The 7 Best 3D Printers to Buy in 2018

In the last few years, 3D printing has transformed from a niche market to a mainstream sensation, with over 150 models currently available. 3D printing is a manufacturing technique that allows you to create a physical object from a digital design by adding layer upon layer of material. It starts with a design document, and from there the printing process varies. Some desktop printers melt plastic onto a print platform, while larger industrial machines use lasers to melt metal precisely. Importantly, different 3D printers support different materials, from plastic to metals to sandstone and the list of supported materials is growing every year.

3D printing allows you to create complex 3D designs easily at a low fixed cost. Prototyping is quick, and every item can be customized. However, large production runs more expensive than traditional manufacturing, and the end product tends to be of limited strength and with lower precision.

When it comes to printing technologies, there are a few options. FDM (Fused Deposition Modeling) is the most inexpensive 3D printing technology, and it works with a wide range of plastic-based materials like nylon and ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene). Its cheap, but is a poor choice for more intricate design needs.

SLA (Stereolithography) and DLP (Digital Light Processing) both use a light source to solidify a liquid resin. SLA uses a laser, and DLP uses a projector. These processes make for really accurate and detailed creations, such as jewelry and sculptures. It tends to be more expensive to perform than FDM printing (the printers are generally smaller and the process is not recommended for large objects).

If youre still unsure about which kind of 3D printer might work for you, keep reading to see our seven best 3D printer picks thatll have you creating objects in no time.

The M2 from Ohio-based Makergear is a professionallevel 3D printer praised for its all-round solid engineering. The M2 has a build area of 254 x 202 x 203 mm, and a minimum layer height of 20 microns. Its a standard FDM printer best suited for ABS and PLA, and comes pre-assembled, but it also has a wealth of upgrades and potential tweaks that allows it to become your perfect 3D printer. For example, theres the option for onboard controls, a dual extruder and interchangeable nozzles.

Its not the easiest of 3D printers to get started with and its pretty noisy, so the M2 might not be the best choice if this is your first 3D printer. Its design appears basic, but this simplicity ends up being a strength since you can use it year after year. Once you have the M2 calibrated, it produces consistent high quality prints at a fast speed. As its an open platform, you are free to use the software of your choice, such as the popular Simplify3D. A clear winner for the 3D printing enthusiast.

The LulzBot is notable for its simplicity and reliability you can just plug it in and get started. Its auto-leveling bed, all-metal hot end and self-cleaning nozzle make the LulzBot effortless to use. It also has a strong community of users behind it for when you need a bit of technical support.

Precision is lacking when compared to the Ultimaker 2, at a minimum layer height of 50 microns. It is also significantly smaller than the Ultimaker 2, with a build area of 152 x 152 x 158 mm. As an FDM 3D printer, ongoing costs are low. It can print at temperatures up to 300 degrees Celsius, and the included Cura LulzBot Edition software is super easy to understand and use.

So whats not to like? The LulzBot Mini is a bit noisier than most, and unlike many printers, it requires a constant connection to a computer while prints are being completed. Otherwise, its a highly recommended choice for beginners in 3D printing.

The Monoprice Select Mini 3D Printer is by far the best 3D printer on the list as an introductory unit. The Monoprice offers not only an economical 3D Printer consumer option, but comes packed with everything youd expect from other high-end models.

The Monoprice Select Mini 3D Printer supports all filament types. Its heated build plate with varying temperatures allows it to work with basic filaments such as ABS and PLA, as well as more complex materials such as wood and metal composites. The 3D Printer comes assembled straight out of the box with full calibration and includes a sample PLA filament and MicroSD card with preinstalled models, so you can begin printing immediately. It comes with a one-year warranty.

At the other end of the scale is the professional desktop resin printer for intermediate or pro users, and the Formlabs Form 2 is a top choice for this segment. A new peel feature and heated tank increase print consistency. A touchscreen display and wireless controls make for easier manipulation, and an automatic resin system keeps things cleaner with less mess.

Build volume is slightly bigger, at 145 x 145 x 175 mm. Layer height remains at 25 microns. SLA resin printing still remains much slower and more expensive than FDM, so take that into account if youre planning on choosing a Form 2 because you want to increase your print runs. It may be better to use a Form 2 to build an excellent master and use other methods such as injection molding or resin casting to make hundreds of copies.

Consider the Formlabs Form 2 if you value a larger size, high quality resin printer with additional wireless controls thatll make your life easier on a day-to-day basis.More

MakerBot have released a slew of 3D printers, and the fourth-generation Replicator 2 continues to be one of their most successful models. With a more industrial look (steel chassis and LCD screen), the Replicator 2 would fit perfectly in a home garage. Its a larger printer than most, too, with an excellent build volume of 285 x 153 x 155 mm just make sure you have room for it.

This FDM 3D printer supports printing from SD card and predominantly prints on PLA. Its an extra-durable machine; unlike some of the flimsy 3D printers on the market, the Replicator 2 is known for its reliability and build quality. Its precise, easy to use and has good software.

On the down side, theres no heated platform and its a noisy model. Its also pricey and is best suited for intermediate users who want a machine that will go the distance.

The FlashForge Creator Pro is a fantastic value for anyone looking to get into the 3D printing world without spending a small fortune. Often described as the absolute best value for the money, the plug n play setup is just one of the many reasons why this FlashForge appears on this list. A build area of 225 x 145 x 150 millimeters that can be used with ABS, PLA and exotic materials allows for a minimum layer height of just 100 microns. Offered with dual extruders, the FlashForge is ready to print a wide range of experimental materials. Theres plenty of availability for spare parts and maintenance is fairly straightforward.

There are some reviews that highlight noise as a notable con, and many reviews recommend using open source software for printing over the included FlashForge software. And at 24.25 pounds, youll want to create some space for it in the house or in an office before it arrives.

If youre just getting your feet wet in the 3D printing world, then the Monoprice 13860 Maker Selected 3D Printer V2 is a great option to consider. While more experienced 3D printers are kit-based that require a certain level of knowledge and experience, the Maker Select assembles with just 6 screws. The included 2GB microSD card offers preloaded 3D printable models that you can attempt with the sample PLA filament also included out of the box. And once that runs out, what you want to use is up to you, as the Maker Select can print with any type of 3D filament.

The large 8 x 8-inch build plate and 7-inch vertical spacing offer additional space for printing larger, more complex models than most beginner 3D printers. The heated build-plate allows for highly-reliable printing utilized alongside compatible professional and open-source software that works with Windows, MacOS, and Linux. Online reviews highlight the easily sourced replacement parts if they cannot be 3D printed, as well as numerous upgrades you can make for more professional and complex prints.

Disclosure: At Lifewire, our expert writers are committed to researching and writing thoughtful and editorially independent reviews of the best products for your life and your family. If you like what we do, you can support us through our chosen links, which earn us a commission.

