As you shop for your 3D printer, also check out service bureaus

We got asked repeatedly at the NYC Maker Faire last month, “Which 3D printer do you think I should buy?”At 3D Roundhouse, although we will be getting new printers in 2016, we currently use the Up Plus 2, which is branded as the Afinia in the USA. It’s s solid piece of technology and we find it generally reliable. Of course, because these printers are still considered being in their early stages, there are some issues that you need to deal with, such as warping when there is a draft in the room. But from our point of view of making 3D printing a new type of family entertainment, we think it does a pretty good job. Certainly, my daughter really loves it when I make a new magic wand.E with Magic Wands            But getting back to the question of which 3D printer to buy, like anything else, it makes sense to shop around. Because there is a learning curve when using it for the first time, we recommend you find a vendor who is there to support you after you buy it.In the meantime, we also think you should check out “service bureaus” or places that offer 3D printing service. Here are some examples.

1. Shapeways

2. 3DHubs3. UPSService bureaus can offer you a wide variety of materials to choose from, from simple plastics to even precious metals, and the number of choices is growing each month. They have access to desktop as well as industrial 3D printers - so depending on your budget - you can make something simple or very special for your family.So as you look into buying your 3D printer, also have a look at these service bureaus. They can also help you as you explore 3D printing with your family! 

EnglishDavid SetoComment