Noob Form 1 Questions

Getting ready to pull the trigger on the Form 1 but have some noob questions.

Currently using Shapeways for SLS printing for models but looking forward to bringing this in-house to save on cost (?) and increase speed.

I know the resins are where Formlabs makes the money, question I have is: what size model can you create with 1 liter of resin?

Also, once you pour the resin in, I’m guessing you do not end up using all of it. What happens to the extra resin? Can you re-use it? Pour it back in the bottle? Leave it in the tray?

Looking for some cost analysis for this printer with respect to resin, since the Formlabs resin is really the only one you should use with this printer.

1ml = 1cm3, so theoretically a cube of 10x10x10cm would be what you would be able to print with 1 liter (without supports).

The rest of your questions are answered here:
Check it thoroughly so you know what to do.

Quick question from me though…; Shouldn’t you have done this sort of research before you bought the Form1? Or am I interpreting this wrong and haven’t you ordered the Form 1 yet?

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Have not bought the Form 1 yet

Good :slight_smile:

Check the troubleshooting and support page and you’ll be a lot wiser. Check the forum for possible formlabs resin replacements, but I would start of using just the Formlabs resin to get to know the printer properly.

If you have any other questions after reading the support page, don’t hesitate to ask!

Don’t forget your supports when it comes to resin consumption. If you have small or thin parts, the support could be 50% or more of resin used to make the part. Bulkier parts tend to drop it down into the 10-25% range. Despite that, you will still blow Shapeways away in terms of cost and speed.

Also, do not dismiss 3rd party resins. The FormLabs stuff is amazing for high detail parts. But if you need strength and a little bit of flex, because your clients want to play scientist and see if they can break your parts, I recommend the Vorex resin.

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If you haven’t already downloaded our PreForm software, I’d recommend trying it out. You can import your model, orient, and generate support support structures. You’ll get estimates for resin consumption (with and without supports) and print time.


Please read this thread since it is very related to your costs question:

Hello @Alex_Vermeer,

but Nicolas seems think he’s competing in a niche market and can charge a lot for his hours.

You may well know that my fees are not the discussion topic here and should know that publicly posting something that has been shared in private is not very polite so I would kindly ask you to edit your post. :wink:

Anyway… for what I charge per hour I also did a very detailed cost calculation and the result is what I have to charge if I don’t want to go out of business. I am in a niche market, I’m very good at what I do and with 15 years of experience my fees are extremely competitive and my clients are very happy for the value I create.

€X,- would be fine if people contact you directly

I’m in the business of Industrial Design consulting, so yes, people does contact me directly. I’m not a 3D printing house, where I agree you would end up racing to the bottom with your prices in order to compete with other same same services.

I had to do this calculation sheet to figure out how to fairly charge clients for prints I might do during a product design project. I think that given the confidentiality and speed advantage (compared with other 3D printing services), the final cost is still very competitive.

So in that case… I think “costs” is the wrong word to use

I respectfully disagree. Your own time or your employees time should also be taken into consideration in the cost calculation and I’m also separating between “Cost of this print” and FINAL COST. I did this mainly to know what was the cost of doing prints for personal projects where I would not be counting my own time or wanting to have a return over the investment, but I could have a very clear idea about what is really costing my out of my pocket.

The OP is also talking about bringing the 3D printing in-house, therefore they will be spending employee time that so far is not a cost to consider because the labor is being outsourced.

It is your decision to charge whatever you want, but my goal was to let the OP know that there are a lot more factors to consider than just the cost of resin as it had only been discussed so far.



My apologies @Nicolas_Gonzalez_Gar, you’re absolutely right! Shouldn’t have done that. Though, for the record, I did not base these calculations on your calcution-cost-sheet. I just did a quick match calculation based on the info in your quote. But again, you’re right about going off-topic and my post didn’t add any value whatsoever for Kay. So. I apologise for the somewhat inconsiderate post.

It’s a good thing that you’re making him consider all factors involved to make an adequate decision. So to get back on topic:

@Kay_M, It’s going to be difficult to compete with companies such as Shapeways and 3DHubs as these websites attract the “unknowing” market who just want to pay the cheapest price for their product being printed. Therefore, competing in this market is not what you want to do. Creating your own niche market in your area, like @Nicolas_Gonzalez_Gar has succesfully managed, will help you enjoy your 3D printing experience much more. Nicolas has some fair points on the other “costs” you might need to consider!

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