When you think about a 3D printer, probably what crosses your mind is an appliance for the office, or a manufacturing firm, nothing more. While you are very correct on both counts, this machine is very useful for your home too. Most of the printing we are familiar with is the two-dimensional printing that we see on paper and other surfaces. 3D printed items have height, width and breadth, thus lending them that elusive real-life aesthetic. Every day and with newer technology, interesting items are added to the list of what can be printed using these printers: from shoes to bicycles, prosthetics, dresses, sculptures, houses and even guns.
Besides these, there are so many fun items and bespoke works of art you can come with if you have the right printer. They are a gold mine for interior décor enthusiasts who can now transfer their unique ideas right from their minds to a machine that will produce their preferred items. These printers have also shifted the course of business and caused a shift in the supply chains, as items that previously needed manpower, and different raw materials can now be done in one’s backyard. Pretty soon, 3D printers might just become a necessity in every household as more and more people awaken to their abilities to simplify life.
Find your 3D printer in the UK
Because this is a fairly new concept to most people, you might not be able to simply walk into a store and pick out a 3D printer UK has to offer and leave. At Dibbsto 3D printers UK, you are able to make an informed decision based on your needs and detailed characteristics of the printers you will find here. There is so much to consider in order to settle for one that will not turn out to be a great disappointment and a waste of your time and money. The top consideration is, of course, the purpose. Different 3D printers are built for different uses. You must be sure what you want to do with it, whether you want to use it for commercial purposes or just as a hobby back at home. The purpose majorly determines other important factors in choosing the right one like the cost, quality, capability and the speed of printing.
3D printing process
While the functionality of different printers varies, most follow these basic steps:
- Create a 3D model of the item you want to print using a modelling application.
- Save it as Computer-Aided Design
- Slice the design that is then fed to the printer
- The printer converts the 2D slices into a 3D object.
Great 3D printer price in the UK
3D printer price is a key consideration in picking the right printer. The prices depend greatly on the printing technology that the 3D printer uses. SLA, Digital Light Processing, Fused Deposition Modelling and Selective Laser Sintering are some of the most common printing technology used in 3D printing. But there are plenty of options for you, and you only have to settle to the one closest to what you require. The high-end ones will obviously cost more, but you can get a decent but cheap 3D printer UK if you know where to look.
Stereolithographic Technology (SLA)
This technology combines great speed, precision and accuracy to make prototypes for medical and engineering industries. 3D printers that use this technology include XYZprinting Nobel 1.0 SLA 3D Printer and Form 1 SLA 3D Printer.
Digital Light Processing (DLP)
This is a pioneer technology that is quite similar to SLA, delivers faster speeds and high-detail due to its mode of exposure to light. It is also economical and waste-conscious. Some good examples are Peopoly Phenom and Formlabs Form 3.
Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM)
This technology is the manufacturer’s best friend, what with its ability to deliver functional prototypes with great detail, strength, and they are also relatively cheap. They are also a great choice for people who want to get into 3D printing as a hobby. The most common types are Cartesian FDM, Delta FDM, FDM/Robotic Arms and Polar Printers.
Selective Laser Sintering (SLS)
It is very similar to SLA, the main difference being the materials used. While liquid resin is the key material for SLA, SLS mostly makes use of powdered materials. Some printers that fall in this category are
Just be sure to not spend too much on 3D printer models that you will hardly use when you could get a budget 3D printer instead. At the same time, take care not to buy a cheap 3D printer which will not be able to effectively carry out the tasks it is meant for. The 3D printer price should match the task for which it is meant.
Note that the cost does not stop at the printer itself, even if you bought the best budget 3D printer, there are still 3D printing materials to consider. These are recurring costs that you have to live with for as long as you are still interested in 3D printing. Depending on the complexity of the items you have in mind, most materials like epoxy resin, nylon, ABS, Polylactic Acid (PLA) are relatively easy to come by. If you want fancy 3D printing designs, there are a lot of websites from which you can download them.
Build your own
Instead of buying a ready-made printer, some people prefer to build their own. It is a very fulfilling process for the hands-on, and cheaper too. All you need to do is buy a 3D printer kit and assemble the parts. There are plenty of tutorials to help you get through building your own, and online communities will also come in handy with their tried and true hacks. You can also borrow tips on how to use the printer and the best software for your type of printer.
When you are not using it for your own individual purposes, you can take orders from other people or sell your designs to make some money on the side. 3D printers are no longer luxury items that one only gets when they want something to splurge on. Buying one for home use will save you money which you would have otherwise spent on stands, holders, décor and so many other items on demand.
Many people have taken to using their printers to make the much-needed Personal Protective Equipment because not only are they not available in most locales, but it is becoming increasingly difficult to leave the house and get them. This is just a tip of the iceberg of how much more useful a 3D printer can be. If you have a great idea of an item, but no shop seems to get it right, you can make whatever it is on your own. It is the perfect conduit for creativity and the most accessible way of sorting out life’s smallest annoyances.
In light of all these considerations, what does the best 3D printer look like? The truth is, there is no one-size-fits-all recommendation as it all depends on your budget, the designs you intend to print and whether you want your buy one or build your own. But the good news is, they are no longer as expensive as they used to be and they are a great idea for passing the time.