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Cheapest, Best Most Reliable Desktop 3D Printers — 3DPrints 2015 Buyers Guide

byWhitney HipoliteApr 7, 20153D Printers3D PrintingBusinessEditorials / Opinions

Its rather crazy how many emails we receive on a daily basis asking us to suggest a 3D printer for a particular use. There are literally hundreds of different machines on the market, and several new printers launching each and every week. It can oftentimes be difficult to sift through all the clutter, especially if you are new to the industry. Thats why I got together with some of the writers here at to crunch our heads together and come up with what we feel is a pretty solid list of printers, which you really cant go wrong purchasing.

These machines are listed in a particular order based on several criteria, but any printer that has made this list is probably not going to disappoint you in the long run. We used a combination of 3D Hubs rating system, combined with m reviews, other third party review sites, reader feedback, and the experiences of the team here at to choose and then rank these machines to the best of our ability. This list is not static and will change weekly as we feed additional information into our ranking methodology, and as new printers emerge onto the market.

Aleph Objects and their LulzBot brand is one of the hardest working 3D printing companies I have ever come across. They have been growing by leaps and bounds, and I truly believe this is because of one mainattributequality. The customer support is phenomenal, the printers are built on a completely open source framework, and the machines have some of the most useful features available on the market today. Although I have not seen the TAZ 5 in action or used it myself,  I have seen in action or used pretty much every one of their other machines and judging from the warm reception the TAZ 5 has received early on, I am willing to rank this printer as one of the top buys within the space. Boasting a spacious 298 x 275 x 250 mm build envelope, with the ability to print in a laundry list of materials, this printer should be on the top of your shopping list. With a company tag line of Industrial Grade 3D Printing at Your Desktop, I will not be one to argue. Priced at$2,200, its not the most affordable, but if you have the money to spend on a 3D printer, this likely is your best bet.

This 3D printer has to be ranked at or near the top of pretty much every 3D printer review site you will come across. Almost every review you will read, whether it be from Amazon where the last time I checked, 92 out of 97reviewers gave it 5 stars, or the monthly 3D Hubs rankings, this is an exceptional machine for its price. The frame of this 3D printer is incredibly sturdy, and it utilizes some of the best components on the market. You will be hard pressed to find someone who has purchased this machine and has anything really bad to say about it. If you are looking for a printer which will perform just as well as any machine on the market, is priced lower than many of its main competitors, and has amazing customer support, this is the machine for you. This printer has a build envelope of 203 x 254 x 203 mm, and is priced at$1,775.

Pros:Customer support, print quality, sturdiness

This machine continues to receive some of the highest user reviews on 3D Hubs among all 3D printers on the market.With a heated build platform, auto calibration, and a decent size build envelope of 200 x 200 x 185 mm, this machine packs a punch. It comes equipped with the companys Z-suite software making the conversion of a model to a 3D print as easy as 123. Priced at$1,999, it certainly isnt the cheapest machine on the market, but as the saying goes, You get what you pay for. The company certainly has put its best foot forward with both this printer and their entire still-developing ecosystem.

Pros:Print quality, accuracy, and ease of use

Cons:Material compatibility, connectivity

Brook Drumm is considered by many as one of the grandfathers of 3D printing. Hiscompany, Printrbot, consistently releases quality products, which not only perform great, but are insanely affordable. This machine has won several awards, and continues to be one of the most well-received printers on the market today. With a build envelope of 150 x 150 x 150 mm, users are able to print items of a decent size, while not breaking the bank. Time and time again we have heard from users about how high the resolution of printed objects end up being, and the overall quality and sturdiness of the machine is apparent. In fact, priced at just$599.99fully assembled, its hard to go wrong with this machine.

Pros:Sturdiness, print quality, price

This printer steps away from the norm when it comes to desktop 3D printing, and uses an entirely different process, Stereolithography (SLA). Although it may be a bit messier than the FDM/FFFprocesses, the Form 1+, by far, will give you the best overall print quality when compared to any of the other printers on this list. Thats because SLA technology is simply more capable of printing intricate detail. The Form 1+ is perfect for the business setting as well as for the home. Instead of strands of thermoplastic filament, the Form 1+ utilizes a photosensitive resin which could best be described as a syrup. The resin is cured (hardened) as it is exposed to a laser beam. It is able to print at layer thicknesses as small as 25 microns and has a build volume of 125 x 125 x 165 mm. Priced at$3,299it is the most expensive printer to make our listhowever, its really hard to even try and compare the Form 1+ with these other machines.

Pros:Print quality, ease of use, appearance

Cons:Cost to run (resin is expensive, electricity), material compatibility

This is one of our favorites, not only because its ranked high by users overall, but because its small, elegant, and will enable you to open up access to the entire MakerBotecosystem. If you want quality and the backing of a $2.5+ billion company (Stratasys) behind your printer, the Mini may be for you. Equipped with an on-board camera to monitor your prints, and incredibly easy software for transforming your models into physical objects, the Minis main shortcoming is its ability to only print with PLA, as well as its somewhat limited build volume of just 100 x 100 x 125 mm. If you are fine printing with PLA, which will still provide quite a range of materials options, and you arent looking to print large objects, the MakerBot Mini is likely a great bet, priced at just$1,375.

Pros:Ecosystem, ease of use, connectivity

Back in September the writers at wereprovided one ofthese machines to review. Initially we gave it to a writer, Heidi Milkert, who had never had any experience using a 3D printer before. Remarkably, she was able to quickly figure the printer out and within hours had her first print sitting on her desk at the office. Case in point, this 3D printer is simple, reliable, and priced very affordably. With the ability to print with both PLA and ABS thermoplastic, and a build envelope of 230 x 150 x 140 mm, this machine is perfect for almost any 3D printing job. Priced at$1,299, this fully enclosed 3D printer is a solid buy.

Ultimaker is ranked up there with MakerBot as one of the top selling desktop 3D printer brands, and for good reason. The company has prided themselves on delivering high quality 3D printers which also look nice sitting on you table or desk. With layer resolutions as fine as 20 microns, and a build envelope of 223 x 223 x 205 mm, this machine is great for everyday home use. It will print with PLA, ABS, and U-Pet materials, is very easy to calibrate and get started, and is priced at$2,499.

Airwolf 3D is a name those within the industry often associate with quality performance and cutting edge architecture when it comes to 3D printing.  Although their typical machines cost in excess of $3000, the HDL was launched as ameans for the company to enter the entry-level space.  The machine is priced just under $2,295, and if your budget allows for it, this is a must buy. As with all Airwolf3D machines, the HDL is tested for 20 hours prior to shipping and comes pre-calibrated out of the box.  With a large 12 x 8 x 12 build envelope and the ability to print at speeds of up to 150mm/s this machine is perfect for beginners as well as the 3D printing pro.  Another added bonus is the 6-month warranty and the exceptional technical support that Airwolf has come to be known for.   Additionally if the $2,295 price tag is too much, the company offers leasing options starting at just $50 per month.

