share with others.
Thus, if you are looking for a tool that will provide endless opportunities while reducing costs and combating consumerism then 3D printing may be the right choice.
How to choose the right 3D printer for your needs
When deciding on a 3D printer, it is important to consider the printing materials available, your specific printing needs, and also your budget. Taking into consideration what type of 3D objects you plan to print, along with their size and complexity, will help determine the right technology for you.
Different types of printers are better suited for different types of printing material. Hobbyist 3D printers can be more cost-effective than industrial models but will require different filament than those used in professional settings.
Making sure that the chosen printer is compatible with your preferred filament can save time, money and frustration later down the line. It's also important to think about the heating mechanisms used in each printer and research whether they match up with safety requirements or any other additional needs specified by personal or business use.
Researching various features ahead of time can help save energy and resources when making such a significant purchase decision.
What kind of materials can be printed with a 3D printer
Three-dimensional (3D) printing is an innovative, rapidly expanding manufacturing technology that can produce high-quality parts in a variety of materials.
The type of material available for 3D printing varies depending on the technology used, with options ranging from plastics and rubbers to composites, metals and even ceramics.
Plastics such as ABS and PLA are widely used due to their cost-effectiveness and ease of processing. Thermoplastics such as nylon and polycarbonate are also popular choices, while rubber-based materials like thermoplastic elastomers can provide flexibility and higher impact resistance than other types of 3D printed plastic.
Metal alloys nearly akin to those found in injection molding machines are available for production of end use components with strength rivaling traditional machining.
Composites such as carbon fiber reinforced polymers further extend the range of application by combining physical characteristics of both materials into one 3D printable hybrid material.
Ceramics offer another material option for research focused applications such as biocompatibles or insulators. Utilizing advanced software which enables customization and automation, 3D printing can greatly simplify production processes while providing capabilities impossible through traditional production methods.
The benefits of owning a 3D printer
Owning a 3D printer is becoming increasingly popular and has numerous advantages.
Perhaps the most obvious benefit is that you can easily create things you'd normally have to pay for or wait for delivery on. From spare machine parts to props, toys, household accessories and more - your 3D printer can produce nearly any item at fast speeds with just a few clicks on the computer.
You even have the ability to customize items you design from materials of varying densities and colors. And though it may seem intimidating, learning how to operate and maintain a 3D printer doesn't take much effort - in-depth tutorials and help forums exist for all skill levels.
The convenience and flexibility of being able to create whatever you need whenever you want are difficult advantages to overlook - making this piece of technology an invaluable tool for both practical and creative purposes.
How to get started with 3D printing
3D printing is an exciting and versatile technology that can be used to create a variety of three-dimensional objects.
To get started with 3D printing, research a reliable 3D printer, determine your budget, select the materials you'd like to use, design the object you would like to print and finally acquire or develop your own slicing software to prepare your file for printing.
Once you have all the pieces in place, review the manual of your printer and begin the printing process. With this easily-achievable set up, you can open yourself up to endless possibilities in 3D printing.
Whether you are a business or an individual, there are many reasons to invest in a 3D printer. They are versatile machines that can print a wide variety of materials, making them perfect for both personal and professional use.
With the right printer and the proper know-how, you can create anything from prosthetic body parts to action figures to home décor.
And if you’re just starting out with 3D printing, don’t worry – we have all the information you need to get started. Click below to see our top pick for the best 3D printer for kids and beginners. Thanks for reading!