Re-couping $ using printer downtime

Our schedule for our Form 2 so far for the 4 months we’ve had it is about 10 days of printing, then sending off prototypes to our clients. Then the printer sits for 20 days or so unused. This seems like a bit of a waste to me…

Have any of you made any kind of side business printing pieces for others during your printer’s downtime? How/Where did you advertise? How do you come up with a price quote (based off time or ml of resin)?

  • Kevin

3D Hubs is a popular place to advertise your printer’s spare cycles.

It’s focused on matching up local folks with printers in their area, and the Form 1 & 2 tend to be pretty popular – most of the machines being advertised are FDM, so you can stand out among folks looking for high-detail prints.


I find 3dhubs to be a bit of a time waste, in terms of pricing I charge a flat rate for materials, plus a flat rate for print time which incorporates an element of incurred costs (machine depreciation and replacing tanks).

Thanks @MattKeeter for the recommendation, I have signed up…we’ll see how it goes.

@JasonSpiller I too have found sites such as these to be promising at first, then a waste of time in the long run. Over the years I have used sites such as for other professional services with no success. At this point it was just a few hours out of my day to set up the profile and verify all of my info. If it comes to nothing then I haven’t lost much :slight_smile:

  • Kevin

3Dhubs does make it tough to stay competitive with those of you lucky enough to be picking up side jobs locally or from your own websites. Their charge is 12.5% of the job price and it’s difficult to adjust pricing if you need to work a complicated deal with your customer.

I do have to admit, the 3DHubs free estimate tools are top notch and I think the ability to get an estimate on the website is a significant part of what drives people to actually place an order. If I could figure out how to emulate that as well as drive local and web traffic more consistently, I would close my 3Dhubs account, but as of now, it’s driving the majority of my clients to me so it stays.