Get a price estimate on a 3D Print
First, here are some 3D Printer Frequently Asked Questions
I have an object in the real world that I want duplicated, can a 3D printer do that?
There are various types of 3D scanners that can scan an object in real life and turn it into a 3D model file that can be printed. How accurate they are depends mainly on the type of scanner and the object being scanned. If you have a real life object you want scanned and printed, talk to us about it, and we'll figure out what the best way to do that might be. In certain cases, it can be better to take measurements from a real life object and use that as a basis to create the object from scratch in a 3D modeling software.
How does a 3D Printer know what to print?
A 3D model file on a computer must first be created, which is then fed to a separate piece of software that turns that into instructions that a 3D printer understands.
There are hundreds of different types of 3D modeling software tools out there, and almost any of them will work for printing. These software tools range from free to thousands of dollars.
If you'd like to begin learning to 3D model, I'd recommend checking out the free software: SketchUp or Autodesk's 123D Design.
I have a photograph or 2-dimensional drawing of something, can that be printed?
No, a 3D printer requires a 3D model file to print, which is very different than any 2-dimensional media.
But if you have extensive blueprint type drawings with measurements, we might be able to create a 3D model file for you based on that. But keep in mind that 3D modeling is a very time consuming process so we will need to charge a lot more for such work.
Can a 3D Printer print in different colors?
Some 3D Printers can print in a full range of colors, but these printers are still extremely expensive. Most of the printers we use (the ones that people are typically talking about when they mention 3D printers) only result in one single color; what ever color filament you put into it, that's the color that comes out.
The filament is available in almost any color though, and prints can easily be painted once they are done printing.
We do have one printer that can print in two different colors, which can result in something like this: 2-Color Print, although sometimes the filament of one color can drip into spots it shouldn't, resulting in a print with spots of incorrect color in various places.
What type of material does a 3D Printer use to print?
Most 3D printers just work with a few different types of plastics. The most common being ABS and PLA. We do have a few printers capable of printing higher temp, stronger plastics such as PET and Nylon. We prefer to use PLA plastic for our prints because it is the easiest to work with, the least toxic, and warps less than other plastics. It is technically not as strong as ABS, but most people would not be able to tell any difference between the two.
How long does a 3D Printer take to print something?
It depends on the size, complexity, resolution, and amount of infill of the object being printed. But to give you a rough idea, something the size of a coffee cup could take anywhere from 5 to 10 hours to print.
If you DO NOT have a 3D model file, but would like to have something printed...
Then send an email to Chris at firstname.lastname@example.org with as much information as possible about what it is you'd like printed.
If you have any drawings, sketches, photos of what the thing is, please attach them to the email.
If you DO have a 3D model file that is ready to be printed...
Please read the following important instructions:
We generally charge by the amount of time it will take to print, starting at about $15 for small things and going up in price from there.
Make sure your 3D modeling software's units are set to Millimeters.
We have a number of different 3D printers, the largest one having a print size of 254mm x 177mm x 152mm. If your print needs to be larger than that size, we can discuss breaking the print into multiple parts that can be attached later.
We'd prefer to have files that are in STL format, but if your 3D modeling software does not have that as an export option, we can work with other formats too.
If your print consists of multiple pieces, please export each piece as a separate STL file.
We mostly use PLA plastic for our prints. It is the easiest to work with, the least toxic, and warps less than other plastics. If you think you need your print to be done with a different type of plastic, let us know and we can discuss other options.
Please let us know if you have a preference on the color of filament.
Once your print is finished, we welcome you to come pick it up from our shop ( 564 Gravenstein Highway North, Sebastopol ) during our regular business hours ( Monday - Saturday: 10AM - 7PM; Sunday: 10AM - 5PM )
If you wish us to ship the print to you, you will be charged for the shipping costs.