How many printers does one should own?


#1

Greetings everyone!
Just out of curiosity, how many printers do you have?
I for example have 2 - an old Form2 and a Form3 which are running 2 different materials (so I won’t have to handle the resin too much…).


#2

We’ve got 5 FDM printers, 4 of which run 8+ hours per day, and a single Form 3 that I haven’t really been impressed wtih.


#3


#4

I would definitely use more than 1 if I’d had enough space.

BTW If you use 2 different materials with 2 separate printers they both have to be “high runners” as the resin tank has a limited lifetime.
My colleague thought about using one for Grey pro and the other for the 50A and found himself maintaing and replacing the 50A resin tank before he even used the first 50A cartridge.


#5

I’ve got a Form 1+, Form 2, Form 3 and Form 3L. It’s too many ;-). But it is definitely handy having at least two - I find being able to run staggered, simultaneous jobs helps keep me more productive when I’m iterating designs.

If you have multiple tanks changing resins is easy (and multiple build platforms makes it even easier). I wouldn’t keep additional printers around if the only motivation was to avoid swapping materials.


#6

I’ve an f2 for three years and a Saturn for a few months, I’m looking at these cheap chinese ones because I have no intention of switching to F3.


#7

Makerbot Replicator Dual (my first, bought back in 2012ish)
Robo3D R2
Form1+
Form3 (traded in a Form2)
Taig 4 axis benchtop CNC
BlueChick 3 axis gantry style CNC (bigger work area than the Taig, but not capable of cutting metal)
GlowForge laser cutter

I’m waiting for delivery of a new belt type FDM printer. Infinitely long prints. I can print model airplane wings and fuselages as single pieces.

I’ve been “jonsin’” for a Wazer water jet cutter, but the cost of consumables is much too high (it consumes a pound of garnet per minute of operation. They recommend you purchase it on a 2 Ton pallet).

And I was looking at vacuum forming machines last night. Might be a worthy addition to my at-home makerspace. There’s a kickstarter for one that seemed pretty interesting.

And I have also been thinking about a 4-axis hot wire foam cutter. I can use that to cut model airplane wings and fuselages, too. Will have to wait to see how light+robust I can make these things out of plastic, first.


#8

@Randy_Cohen I’ve got a small Mayku vacuum forming machine and it’s not bad. I hear they’re working on a larger, professional unit that should be launched soon.


#9

have you looked at the “ProtoMax” by OMAX, I don’t know the cost offhand but I know we chose it over the Wazer and we use it a lot. it really makes a difference not having to have parts machined.


#10

we have a “Centroform” vacuum that is about 24 x 16 & I print the forms with FDM in a sparse fill setting & it makes great prototypes


#11

The protomax is like 50K. A great machine if you can afford it, used to have an omax machine at my last job.

The best desktop vacuum forming machine imo is the Vaquform. Blows the mayku out of the water.