The 10 things you need to know before buying a 3D printer:

Before buying a 3D printer it is important to ask some important questions. The following questions can help you examine your needs and examine the various products that exist on the market.

It is important Have a number of points written down for you:

Testing questions for the equipment seller:

1. Reliability of the seller – the most important !!!

Google or Facebook ratings can teach something. I happened to hear about buying reviews (like a gift roll or a significant discount).

If there are over 200 reviews and many are not in Hebrew and the service is in Israel – it is likely that they bought these reviews.

We recommend to Google the name of the company or the name of the business owner and the word claims.

For a general check for companies only – claims + active foreclosures (sometimes there can be financing for the car but if there is a lot it does mean something).

In over 90% you won’t find anything, but it will make it easier for you and reduce risk.

Another thing that conveys credibility, adaptation to your needs while taking an interest in the needs (as described in the second part, questions for yourself).

2. Is there a warranty on the printer? What responsibility and by whom?

You can get general information about what you are getting, a self-assembly kit does not always include a warranty.
You will light a red light in return as a full manufacturer’s warranty on all parts.
The manufacturer is from China, so the warranty is until the printer arrives at the customer’s home. From the point of view of the seller, it is legal to say such a sentence, but it is immoral and there is no professional ethics here.

If there is no manufacturing problem you have no warranty.

There is another thing that is important to understand its meaning:

Importer’s responsibility It is important to understand whether it is at the customer’s house or in the laboratory.

In the laboratory – it is important that it is within a reasonable driving distance.

Preferably in an area you visit occasionally.

Warranty at the customer’s home usually for more expensive products and not for entry-level products.

Of course it is the best and indeed the most expensive.

In some products there are consumables in most cases there is no warranty for consumables. (mainly in liquid printers)

3. Is the printer available when buying a 3D printer?

Red light: Delivery within 45 business days = Dropshiping and at the same time listed in stock with V
Shipping by sea takes about 30 business days, obviously this is a deception.

Presell – Presale is a common thing that sometimes you get a discounted price but the delivery is long.

It is always better to call before buying a 3D printer so you are 100% sure.

4. Is it possible to get instruction on the printer?

Most likely we will receive an additional fee separately for the instruction on the printer but
If there is no possibility of training, it pretty much turns on a red light.
It is important not to fall for a business that sells other equipment and has no idea about 3D printing, because the truth is that it is not a 2D printer that you just press Print, there is a lot of depth.

Expensive products usually have one-on-one training, for example Mega 8K V2 .

In some products, when you buy a 3D printer, you get a digital course

5. To find out that the details match the website – warranty price, etc.:

Until you’ve tested, you can’t know.
Price on the website is cheap for a 3D printer (and charging in a higher operation) and an attempt to get the seller of the equipment without success (until you call from another number and only then make a cancellation).

Very few times something like this can happen, but we heard.

Before buying a 3D printer, it’s important to make sure it’s not dropshipping, there are very few, but there are.

6. Question to the seller: I have no experience with a 3D printer. Is it easy to print? (even if you have experience).

Red light: very easy at the push of a button level or forget it.
The usual answers – there are free tutorials on Youtube, you can order a tutorial for an additional fee or require an initial investment of time, etc.

It is important for me to point out that we do not think that most equipment sellers are like that, there are good ones and there are clowns. The purpose of this article is to overwhelm the less good ones and give you better tools to understand what you are facing before purchasing a 3D printer.
Even the good ones have more and less and sometimes there are also clowns in different degrees, in each field there are different levels of service providers.

Questions for yourself:

1. What type of print do I want to print on the printer?

There is a clear distinction between an industrial product with a relatively high quality finish and household products. For industrial products: strong materials or heat-resistant material are often used.

If I have an importance for a very high level of finish it may be that printing with DLP or MSLA technology is preferable (liquid printing).
On the other hand, for printing household products that do not require a very high finish, PLA plastic, which is characterized by an easier ability to work, does not require special properties.
In addition, the PLA material is more “forgiving” in cases of slight differences in temperature and ease of printing.

That’s why it’s important before buying a 3D printer to understand whether it’s FFF/FDM (wire printing) or MSLA/DLP liquid printing?

2. What is the printing area that meets my needs

A 3D printer is offered with different and varied printing areas, the areas that “shelf” printers have are from 200x200x200 mm to 500x500x500 mm
Please note, too small an area will be very challenging and limit the possibilities. Too large an area will not be effective for 3D because the printing time will be very long (unless you increase the diameter of the nozzle that hits exactly).

3. What are the types of materials I would like to print

Buying a 3D printer without bottom heating allows printing in 2 different types of materials: PLA and TPU (flexible material) where TPU requires a temperature of about 220 degrees (when there is no bottom heating). Most of the most basic printers have the ability to print with these 2 types of materials.

For TPU, an extruder is required with a small space between the feeder gear and the input of the material if it is not usually possible to print an adapter.

In most cases printing is slower on TPU about half the speed of a printer

ABS – a material that allows obtaining a high level of finish, usually requires a temperature of 245 degrees and 100 degrees in the lower heating body.

PC- Polycarbonate which is a very strong and hard material but requires very high temperatures of 240-280 degrees and 120-130 degrees in a lower heating body.

PVA- Printing result is not impressive in general but the material has a special property that it dissolves in water, take this into account in your design.

For example, if I have a double head (with input of 2 materials) you can make the supports for the part with PVA and the rest of the printing with regular material (PLA or ABS) and at the end of printing put the part in an ultrasonic chamber with light heating and thus remains with a product with excellent finish , As opposed to cutting with a Japanese knife / scraper and rubbing with sandpaper of the supports that usually leave marks.

3. What is the print speed

Print speed is determined by the nozzle diameter, the printer is offered with a diameter of 0.4 mm, a small diameter such as 0.2 mm will significantly improve the accuracy in the small details but will extend the printing time up to almost 4 times. A diameter of 0.8mm will do the exact opposite operation, more speed, but no doubt we will see the connecting stripes of the print between layers.

There are printers that are indeed faster such as the Bambulab Carbon X1 and the price accordingly.

4. What number of colors and heads is required

It is important to understand the difference between a double head and the number of color feeds!
There are a number of disadvantages to a double head:

  • Loss of work space (due to the distances between the nozzles)
  • A height difference on the Z axis will make coping very difficult
  • A slight deviation in the X-axis or Y-axis will also make printing very difficult
  • ooze shield which will require the construction of a different program with the execution of Shield for the entire product.

Regarding several colors, Bambulab’s AMS tune works well, for example: Bambu Lab X1-Carbon Combo .

Because it is simpler to deal with multiple colors programmatically in Slicer.

However, other models require a deeper understanding of slicer design, planning and operation.

single head:

Replacements can only be made at a different height on the Z axis so it is not possible to change the color on the same line.

But requires a lot of work and is not always convenient.

When buying a first 3D printer, a single head is recommended.

We hope this article on the topic – questions before buying a 3D printer helped you.

You can get a digital training in Serf for the Chitubox software free of charge

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