Pros:Customer support, large size, material compatibility, easily upgradable

Oftentimes the simpler the machine, the better it is. After all, the less likely it is for a part to malfunction if there are fewer parts overall. Im a big fan of the RepRap movement, and have to say, some of the machines spawned from this movement are extremely capable, and best of all, affordable. The Prusa i3 Hephestos is of course an opensource machine which was developed by the bq Department of Innovation and Robotics. With a build volume of 215 x 210 x 180 mm, and available in three different versions, each with varying degrees of resolution as well as print speed, this printer would be good for teenage beginners all the way up to professional designers. Priced starting at €499 and going on up, its incredibly affordable if you dont need all the bells and whistles found in other machines.

Pros:Community, open source, print quality

Cons:Ease of use, print speed, noise

Utilizing some of the best linear actuators available on the market, this small, yet powerful 3D printer has been well received byconsumers and small businesses alike. Its an older machinein fact, it was unveiled back in 2012but still tops the charts when it comes to reliability and precision. Afinia has since produced newer machines, but their older printer, the H480, seems to have been a bit ahead of its time. The build envelope for this machine is not the largest, at 140 x 140 x 135 mm, but that doesnt stop reviewers from keeping it near the top in terms of best bang for the buck. The H480 is priced at$1,299.

Cons:Material compatibility, running cost (energy)

There you have it, out current list of the top 10 3D printers, when considering price, reliability, and quality. With new printers coming out weekly, please check back to this list weekly to see if anything has changed. We will also be adding new categories to the list in the future. Feel free to chime in with your opinion and provide your own personal insights in the3D Printer Buyers Guide forumthread on

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Discussion related to 3D Printer parts, such as hot ends, extruders, and anything else you may want to discuss related to printer parts, as well as filament, resin, and sintering powder.Inside 3D Printing EventsSingaporeFebruary 6-7, 2018DsseldorfFebruary 21-22, 2018SydneyMay 9-11, 2018São PauloJune 11-12, 2018SeoulJune 27-29, 2018New YorkOctober 30-31, 2018TokyoOctober 2018

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Wanhao Duplicator i3 3D Printer Review

Looking to get into the exciting world of 3D printing? Beginners should focus on simple and affordable printers that can easily be modded and come built to last. For this Wanhao Duplicator i3 review, we look at one of the best beginner printers, helping you decide if its the right starter machine for you.

More Details ❯Wanhao Duplicator i3 Review Basics

At its incredibly low price, you may wonder how good this printer could possibly be. As youll see in our Wanhao Duplicator i3 review, we assure you theres nothing to worry about. The Duplicator i3 is on version 2.1, and measures 19.7 x 18.9 x 11.8 inches with a print area of 8 x 8 x 7 inches. Thats a total of about 450 cubic inches of build space. Print speed ranges between 10-100mm/s depending on your mods and settings. It comes with a .4mm nozzle and achieves average print resolution of 100-400 microns. Print at temperatures up to 260C on the heated print bed, giving you plenty of 1.75mm filament flexibility.

More Details ❯Wanhao Duplicator i3 Review ProsDurable and Well-Built

The Duplicator i3 comes nearly fully assembled and takes a few short minutes to install the Z-frame with included tools. Once assembled, its obvious that this machine was built with care. Its body is all steel and aluminum, making it a bit heavy at 26.5lbs, but completely durable and fool-proof. Its open, industrial design is ideal for modding once you get the hang of simple projects and want to kick things up a notch with a new extruder, new axis belts, upgraded build plates, and more.

For its price, the precision of this printer is exceptional. Printing resolution is listed at 100-400 microns, with an XY precision of 12 microns. Real-life results are comparable to printers twice or three times the price, even if it is slower. PLA, ABS, and even nylon prints with extreme accuracy. Note that due to this printers open design, your prints will be subject to the elements, so always print in a dry, temperature-controlled room.

Feel free to use any g-code based slicer with the Duplicator i3, including favorites likeCuraSlic3r, orSimplify3D. This is a nice feature for any user, from beginners who are learning the different software, or for experienced users who already have a favorite.

Its worth mentioning that it will be difficult to get the Duplicator i3 to print faster than about 60mm/s without compromising the quality of your print or investing in some modifications. This top speed isnt terribly slow, but on average youll be seeing slower speeds around 30-40mm/s, and that leaves a bit to be desired. Still, if you have time on your hands, printing speed wont be an issue, and its possible to fix this problem by applying some ingenuity.

Make no mistake, the Duplicator i3 isnt the best 3D printer on the market, but it is certainly one of the best values. At its price, wed expect to see some seriously warped prints, or an unheated printer bed, or compromised resolution, but none of those things is true of this printer. In addition, you wont be stuck with any beginner or manufacturer software, which is often limiting and feels unfinished. Instead, you can start right away working with whatever slicer youre most comfortable with. For beginners or those looking to start modding a 3D printer to their exact specifications, we highly recommend the Duplicator i3 V2.1.

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BearingGate: An engineering failure analysis

