How to Pick the Right 3D Printer As a Novice


How to Pick the Right 3D Printer As a Novice?

When we watch some videos of 3d printing that we feel 3d printers are interesting and thus the idea of purchase. As a person who has no base knowledge with it, We should how to do that? Picking it is not as simple as choosing a bar of soap or a cup. If you have an engineering background or you can make a quick judgment. As a novice, We should pick a suitable machine for us from those sides?

Price is one of the primary reasons for the choice of most users. You can start from market share and the machine structure to choose a suitable machine for newcomers after excluding the price factor. Such as the printing molding technology of printers on the market, machine specification, and the main components of the machine.

What printing molding technology does the 3d printer have?

We need first to understand what technology most printer manufacturers on the market use for their machines. When we search Amazon, we will find that most of the devices use FDM molding technology and LCD molding technology. The molding principle and parameter specifications are different. There are mainly the following differences:

1.1 Working Process

FDM molding technology is generally thermoplastic material, such as PLA, ABS, Nylon, etc. The material is supplied in the filament. The material is heated and melted inside the printhead, which moves along the part’s cross-sectional profile and filling trajectory while extruding the melted material, which rapidly solidifies and thickens with the surrounding material—filaments as its being the primary material used. If you own a printer, the cost of filament will be one of the main costs.

LCD molding technology is the light source through the concentrating mirror to evenly distribute the light source. The matrix lens shines the light vertically onto the MONO screen. The UV light passes through the transparent film to the liquid light-curing resin, causing the resin irradiated by the UV light to produce a curing reflection, and the irradiated liquid resin becomes solid.

1.2 Build Volume and Printing Accuracy

FDM device are not limited to the frame, there are many different build volume machines on the market, and more than 500mm we usually call large appliances, many sellers to save shipping fee, many large size machines are generally divided into several packages shipped, and it needs to be assembled. But the role of light-curing printers is to make the light shine vertically on the MONO screen, making the resin curing. So the size of the print will be limited by the size of the MONO screen, which is fragile, and the shipping and storage requirements of the resin are higher than the consumables. It sounds like using the LCD cost of the printer seems more elevated than the FDM printer. Let us explore.

FDM is about 0.20mm, while LCD is generally at 0.01-0.1mm. From this, we can see that LCD printing accuracy is higher than FDM. But excluding the advantages of the machine itself, printing accuracy also depends on many aspects. The former depends on whether the slicing software, whether the leveling, Z offset, fallback set, print speed, etc. And the latter depends on the UV resin, exposure time, printing speed, MONO screen resolution, etc.

According to the market feedback, FDM’s big machines are more prevalent in Europe and the United States because big machines are more challenging to assemble. They already own a 3d printer before they repurchase a big machine. It seems that large machines are more popular with veterans. LCD in the Japanese market is widely acclaimed because it can achieve higher precision, more suitable for making handicrafts or for some handicraft production.

What are the main parameters of the 3d printer?

Through the above, we already have a basic understanding of print molding technology. IN Amazon or other third-party platforms, you will find that the machine appearance features, etc. are substantially similar. From the machine parameters, choosing a more suitable machine is one of the most relevant aspects. The printer’s regular functions are Filament Run-Out Detection and Resume Printing Function. And the main parameters are build volume, print accuracy, connection method, print material, etc.

1.1 Build Volume

Large print size means that you can print the model bigger, and the MONO screen limits LCD. The large model of LCD 3d printer has to be separated into several slices file to print.

1.2 Printing Accuracy

We have already mentioned above the accuracy that FDM and LCD can achieve. Generally, the smaller the printing accuracy, the more delicate the printed model will be. Regardless of the type of printer, there will be a market for it. For example, FDM is more favored by the American market, while the Japanese market more accepts LCD.

1.3 Connection Method

The standard connection methods on the market are the TF card and USB-B methods. Still, a new connection method is already on the rise, which is the U disk method. The offline connection method is more secure—All you need to do is copy the STL file on a USB stick, insert it into the device, and select Print.

1.4 Printing Materials

Regular materials are PLA/TPU/PETG. Where TPU is a flexible consumable, whether you can play flexible consumables depends on the extruder. For example, Titan extruder and BMG extruder are supported. And light-curing uses a resin of 405 wavelengths.

What are the main components of the 3d printer?

The main machine components of the FDM machine are a print head part, hotbed, extruder, mainboard, power supply, filament detector The main features of the LCD machine are MONO screen, lamp source (lamp plate + lens), mainboard, release film, Z guide. When we get a new device, these are the essential items to check with the manual.

What are the top 10 brand manufacturers?

Top 10 Model of FDM 3D Printer

Creality Ender 3 PRO
Anycubic MEGA PRO
Voxelab Aquila

Top 10 Model of LCD 3D Printer

ANYCUBIC Photon Mono

You will find that there are already some brands of both technologies are doing, which shows that these two technologies are the most common types on the market, and their prices are on average between $200-$400, most consumers can afford the range, and the machine has a long service life. So Do you already want to buy the device?

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