Ultimaker 3D printer and three rolls of filament.

Should You Buy A 3D Printer?

Face it – 3D printing is becoming huge in 2015. But, like a piece of old cheese in your fridge, it can either be your next Roquefort, or something that once getting into you will regret immediately. Buying a 3D printer and its accompanying equipment is certainly not cheap, or quick to learn. So in this post I’ll be giving you the reasons why you should buy one today, or throw that idea into the trash like the aforementioned cheese.

 

All aboard the hype train

Choo choo.
Choo choo. via Windows

Hype is a strange thing. You might be thinking that 3D printers are going to become more popular than the internet due to its recent media exposure, but the truth is that hype only works if you know exactly what you’re doing. New exercising equipment, new recipe books, that new 3D curved TV in your lounge. It might seem like a good idea at the time, but just because everyone else is jumping off a bridge, it doesn’t mean you should too. A 3D printer is not cheap, so time and effort must first be made before buying one.

Something as simple as buying the filament can get costly, so maybe also look into getting a filament extruder such as our NEXT 1.0 if you think you’ll really enjoy 3D printing. Do lots of research into the uses of 3D printing, and determine if you can see it aiding your career or even becoming your most cherished hobby.

 

Now I Can Make Toys To Show My Friends

Just wait till all my friends see this.
Just wait until all my friends see this. via funnyjunk

A 3D Printer is definitely not a gimmick. You (and especially your friends and family) are going to become real tired of you saying, “Hey look at this (object) I made” every time you make the same clothes peg or spoon. If you are going to make it a hobby of yours, make it a proper hobby. I’ve seen way too many people buying a 3D printer, only for it to gather dust as they couldn’t be bothered to try new creations. Just like any hobby, 3D printing will take time and effort, so make sure you can first afford a decent machine as well as set time aside to produce some quality works of art.

On the other hand, if you are buying one for your business, you need to avoid making objects that you think will increase sales. “If I make this 3D-printed donut, we’ll be rich” will not your aspiring bakery career, so first do your research into what careers benefit from 3D printers.

I Have No Idea What I’m Doing

Nailed it.
Nailed it. via Secured3D

Yes, a 3D printer is just one device that you can place on your table and then start printing till your heart’s content. But the thing is – and it’s the reason why so many people get a 3D printer in the first place – is that you can modify or create your own 3D models. If you have no idea how to use 3D-modelling software on your computer, then a 3D printer could end up being a waste of money.

The first thing you’ll probably do is print all the neat objects out there on the internet, but the fun will die off quickly. Next you’ll want to start designing objects that you have designed, and without proper knowledge, it can get extremely time and money consuming. Be prepared by doing as much research as you can, before you buy a 3D printer to know what software you’ll want to use and exactly how to use it.

Conclusion

3D printing is still in the early phases, so mistakes will happen and things will go wrong. However, the first step is knowing that a 3D printer is going to suit your needs. So rather save time, and of course money, and prepare yourself fully before making the investment.  Don’t just do it because you want one thing you saw on the internet, do it because you can see yourself making new objects from scratch in a few months time and will help make 3D printing become your number one passion/career opportunity.

3 replies
  1. mel
    mel says:

    Definitely check out Zeus by AIO Robotics, I am very happy with it and its an all in one printer and scanner with fully installed software

      • mel
        mel says:

        I know! I love it so much.. the easiest 3d device I have ever used and the quality of printouts and scans is amazing too

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