TL;DR: Some of our bearings in the Titan Extruder and Titan Aero have been failing due to a series of unfortunate events and were really sorry about that. We have a solution to fix the problem on the way, and well be in a position to issue replacement parts in the next few weeks. Titan products shipping from now on will not be affected because we have a short term fix in place. If you have experienced a problem then please fill in the form and we will get replacements parts out to you. Read on to find out the finer details on what happened. The problem Titan Extruders (including Titan Aero) had been out in the wild for some time before we started noticing a very odd complaint coming in from some customers. The plastic lids, which we had manufactured from tough, near-bulletproof polycarbonate plastic, were starting to crack. This seemed impossible, so as well as replacing the cracked lids we also asked customers to send them to us, for some serious investigation. Our first suspicion was that our supplier had substituted the resin for something cheaper or not purged out the extruder properly – perhaps resulting in hydrolysis from moisture or some other material defect. We went through every batch from every moulding run, literally taking a hammer to them. No dice. Polycarbonate is as crack-resistant a material as ever (phew!). It became apparent that polycarbonate had its own kryptonite, and that we had found it. When the culprit was found, it wasnt what anyone expected. It turned out that the lubricant used on some of our bearings had a chemical composition perfect for chemically-degrading polycarbonate. To observe how thoroughly chemical breakdown occurred, we even left lids to soak in hot baths of lubricant, where they more or less disintegrated.  We solved the problem of how to break bullet-proof casings. Great. This was, to put it mildly, a problem. It only took a little bit of lubricant leaching from the bearing onto the lid for it to have a powerful crack inducing effect. Cracking in action. Luckily, as Sanjay explained on Reddit, only some of the bearings had been treated with this particular lubricant. We immediately changed the bearing lubricant used in Titan products, the lids stopped cracking, and everything looked to be in order. However, it wasnt long after that we received news that these bearings, with the new lubricant, were sometimes failing, effectively causing Titan products to cease functioning until the bearings were replaced. While we had been assured by suppliers that the new lubricant would have the same performance as the previous one (without all the lid-disintegration), this turned out not to be the case as bearings were seizing up and even rusting – a clear sign of inadequate lubrication. The short-term solution Finally, after several rounds of product testing, we believe weve reached a solution for the short-term future. We worked with IGUS to replace the problematic bearings with IGUS solid polymer bushings. The polymer they are made from has been formulated to have really low friction, eliminating the need for lubricant, so there will be no mess and no danger of cracking. In addition to not requiring lubricant and having low friction, IGUS polymers also have incredibly good wear properities, so we are confident that they will last for ages, requiring no maintenance. Lastly theyre much less prone to permanent damage from axial overtightening loads. IGUS bushings in action There are two downsides to this solution. The first is that these bearings need to be machined from bar stock as they were not a standard part, and the material is surprisingly difficult to machine, limiting production capacity and adding delays to stock. Additionally there is a slight increase in friction compared to a true bearing. For this reason we do not recommend the Slimline motor with Titan products that use IGUS bushings, but instead a Compact but Powerful motor. This will mean a slight increase in weight on the print-head, which is compensated for with the larger, higher torque motor being more reliable and easy to use on many printers. Nonetheless, these two downsides mean that bushings arent a perfect long-term solution for our needs. The long term solution The original bearings used on Titan products performed perfectly well – we have machines in our print farm that have been running almost non-stop for over a year, all using the original bearings with original lubricant. They also have less static friction than the IGUS bushings and so can run more smoothly and be used with Slimline motors to save weight on the print head. In order to switch back to bearings with the original, effective, lubricant we are changing the resin which the Titan lid is made from. Weve decided to move away from polycarbonate to Tritan by Eastman. Tritan has exceptionally good chemical resistance to lubricants and has very comparable mechanical and thermal performance to polycarbonate. Making the switch will eliminate the risk of degradation and give us the freedom to use the optimum lubricant in our bearings to restore the original performance of Titan products. Unfortunately we cant put this solution to work right away. We want to make sure that nothing like this happens again, so were running several rounds of high-stress, long-term tests before going ahead with these changes in production. These Titan Aeros will be having a rough time of it How were going to make this right with our customers Firstly, we would like to sincerely apologise to all those who have been inconvenienced by this series of unfortunate events, and thank you all for your patience and support. The unforeseen issue with the degradation of the polycarbonate, followed by the subsequently induced issue with poor lubrication of the bearings caught us off guard in both cases. The decision to change lubricant, which appeared to be a good, well thought out solution to the cracking problem backfired. Despite the assurances of our suppliers that the new lubricant would perform just as well as the old, the bearings began to fail. Were working as quickly as possible to get the long term solution of Tritan-Titan lids and optimally lubricated bearings in stock and ready to ship, but this will take some time to get both the bearings and lids in stock in enough quantity to replace faulty parts. In the short term we will be shipping out Titans with the new IGUS bearings and larger motors to customers buying from today onwards. Unfortunately we do not have the production capacity to send these new parts out to every customer who has previously experienced this issue. However as soon as we have the new Tritan lids and optimally lubricated bearings we will begin to issue replacements to all those who are experiencing issues. This will be the easiest drop-in fix for our customers, requiring no change in motors. We stand by our product and support our customers – we are committed to making this right with our customers and are happy to issue replacements to all those who have been affected. If you require a replacement please complete this form and we will keep you updated as we progress towards resolving this issue. Additional FAQs Will you be issuing a recall? No. This failure is not dangerous, nor is it a certainty for all Titan products. We have Titans and Aeros in-house that have been printing for thousands of hours with no problems. The fault is with a single, small part which we will be replacing free of charge for any customers who require it. Will this affect the Lulzbot Aerostruder? No. Lulzbot have used their own bearings in developing the Aerostruder, so it should have no problems. When will Titans without this fault start shipping? 23/01/2018. If your Titan product ships on or after this date, it will not be affected by the bearing fault as it will either ship with bushings or with the improved lids and bearings. It will be clear in the Website product description whether the product youre ordering will ship with IGUS bushings or improved bearings. Does this affect the Titan Aqua? No. Titan Aqua has a completely different axial load profile from the Titan Extruder and Titan Aero, and should not suffer any bearings failures. How long will it be until Titans with the new bearings start shipping? Were still running stress tests, and as such our expected lead time until these better bearings go out is approximately 5-8 weeks. It will be made clear in the online product description whether the product that you buy will be shipping with IGUS bushings or improved bearings. How do I know if my bearing is faulty? If it jams for no discernible reason, if its broken or cracked, or if theres an accumulation of rust around the bearing, then its faulty. This issue only affects Titan products shipped between February 2017 and January 2018. If your product was ordered outside of that window then you will not be affected. Check for rust around the bearing.

