The one thing 3D printing has accomplished is to democratize the manufacturing process so even the smallest business or individual can start making things. Whether it is a part for an existing item, or designing and making an entire product, a 3D printer makes it possible.
However, finding the right printer can be a task in itself because the market is full of 3D printers. By first identifying your industry, materials, size, and production capacity, you can start choosing the right printer.
This list has the best 3D printer for your business across the very same criteria mentioned above.
Best 3D Printer for Your Business
- Top Pick: MakerGear M2
- Runner Up: Ultimaker 2+ 3D Printer
- Best Value: FlashForge 3D Printer
Top Pick: With a large build volume MakerGear is made from CNC-machined precision hardware on a rigid fabricated steel frame. It has the capability to print items from ABS, PLA, PET, flexible and other filaments through an SD card reader and USB port. And it also comes with open-source electronics and firmware. It has an 80 – 200 mm/sec printing speed with 450 mm/sec max and 50 microns to 0.25mm with a 0.35mm nozzle.
MakerGear M2 Desktop 3D Printer
Ultimaker 2+ 3D Printer
Runner Up: This printer has much newer versions so take that into consideration if you buy this brand. The print quality on this printer is high with print nozzles at 0.25, 0.4, 0.6, and 0.8 mm. It supports PLA, ABS, and CPE filament with travel speeds of 30 mm/s – 300 mm/s. The type of file types it supports are STL, OBJ, DAE.
FlashForge 3D Printer
Best Value: The price of this 3D printer is lower, but it still delivers great value. First, the company offers a full manufactures warranty, which is not always the case. A metal frame and platform ensure steady printing with PLA, ABS, PLA Color Change, Pearl, ABS Pro, Elastic, PVA, HIPS, as well as wood and other filaments.
FlashForge 3D Printer Creator Pro, Metal Frame Structure, Acrylic Covers, Optimized Build Platform
MakerBot Replicator + 3D Printer
MakerBot is an innovator in the industry. This particular printer works with PLA as well as other materials such as bronze-fill, copper-fill, and wood- fill. The software side provides from WIFI connectivity to an onboard streaming camera, smart sensors in the extruder, and an automated Z-homing build plate with cloud-enabled management. The MakerBot extruder is tested for 16,000 cumulative hours.
MakerBot Replicator + 3D Printer, with swappable Smart Extruder+,
Dremel DigiLab 3D45
This Dremel printer is internally tested by Bosch for 800+ hours for safety and performance and 3rd party tested by UL. You can use PLA, PETG, ECO-ABS and Nylon filaments on an automated 9-point leveling system. A built-in HD camera lets you or your customers see the process and the cloud-based software supports multiple platforms. The connectivity includes Wi-Fi, Ethernet.
Dremel DigiLab 3D45 Award Winning 3D Printer w/Filament
The full metal support this printer provides ensures a steady surface with a double Z-axis to print PLA, ABS, TPU, along with Nylon, Carbon fiber, PC and other materials. A 5” touch screen allows you to carry out precision printing with two sets of the Qidi Tech third-generation extruder assembly.
QIDI TECH Large Size Intelligent Industrial Grade 3D Printer
BIBO 3D Printer
The BIBO printer is known for its ease of use by beginners and its reliability. This unit comes with a touch screen to control the functions and dual extruders to print two projects at the same time along with two-color printing. The filaments it supports include ABS, PLA, Dissolvable filament (HIPS), Flexible filament (TPU), PETG, Nylon, PC, Carbon fiber, and more. And the connectivity includes SD card, USB drive, USB, WiFi.
BIBO 3D Printer Dual Extruder Sturdy Frame WiFi Touch Screen Cut Printing
Features to Consider When Buying a 3D Printer
- Print Quality: The quality of the output from your printer will determine what you can print. This is especially the case for detailed and custom parts.
- Speed: The speed of printers varies greatly. And if time is of the essence, find out how long it takes to fully print products of different sizes and intricacies. Try to find printers with a speed of 50mm/sec.
- Size: The size of the printer is going to dictate how big the output will be. Consider the specs in its entirety to see the limitations.
- Materials: Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) and Poly Lactic Acid (PLA) are the go-to filaments. However, now you can get everything from food to metals.
- Reliability: 3D printers work many hours, so reliability is absolutely essential. Find out the type of warranty the company provides along with return policies.
- Software: A 3D printer requires software, this includes third-party applications to design, share and even print. Find out the kind of updates the company provides.
Small businesses now have more opportunities than ever to prototype and create new products or improve on an old design in their office because of 3D printing. The price, quality and technology of these devices run the gamut, so take your time and choose carefully.
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He has a background in information and communications technology coordination.