Recommendations on 3D Printers?

3dprinter

#1

Hi…Good News…I get a 3D printer for Christmas…Now I need some help picking one?

Anyone have one that they really like or have information that might help me?

My budget is up to $1k…But I don’t HAVE to spend that much.

Cheers…


#2

I had never used a 3D Printer before and ended up getting a Prusa i3 MK3 and have had some very good success with it so far. It took about two prints to get the hang of things but I have not had much trouble since with it. While looking at them originally I noticed that a lot of the lower end/cheap ones require a bit more to get the hang of things so that is why I chose the MK3.


#3

Ohhh, jealous!

I ordered the Cubibot last February. I’m waiting somewhat patiently!


#4

I don’t have a wide experience, but my current recommendation is the Prusa i3 MK3 (https://shop.prusa3d.com/en/3d-printers/180-original-prusa-i3-mk3-kit.html#) - it works great, large bed size, and has been mostly flawless with its prints. It also does a wide variety of materials if you are the sort that wants that.

Highly recommend the kit version - with all 3D printers, you will end up taking it apart at some point to fix something, you may as well know how it went together and Prusa’s instructions for building are fantastic.


#5

I will second the kit recommendation. It comes with a very detailed book to walk you though the process. It comes in handy to know exactly how things go together.


#6

I’ll join others who recommend the Prusa i3 MK3. It’s the fifth 3D printer I’ve owned, and easily the best: great-looking prints, high print success rate and flexible filament handling. Prusa also provides Slic3r, a free software slicer optimized for its printers.


#7

I have two Prusa units and I do not suggest it unless you are willing to tinker. I have had almost every cable to the hot end assembly break due to wear and my MK3 isn’t even a year old. I finally sat down and designed my own cable management, and guess what, no more breaking. Now the breaks happen at the electronics enclosure.
When the bed power cables caught fire due to poor factory assembly on my MK2, Prusa told me to fix it on my own, no offer to send new cables.
The fancy laser filament sensor isn’t reliable because the sensor they use is not calibrated for the variety of colors and textures used in filament, but for steel. I wasted almost a kilogram of filament trying to troubleshoot the printer before I just disconnected the filament sensor.
The MK3 hot end fan isn’t strong enough to keep the hot end cool for higher temp filaments. Prusa has admitted this and has issued a fancy new design to increase the airflow. I just installed it last weekend and haven’t been able to test it, but I will soon.
If you find all the problems with their design and repair them, either with your own designs or with what others have come up with, it can be a decent printer. I use mine only for things that won’t fit on my Robox units since they are so hard to work on and seem to break so often.
Especially now that I don’t do as much printing I almost regret purchasing the MK3; it just seems to take up space right now.


#8

Coming in at your threshold is the Craftbot. I have two and I’ve been using them for several years without any issues. I would highly recommend this 3D printer.

I noticed Amazon has free prime shipping.


#9

Another recommendation for the Prusa mk3. It is my second Prusa, and I built it from the kit. Took about 8 hours. I’ve had many other printers and also have a Creality Cr-10s, which I don’t recommend. Prusa is the best printer under $1k. If you want something better at a higher price point and good support I’d say a Lulzbot Taz 6.

Good thread on Reddit here with more info.

Purchase Advice Megathread: What To Buy, Who To Buy It From, And More, In December 2018.


#10

As others have said… Prusa i3 MK3.

The best reference for filament materials I’ve found is on the MatterHackers web site. And their filament is top notch, too. In fact, I have found the knowledge base at matter hackers to be valuable enough that I generally just order consumables from them, even if it is a few % higher priced than others; happy to support the info!


#11

I have a Prusa MK2 and it is very reliable. The kit assembly was a great learning experience for getting to know the printer well. There will come a time when you will want to do some mods, repairs or upgrades. Saves some money.

I can empathize with @ben1 regarding his experience with his Prusas. I did have to replace the thermistor in bed. They were quick enough to ship me a new part. Support has been good. I also had to get new cables for the bed itself since they faulted fairly quickly. Cable management is an issue. If you get the kit, think through the cable management to limit pinch and hinge points. I didn’t quite understand these issues and have since worked on the cables to keep them working well.

I really like the Prusa version of Slic3r. Being able to slice models easily without any previous knowledge was really important. I have worked with Cura since then for my Creality CR10S, but ended up using Slic3r. This is a pretty important part of the whole operation. Helpful for new users to get into an ecosystem that is fairly stable and has lots of support.

I am happy to have the Creality. I use to when I have to print stuff that doesn’t have to have tight tolerances on smaller features of a model. I need to do some work on the Creality to tighten it up a bit. A couple issues are going on with my bottom layers. I’m sure I could improve my prints, but I just haven’t taken the time to troubleshoot it much.

I use Maker Geeks PLA almost exclusively. It prints at a higher temp than others but is very consistent. Since the factory is only two hours away, it’s pretty easy for shipping.


#12

I’ll add that their online steps are basically the same as the book but allow for comments from other builders - before starting any step I checked the comments and if there were more than a few, I read them all before doing the step since that usually meant that the step was not simple and often there were tips in the comments…


#13

I also recommend the Prusa i3 MK3 for your budget.


#14

I had one Makerbot Replicator and sold it as I could not get good quality prints.
Tried again years later with a Makerbot Mini, pretty much the same result.

I now have 4 Prusa I3 mk2 printers and I love them. They do require some occasional tinkering, but there is a huge community and online support for them.


#15

I will also recommend a Prusa Mk3.
I loved assembling the Kit, and this is one of the quietest printers I have owned.
Their printers are well supported and they are very well respected in the 3D printing community.


#17

I wish Monoprice still made their original Dual Extruder Makerbot clone. Mine has truly been a workhorse, and easy to fix when it goes down.

Oh Discourse, you can be so finicky when us Humans try to fix our blunders.


#18

A friend of mine recently looked in to this and chose a Cetus. He had these reasons.

  • Better mechanical components than others in the price range (ie, no flexing)
  • Adequate software
  • Components fairly easy to upgrade with 3rd party stuff when the desire strikes

#19

Christmas and Birthday is really close together and celebrating Valentines is out of the question due to Tax Season.

Luckily when possible I get 1 big gift for all 3!


#20

Is this the one you are referring to?

https://www.amazon.com/MakerBot-Smart-Extruder-Replicator-MP07325/dp/B01A8DI9JM/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1545076563&sr=8-3&keywords=extruder+makerbot


#21

A wide variety of materials is something I definitely want. I’m not sure about the kit thing. I am not mechanically inclined.
My husband will not have much time to help for the next few years lol.