NB: We use the term water interchangeably with coolant throughout this blog post and, indeed, the product description. Well which is it!? we hear you cry. Well its both, in that we recommend using a water-based coolant with Titan Aqua and the E3D water-cooling kit. You could use plain water and it would work, but it would also go mouldy and lime-scaley and generally gross and gunked-up quite quickly. Water-based commercial coolants contain all the anti-fungal salts and distillation that the system needs. Plus theyre often UV-colour tinted, which looks much cooler than boring old transparent H2O. Why water? The primary use-case for water-cooled HotEnds in 3D printers is when using heated chambers or passively-heated enclosures. Heated chambers use an active heating element and are necessary when printing with some engineering and high-performance filaments. Passively-heated enclosures simply use heat generated from the print bed to warm the air inside a 3D printer, the intention being to prevent materials like ABS and ASA from warping due to draughts and cool air. The method for this can be as simple as a plastic sheet placed over the front of the printer, a box placed around the printer, or a roast-chicken bag wrapped around the printer (dont laugh, there is video evidence of Sanjay using this method in the early days of E3D). These methods are actually very effective at warming the environment around the print, and allow users to print in materials including polycarbonate, Ultem, and PAEK, but create a number of perhaps unexpected problems. For one thing, cooling starts to be less effective when you try to cool a HotEnd with warm air. This creates a less-sharp thermal transition for the filament, and therefore less precise printing. Expect oozing, blobbing, and stringing. Even good-quality fans like the ones we use for V6 and Titan Aero also start to fail at around 45C – 50C, and motors (which generate their own internal heat) arent keen either. Conversely, the air moving around the heatsink fan creates pockets of turbulent, cooler air. This risks more warping of the printed plastic, negating the benefit of a heated chamber. Fans are also noisy and can vibrate at high speeds. This is Rory, creator of Titan Aqua. Inventor, engineer, part-time giant. Technically, a fan still does the actual job of cooling for Titan Aqua, but its not situated bulkily on the print-head next to the part. Instead, we use a large and very effective fan mounted outside of the chamber. The fan is big so that it doesnt have to spin as fast as a normal one, also making it much quieter. The job of water in the system is to transfer heat from the HotEnd to a radiator attached to the fan, where it can be dissipated. Now while water isnt the best coolant in the world (ammonia, for example, has a higher specific heat capacity, but is rather unpleasant), it is many, many times better than air. A small amount of water can do the same job as litres and litres of air. Our design is such that coolant circulates inside the metal body of Titan Aqua, keeping it cool by carrying heat away. The water-cooling channel is intentionally wide to remove metal and to reduce as much weight as possible while maximising water-flow and heat-transfer area. This body simply and reliably mounts onto the face-plate of the extruder motor. While its not often discussed, motors do create heat internally due to electrical power dissipation, and can fail at temperatures over 80C. Chances are therefore good that they will fail sooner or later when run in a heated chamber. Aquas internal cooling keeps the motor running reliably at an optimal temperature, and maintains the same powerful extrusion youd get with a standard Titan setup.   Of course the relationship between electricity and water has long been a somewhat turbulent one, and the proximity of flowing water channels to an electrical motor might be quite reasonably prompting wariness in some of you. We would like to dispel any fears you might have on this count; weve made the Aqua very watertight indeed. By implementing a gasketing system with a custom-made, tightly-fitting seal, weve made Aqua to be as watertight as a vacuum-sealed raincoat. Groovy. Another aspect that some of you may find disconcerting is that the Aqua body and guide are actually two separate parts fixed together. This design isnt absolutely ideal, as thermal contact is therefore less than perfect. However, it offers a number of benefits, in that it allows us to create variants for different filament sizes, it makes it much easier to assemble other components, and it makes manufacturing much easier and therefore less costly. This minor issue is also offset by the design of the components themselves, which are made to maximise surface area contact. In addition the amount of heat that needs to be transferred away from the heatsink is not as great as you might imagine, so that as long is removed efficiently (as is the case with water-cooling), the HotEnd will work perfectly. As well as including all the benefits of water-cooling, Titan Aqua also includes some benefits all of its own.   Titan Pedigree Both Titan Aqua and its predecessor Titan Aero are based on our classic Titan Extruder (as their names might suggest). This means that they make use of the same tried-and-tested features like the idler mechanism, sharp-toothed custom-machined hobb, and 3:1 gearing ratio, all of which make the Titan extremely precise, tenacious, and easy to use. This also brings all the benefits of reliability and expertise. We have thousands of hours of experience printing with Titan extruders in-house, which means that we know every single one of their strengths and potential weaknesses. Weve also carried through everything we learned while designing Titan Aero: weve kept the all-metal design and the compact, rigid body, while adding a cantilevered hobb shaft. This lowers the axial load placed on the shaft and makes the design more open from the front. Its basically a water-cooled Aero with an even sharper thermal transition to further increase flow accuracy and reduce risk of jamming. Weve also changed up the mounting style, so that you can assemble it independently before mounting it on your printer. This is a godsend when tinkering with enclosed printers, which arent known for their internal roominess.   Ecosystem Aqua is a complete, grown-up member of the E3D family. Being cut from the same cloth as Titan Aero, Aqua also maintains the same compatibility with V6 hot-side parts. The heat break, block, nozzle, etc can all be swapped with V6 parts and even Volcano parts, so you can upgrade with E3Ds specialist high-temperature performance parts. In particular, we recommend the following upgrades for super-heated synergy: Titanium heat break Plated copper block and nozzle High-precision heater cartridge PT 100 amplifier board PT 100 temperature sensor Plated copper comes with extra shine. Water-Cooling System This isnt our first foray into water-cooling. The Kraken, our mighty feat of engineering, not only had four heads but was also fed on water. Our water-cooling system, however, was less impressive. It was of course perfectly functional, but definitely still had a more home-made scent about it. Quite literally in fact, as we often used takeaway containers as coolant reservoirs and 3D printed some parts of it. Of course if you prefer this kind of set-up and have the skill to keep it working reliably then thats absolutely fine (not to mention quite impressive!) and Aqua integrate into it quite happily. However, in the interests of user-friendliness weve invented our own, much-evolved water cooling kit. It isnt complicated – in fact weve taken steps to simplify it as much as possible. All parts are off-the-shelf, standard versions that can be easily modified with the same pieces as youd find in a PC water-cooling system. Weve combined the reservoir and pump into a single, quiet, unit and done the same for the radiator and fan. Thats not to say that the system doesnt work hard. The water being pumped around the system simultaneously cools the tubes through which it flows, the various couplers, and even the motor. Totally cool. One unique addition is that of slim, flexible nylon tubing which attaches to the HotEnd itself via adaptors. This tubing has the same outer diameter as Bowden tubing, meaning that it can be easily routed through cable chains for organisation and assembly. Adaptors connect these slim tubes with standard 8mm silicone tubing, of the same standard material and diameter as you would find in water-cooling systems built for computers.  

Those of you whove seen our new Gold V6 will have seen the swanky new Capricorn PTFE tubing and collet clips that it comes with. This blog post goes into more detail on the need for these upgrades, and how they work. TL;DR: We have a new high-performance bowden tube, and ways of making our tube couplings grip the tube more securely using a pre-tensioning clip. These will make your bowden system more responsive and reliable. Read on to find out how. What is a bowden system? In the original incarnations of 3D printer extrusion systems the motor, gearing, filament drive and HotEnd were all built together in a single assembly. The extruder (motor, gearing, and filament drive) thus fed filament directly into the HotEnd. But back in 2009 a guy called Erik (who went onto start a company called Ultimaker) came up with the fancy idea of removing the heavy, bulky motor and drive mechanism from the print-head. The filament drive mechanism would instead push the filament into a slick tube, which would guide it all the way into the HotEnd which was located at the print-head. Its a bit like a bicycle brake cable, but backwards. This results in some useful benefits: The print-head that moves is lighter, so it can move faster and with higher accelerations. This means quicker prints, less ringing and a cheaper motion system. The amount of stuff on the print-head is much lower, and takes up less space. This can mean a smaller print head, a larger usable print volume, more extruders on one print head, or any combination of these factors. However, there are also some notable downsides: More resistance to extrusion due to increased drag More lag/lash/hystersis/slop/whatever you want to call it. The extrusion system is simply not going to be as responsive as a direct extrusion system You cant print flexible or soft materials as easily Not to mention a fair few bowden myths: You just need to increase retraction and your bowden system will be as precise as a direct extruder Bowden systems improve print quality because the resistance of the spool to unwinding no longer tugs on the print-head as it moves around By diving a little deeper into the physics of where the downsides to a bowden system really come from, we can begin to understand how to improve these systems by minimising the negative effects. What needs fixing? Your extruder system has a finite amount of pushing force. You want as much as possible of that pushing force to be used to generate pressure in your HotEnd, as its what causes the molten filament to actually extrude from the print-head (pretty crucial to 3D printing!). The friction of filament sliding its way from the filament drive to the HotEnd saps away some of this force, leaving less force to create useful pressure. When we use a bowden system the filament has to travel on a longer and more convoluted path, and so we get higher losses to friction. We tackle this by using a tube made of PTFE (a very slippery material indeed), which reduces but does not eliminate friction. This problem is fairly easily mitigated by ensuring you have an extruder mechanism which can exert enough force on the filament. Friction in a standard v. Capricorn bowden tube: More friction in the tube means less force pushing filament through the HotEnd This leaves us with the rather more complex matter of response and control. A printer needs good control of the amount of flow from its nozzle in order to accurately build parts. It also needs to be able to carefully control when extrusion starts and stops. We maintain this control by using a stepper motor, which moves the extruder filament drive wheels very precisely. However, there are still some errors that occur. The first is what we might call pure backlash. This might be something like backlash in your geared extruder, or slack in the couplings of your bowden system. To counter this you have to increase your retraction distances to take up the lost motion upon direction change, and when doing so there is some delay. Another error source in extrusion systems is the compression/buckling of the filament. As we apply pressure to the filament in order to extrude it will bend a little (but a little is all it takes) between the extruder drive wheel and the HotEnd melt zone. Because of this spring-like compression we can advance the filament by 1mm at the drive wheels, but 1mms worth of filament will not immediately exit the nozzle in perfect synchronicity. In a direct extruder with a well-constrained filament path there is very little flex and so our control system is very stiff, with changes in extruder motor speed being quickly translated to changes in nozzle flow. However with a bowden system this filament-spring is much softer due to its much increased length. The subsequent deformation under force results in extruder motor speed changes taking longer to be reflected at the nozzle, and the errors being greater in magnitude. Retractions try to counter this by pre-pumping at the start of extrusion and relieving pressure at the end of extrusion. The more nuanced pressure advance algorithms do a conceptually similar thing, but are continuously compensating during acceleration and deceleration. Whatever control method you use, it is not possible to gain control authority over a system that is inherently less responsive. You can compensate for the errors to an extent, but you cant eliminate them. Your extruder has a finite amount of speed and acceleration which it can use for compensating. So this takes us back to improving the physical bowden system. We want to increase the stiffness of our filament-spring, and remove any lash in the system. Making it better Lash is easy to deal with. If you have a geared extruder you want to ensure your gears are well meshed and with no slop. With a modern extruder like Titan this is pretty easy. For the bowden couplings (which can have some wiggle room in them) we are introducing collet clips, which slide under the toothed collet part of the coupling that physically holds the tube and locks it into place with a little pre-tension to boot. This reduces coupling lash to near zero as the collet and tube it is holding are locked into place. To increase the stiffness of the filament spring we are introducing Capricorn PTFE Tubing; a new, higher tolerance tube, with a tighter 1.9mm internal diameter and added internal lubricant. This has a twofold benefit – it reduces sliding friction of the filament in the tube, but most importantly it makes the filament spring stiffer, by quite a lot. The tighter internal diameter permits the filament to have far less flexion than in our standard 2mm ID tubing, meaning that it cant bunch or coil up. This really firms up the response of the whole bowden system. Because the filament has no space in which to bend within the tube, movement produced by the extruder is much more efficiently translated down the tube, into the HotEnd, and out the other side. Filament bunching into a coil in a bowden tube, versus tighter constraint with Capricorn tubing. You just have to make sure that you dont use poor-quality filament with an uneven diameter, which these days is far less of a concern than when we originally introduced bowden versions of E3D HotEnds. Other things you can do to improve performance include having the shortest bowden tube possible, while keeping bend radius no less than around 150mm. Dont forget that bowden tubes can and do wear over time. Abrasive filament will gradually eat away at the inside of the tubing, and just the passage of filament with drive-wheel toothmarks on it will have an impact. Additionally, the ends where the couplings grip can get chewed up over time, but this is much reduced if you use our new collet clips. The spool weight myth is countered because you get the same no-drag effect with a direct extruder by running a guide tube from the spool holder to the extruder in the normal way, thus keeping a constant filament length between extruder and spool independent of carriage position. When all is said and done, what this really means is that you are going to get better prints with our new bowden tubing and collet clips. Particularly a much reduced extrusion start/stop dimple, along with reduced oozing during travel, all achieved with lower retraction distances. This is going to be extra-noticeable with somewhat more flexible materials like nylons and semi-flexible materials where the buckling has a more significant effect in the extrusion system, but even with stiff PLA were still impressed at the very noticeable difference that switching to this stuff makes. Upgrade your Bowden system now with Capricorn tubing from E3D.

TCT 2017 – Behind the Scenes with E3D

Its mid October 2017 and here at E3D we cant quite believe how fast the years flying by. With the launch of Titan Aero nearly 6 months ago, along with supplying our HotEnds to many open source 3D printer manufacturers (Lulzbot, Prusa, Dagoma to name a few), were delighted that the E3D ecosystem has become synonymous with reliable, high performance 3D printing. A highlight so far, as always, has been the TCT show in Birmingham, UK. This annual trade show and conference has become a key event in the industry calendar, and its been an honour to see the growth, refinement and impetus driving additive manufacturing. Its fantastic to both watch and be a part of. The show always gives us a chance to catch up with the whole community, and to show you guys what were spending all of our time doing (other than making HotEnds of course). We thought wed share a taste of the show with you for anyone who missed it! Heres the E3D version Behind the Scenes Setting up for the show is always peppered with major and minor calamities, usually related to the disproportionate E3D staff to Hi-Vis vests ratio. This year the problem was exacerbated by the new office pet, who insisted on having his own to wear. Roary was in a huff because Health and Safety wouldnt let him climb the ladder We were joined this year by Tim from Filastruder, a prominent stateside E3D reseller and thoroughly nice chap. He probably wasnt expecting to actually build the stand hed be attending, but theres nothing better for bonding than having your face in a team-members armpit as you both wrestle with the overhead banners. Sorry, Tim. Building the stand is all part of the fun… People The industry were in is so young that many of its founders and key influencers tend to be at many of its trade shows around the globe. Perhaps one of the biggest influences on E3D, and certainly the reason we exist in the first plac.

World tour the best physical stores to buy a 3D Printer

World tour: the best physical stores to buy a 3D Printer

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World tour: the best physical stores to buy a 3D Printer

In the mid-70s, with computers getting smaller, cheaper, easier to use and more powerful, some pioneers were opening retail stores to make them available to a growing population of early adopters. We invite you now for anAround the Worldtour of the stores where anyone can see, touch and buy desktop 3D Printers.

Come and follow us for an exciting journey covering 33 stores in 17 countries, starting in New York and ending in Melbourne.

The beautiful large store, which opened in 2014, offers a large range of best-in-class desktop FDM and DLP/SLA 3D Printers, 3D Scanners and filaments, served by a team of passionate 3D Printing gurus. On offer also some 3D Printing classes, a Print on Demand and Design on Demand service.

Opening times are Monday to Friday 11am to 8pm, Saturday 12pm to 7pm

9375 N. Dixie Dr., Dayton, Ohio, USAand820 Davis Street, Evanston, Illinois,

The 2 stores have a short selection of 3D Printers and 3D filaments. They also offer a print on demand service.

OpenMonday to Friday9am-5pm (Dayton)9:30am-6pm (Evanston)

The Californian store offers a very wide choice of FDM 3D Printers and filaments. Lars Brubaker opened the store by end 2012.

With his team he is offering good support for customers willing to jump into the 3D Printing revolution.

Theyre also behind theMatterControl T10introduced atCES 2016.

6526 State St, Murray, UT 84107, United

The store sells AIO Robotics, Zortrax and Makerbot, among other less known brands in FDM, and even 2 models of SLA resin printer.

They organise local events for the community.

They also offer on-site support and training, and a maintenance/repair center.

Colosio 425. Hermosillo, Mexico City,

The Mexican store opened in November 2013 is selling a growing range of FDM desktop 3D Printers.

It offers also a print on demand service and a 3D scanning service, alongside training, and the Mini-Tu service, spanish for Mini-You.

215 Rathmines Rd Lower, Dublin,

The Irish store sells a short range of FDM 3D Printers. It holds regular workshop to introduce 3D Printing and 3D Scanning to its customers.

Founder Nigel Burke opened it in summer 2013, with his partner Leo Tilson, after he visited iMakr Store Grand Opening in London in April.

Opening times are Monday to Friday from 10am to 6pm.

79 clerkenwell Road, EC1R 5AR, London,

The large store opened in April 2013. This is the flagship store for the iMakr Group. On 2 floors, it sells a large range of FDM and DLP/SLA 3D Printers, 3D Scanners and related services, including the popular  Mini-You 3D Selfie. It holds regular training and events.

Opening times are Monday to Friday from 10am to 8pm, and Saturday 10am to 6pm.

20 rue du Marechal de Tassigny, Elancourt,

The store is only opened by appointment.

Rue de Dublin 27, 1050 Ixelles,

Just open in April 2016, the belgium store sell 3D printers from Ultimaker, Zortrax, Formlabs and Printrbot.

They offer a printing service on demand, offer training courses for individuals or pro, and offer a 3D design service on demand for specific needs

Opening hours: Mon-Fri 10AM 7PM, Saturday: training courses and appointments

Calle Pujades, 184, 08005 Barcelona,

The catalan store sells Zortrax and other printers including kits.

They also offer Print on Demand service.

C/Ruben Dario 6, Valencia,

The Spanish store sells FDM and SLA 3D Printers.It offers also a Print on Demand service.

RomaPescaraRagusaMilanoTurinoNapolyandPadova, Italy

With 7 stores in Italy, 3D Italy is a strong partner for well established FDM and DLP 3D Printers.

It provides courses on 3D design and 3D Printing, a Print on Demand and a 3D Scan on demand service.

Opening times differ from store to store.

Merkez, Darlaceze Cd. 4-1, 34381 Şişli/İstanbul,

The turkish store is selling Ultimaker, Zortrax, Up, Leapfrog, Craftbot, and Zaxe.

They also sell 3D scanners like Structure Sensor, David 3D and Artec.

Opening hours: Monday through Friday, 8am-6pm

Landstrasser Hauptstrasse 90, 1030 Vienna,

The Austrian store has a good range of FDM and SLA 3D Printers. It offers also a Print on Demand service, and a 3D Scanning on demand service.

The opening times are Monday to Friday from 10am to 6pm, and Saturday from 10am to 2pm.

Lechner Ödön fasor 2, 1095

The second branch of the 3Dee group offers a similar range to the Vienna branch, with similar services.

Opening times are Monday to Friday from 10am to 6pm.

Auenstraße 72, 80469 Munich,

The German store opened in January 2014. It sells FDM 3D Printers and related services.

Opening times are Monday to Friday from 10am to 7pm, and Saturday from 10am to 6pm (virtual visit)

Liselotte-Herrmannstr. 1, Berlin,

They only sell one brand of printers (Sharebot) and locally produced filament, they also offer services (3D scanning and 3D modelling) and call themselves more a 3D Printing Caf.

MakerPoint has 4 stores and 1 shop-in-a-shop in Netherlands.It offers a range of FDM and SLA 3D Printers.It also provides Design and Print on Demand services.

Opening times differ from store to store.

Sølvgade 85A København K, DenmarkandBanegårdsgade 4, Aarhus,

The 2 large stores resell a large range of 3D Printers, and of services including the popular Mini-You 3D Selfie.

Opening times are Monday to Thursday from 10am to 5pm and on Friday from 10am to 6pm.

Krakusa 8, KrakwandGrzybowska 4,00-131 Warszawa,

The 2 stores are only selling the Zortrax 3D Printers, as you would expect.

The first opened in Krakow back in October 2014, the second opened more recentlyin December 2015 in Warsaw.

Opening times are Monday to Friday from 9am to 7pm.

Sderot Yerushalyim, 3 Tel Aviv Jaffa,

The store is selling essentially the flashforge 3D Printers and 3D filaments. It also provides training and print on demand services.

Opening times are Sunday to Thursday from 9am to 7pm, and Friday from 10am to 2pm.

95 Johnston St Collingwood, Melbourne,

The Australian store was launched by Mark Pestkowski back in 2012. They are selling a good range of FDM and DLP 3D Printers.

They also hold events and training, and offers Print on Demand services.

Opening times are Monday to Friday from 10.30am to 6pm.

please note: we only mentioned physical stores actually selling 3D printers

despite our efforts, wemay have missed one:please let us know.

3D Printing Industry is collective work of several authors in our editorial team. Our dedicated team of writers all have a background in technology and are keen to provide news, views and insight into the latest trends in 3D printing across the board including the pioneering home users, the maker community and industrialists.

3D Bioprinting Market: Global Industry Analysis and Forecast 2015 – 2021

AVOC 3D, the super cheap and fast 3D printer on IndieGogo tomorrow

Dremel Digilab 3D45 3D printer technical specifications and pricing

CEL RoboxPRO 3D printer technical specifications and pricing

First look inside Ackurettas dual build Diplo 3D printer

First SPEE3D cold spray metal 3D printer in Asia with $190,000 NAMIC grant for Singapore 3D printing RD

Apple 3D printer patent granted, full color 3D printing system

Mimaki enters additive manufacturing with industrial scale full color 3D printer

3D printing news Sliced Arcam, Optomec, TU Delft, Neri Oxman

3D Printing at CES 2018: 13 experts identify trends

3D printing news Sliced Reebok, Carbon, Stratasys, GE Additive, 3D Systems and Shakespeare

Monoprice launches new 3D printers at CES 2018

Choc Edge – C

is an Anglo-Chinese technology company that provides ALM chocolate printing solutions to businesses and individuals who wish to design and produce creative chocolates. We are the pioneers of 3D chocolate printing and the initiators of the current food printing revolution. Our latest 3D chocolate printer is the, which improves greatly on all previous models.

3D chocolate printing is similar to 3D plastic printing, which itself is based on traditional coordinate system technology. Instead of printing in plastic, ourChoc Creatorenables users to print drawings and miniature objects in chocolate. The process involves converting an idea for a piece of chocolate art into a 3D model, and then converting the 3D model into an instruction code for theChoc Creatorto read – The code is generated by a computer program called a slicer, which slices a 3D model into layers and writes the printing instructions for each of these layers. [The slicer used byChoc Edgeis a python program with a basic model visualizer.] Once the code is ready, it can be loaded into theChoc Creatorand the object will be printed layer-by-layer. Although the slicer will automatically generate the code, the 3D model must be manually designed using CAD software. The image below describes the basic process :

In order to convey as much information as possible to potential users, theChoc Edgeteam have prepared a highly detailedFAQusing questions gathered from various chocolatiers, bakers, educational institutions, and marketing companies :

TheChoc Edgeteam designs, manufactures and retails 3D chocolate printers – Our latest product, theChoc Creator V2.0 Plus, is out now and available for purchase directly fromChoc Edgeor via our distribution network.

Design isnt all about software and technology – Its also about training your eyes to see everything in a way that sends sparks of inspiration to the creative part of the brain.

The realm of chocolate printing exists between the worlds of 3D printing (aka Additive Layer Manufacturing) and chocolatiering – two very different disciplines that are equally important for users of our technology to understand.

Innovation centre, Rennes Drive, Exeter, Devon, EX4 4RN, UK

Innovation centre, Rennes Drive, Exeter, Devon, EX4 4RN, UK

You can buy this 3D printed car next year for $53000

The auto industry is head over heels for VR

BMWs next generation of hybrids relies on modular electrification

Ford patent details system for autonomous police cars

Saudi Arabia releases major tech investor after corruption probe

Microsoft Band 3 prototype reveals the wearable that might have been

Amazon teases Alexa Super Bowl ad starring Jeff Bezos

Ask Engadget: Whats the best way to unify my music collection?

You can buy this 3D printed car next year for $53,000

Local Motorsrecently held a contest to build a roadworthy car using (mostly) 3D-printing techniques, and the winner,crowned in July, is the vehicle you see above. We now know that itll be called the LM3D Swim and cost $53,000, with pre-sales launching in spring of 2016 and retail sales later in the year. If an unknown company building an all-new vehicle using an untested manufacturing technique doesnt sound risky enough, theres another catch, too. Sales will launch on Indiegogo, so early adopters will also need to gamble on crowdfunding.

That said, the company has a history of building carsquicklyand hasworked with DARPAin the past. It has already built the LM3D prototype, saying the Swim design was chosen on July 7th, and the build was completed on September 18th. However, it still hasnt chosen an automotive partner for the production vehicles powertrain and chassis. Though all vehicles will get the same powertrain, youll be able to choose from a wide range of customizable, aesthetic features that are only possible through DDM and 3D printing, according to the company. It hasnt confirmed whether itll offer removable panels, however, like it suggested earlier.

Its also unclear exactly when the vehicles will be delivered, though Local Motors said that crash tests wont take place until the end of 2016, meaning certification isnt likely until 2017. The company is planning on building about 2,400 vehicles a year, depending on demand. If youd like to get your hands on whats bound to be a unique vehicle and can afford the risk, stay tuned for more details next year. If youd rather spend the $50,000-plus elsewhere, you can also get asingle pair of headphones.

Prince Alwaleed bin Talal was arrested on allegations of corruption.

It would have been a notable improvement… if it hadnt been cancelled.

The company might not need movie stars to sell you an Echo.

No need to pull your hair out trying to win again and again.

You might run your own robot park… hopefully minus the bloodshed.

2017 Consumer FDM 3D Printer Buying Guide

Buying the right FDM 3D Printer is easy once you know what to look for. As you may know, FDM is short for Fused deposition modeling. This is the most common consumer 3D printer you can buy. Here we look at the key factors to consider when choosing the right FDM 3D printer for you.

An FDM 3D printer uses Filament applied layer by layer to create 3D objects in the physical world. Objects can be printed using a wide variety of filament materials. These printers can print using filaments such as Plastic, which is the most common, to woods, and even some metals.

Now lets take a look at exactly how tochoose the best FDM 3D Printer.

There are a few key specs to look for when buying a consumer 3D printer. Here they are listed below in no particular order. All are important in there own right. What you plan to make with your 3D printer will help you figure out the most important spec for your needs.

The area where the printer prints the 3D objects, also called the build area, determines the 3D printed objects maximum size. This is less impoartant for those wanting to print object like jewelry. A 3D printers maximum build area is more important forrapid prototyping uses.

If you like things fast, then the time it takes for your 3D object to print is important to you. The printing speeds of consumer 3D printers has a wide range. So it is key that you look for an FDM 3D printers maximum printing speed when buying one.

The filament that is available for your 3D printer will determine what materials you can 3D print. For Example, if you want to 3D print using a wood or even glass.

How you plan to connect your 3D Printer should be considered. Take a look at your space and think about how you will connect, and which connections you have.

The layer resolultion is the thickness of each layer of filament that is applied during 3D printing. This helps to determain the3D printed objects strength.

When buying a 3D printer, you may want to consider the size the extruder nozzle. Theextruder nozzlediameter is the size of the hole that the filament flows out of when 3D printing.

multiple extruders on your 3D printer will allow you to print using more that one filament at once. This very important went printing detailed complex designs that may require a support filament. Multiple extruders also allow you to 3D print objects using multiple colors.

Top 8 Consumer FDM 3D Printer Comparison Guide 2017

PLA / ABS / HIPS / PVA / Wood / Nylon / Polycarbonate

Bibo2 Touch 3D Printer with Laser Engraver

QIDI Technology X-One 3D Printer Review

da Vinci miniMaker 3D Printer Review

Anycubic Upgraded Full Metal i3 Mega 3D Printer Review

Creality CR-10S S5 3D Printer Review

da Vinci miniMaker 3D Printer Review Basics As you may expect, this affordable printers specs

Anycubic Upgraded Full Metal i3 Mega 3D Printer Review Basics The Anycubic i3 Megas specs

Creality CR-10S S5 3D Printer Review Basics The CR-10 series of 3D printers all have

Robo C2 Review Basics Falling firmly in the mini 3D printer category, the Robo C2

HICTOP CR-10S 3D Printer Review Basics The CR-10Ss specifications are almost identical to the CR-10.

FlashForge Creator Pro vs Sindohs DP200 3DWOX Comparison Professional print quality meets rugged design and

FlashForge Finder vs XYZprinting da Vinci Mini Comparison Cheap, easy to use, and small enough

Monoprice Select Mini vs FlashForge Finder Comparison As two of the most inexpensive and user

FlashForge Creator Pro vs. Qidi TECH 1 Comparison Youd be forgiven for thinking the Flashforge

It may seem like an easy choice since one printer has 4x the build space