When 3D Printing Gets Cheaper

If it's something you watch or hear or read, this is the general grab-bag for it.

When 3D Printing Gets Cheaper

Postby Volair » Thu Jul 02, 2009 9:49 pm

Image

The MakerBot has been running pretty well lately. At $750 the kits still aren't free, but they sure are cheaper than those 30k+ bruisers mainstream industry is selling...
User avatar
Volair
Kumquat Class

  Offline
 
Posts: 167
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2008 1:31 pm
Location: Hillsbrad, OR

Re: When 3D Printing Gets Cheaper

Postby Pharmakeus Ubik » Sat Jul 18, 2009 11:48 pm

Least they could do is clean off the flash. Pretty cool stuff though. The service I use is Shapeways.
A man without god is just like a fish, without a bycicle
User avatar
Pharmakeus Ubik
Kumquat Class

  Offline
 
Posts: 166
Joined: Thu May 08, 2008 5:46 pm
Location: Crossing the land of Bjornsstrand, the land of dark forces, on the way to North Malden.

Re: When 3D Printing Gets Cheaper

Postby RaharuAharu » Sun Jul 19, 2009 4:40 am

Hmmm

How much would it cost me, do you think to get or build my own 3d printer?

Is 750$ the cheapest?

I must confess my main use for it would me gaming related, printing out terrain and figures
for my current table tops RPGs.

How much of another makerbot can your makerbot make?
Hello! *~( ! !)>
Alien Parachronism
Image
User avatar
RaharuAharu
1000 Post Forum Master!

  Offline
 
Posts: 1099
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2008 2:09 am

Re: When 3D Printing Gets Cheaper

Postby Volair » Sun Jul 19, 2009 10:59 am

Pharmakeus Ubik wrote:Least they could do is clean off the flash. Pretty cool stuff though. The service I use is Shapeways.


Well, bear in mind this is just me, running my own machine, and not the pros back at MakerBot Industries in Manhattan. I tend to get lazy about flash. :exasperated: Shapeways is a great service, and their models will come out better than even the most well-tuned MakerBot prints. They're also about ten times more expensive by weight. MakerBot printing is not for people trying to beat Shapeways on quality-- it's for people who want to experiment with their own machine and do designs on the fly, at a cost-per-print low enough to just toss failed versions in the recycle bin.

Some better examples of cleaned-up prints can be found here: http://www.thingiverse.com/made-things

RaharuAharu wrote:Hmmm

How much would it cost me, do you think to get or build my own 3d printer?

Is 750$ the cheapest?


$750 is the bottom floor of the present 3D printer costs, and is an open-source hardware kit, meaning you'll have to do some DIY-ing to get it up and running. The new versions of the kit come with pre-assembled boards, but I'd still recommend being able to do a bit of soldering and computer software wrangling. MakerBots aren't nearly as user friendly as the professional machines, but they don't cost $25,000 either.

EDIT: Building your own RepRap can be just slightly cheaper (~$500) if you can source the parts successfully, which is often a major, major hassle. Believe me, there's a reason the introduction of the MakerBot has exploded the number of users of 3D printing despite being more expensive than cobbling together a RepRap.

MakerBot Industries does sell fully-assembled machines, but they've made the price of that very high ($2,500) more so they won't have to do it often than as an indicator of value. I think a skilled technician might be able to make a buck or two ordering MakerBots and undercutting this figure by a grand or so...

The cost of build material is also drastically reduced by a factor of ten to about three cents per cubic centimeter, making the finished parts disposable in cost but sturdy enough to withstand say, stepping on them accidentally. In shoes.

I must confess my main use for it would me gaming related, printing out terrain and figures
for my current table tops RPGs.


The print resolution on the MakerBot is up to the task of printing out terrain (in 10cm x 10cm chunks) and it can definitely create figurines, although there are some limitations on the resolution that may be relevant. Again, Shapeways has higher resolution and print quality, and doesn't require a large initial investment in time and money.

Of course I've done some modeling for RPG usage already, and I hope that MakerBots get used for this a lot in the future. One great thing about running a MakerBot is that once you've got it well tuned, you can set it to work creating a large number of something with fairly minimal supervision. Warhammer-like games might really benefit from the low cost-per-figure...

How much of another makerbot can your makerbot make?


The MakerBot can print out the full set of RepRap parts, but it can only print the small parts that go into making it: parts of the plastruder, parts of the base, pulleys, etcetera. MakerBot Industries is planning on gradually increasing this figure by changing the design over time to accommodate more printed parts.

The circuit boards, stepper motors, and belts remain stubbornly unprintable for the time being, so even the RepRap designs represent a fair bit of bought stuff. However, I take some heart in the fact that the circuits are getting cheaper, and the parts more standardized. Over time, I think 3D printing is going to get even cheaper, and better. But for now, I'm pretty happy with my MakerBot.
User avatar
Volair
Kumquat Class

  Offline
 
Posts: 167
Joined: Sun Jan 20, 2008 1:31 pm
Location: Hillsbrad, OR

Re: When 3D Printing Gets Cheaper

Postby Monocheres » Sun Jul 19, 2009 11:13 am

RaharuAharu wrote:How much of another makerbot can your makerbot make?


And thus the seed of the Gray-Goo Holocaust has been planted. ;-)
---
(formerly known as Synetos Protos ... but Monocheres was an even cooler character)
User avatar
Monocheres
Watermelon Graduate

  Offline
 
Posts: 922
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2008 8:57 am
Location: Penny Delta, Kingdom of the Moirolatres


Return to Media

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests