What a disappointment


#1

Knowing that supply & support for even the new shiny form 3 or 3L will be discontinued with in less than 5 years from now like form 1+, I won’t be buying any of the printers from Formlabs anymore. There were times when I felt like I can justify the money spent on form 1+, but now I regret buying it.

The least you guys should do is to publish a official list of third party suppliers that produce compatible resin tanks and resin. So the next person who contact to customer service won’t be hearing rubbish response like “oh, search / post on our forum for answers!”


#2

yeah- good luck with that, Ed. I think you’ll find every other printer you can buy LESS well supported for SHORTER periods of time.

I know companies that bought $250,000 dollar printers that they can’t get parts for 3 years later. Others whose printers use a material that is nor linger made by anyone.

Equipment on the front edge of new technologies has a short half life. Lots of folks don’t think twice about replacing their smart phone every year. At a thousand bucks a pop- buying a new SLA printer every 4 years is no different than buying a new iPhone every year.

how often do you buy a new or used Car?

We went thru 3 washing machines in ten years- because when they break, its usually cheaper to buy a New one than fix the broken one.


#3

Sculptingman,
Thank you for your reply.
I am not even complaining about maintenance parts when my form 1+ breaks.
This is about crucial supply parts like Resin tanks / Resin which is crucial to keep printing, and not so great customer service related to it. This is more like cutting off ways to charge your phone a year after you buy your phone, while your phone is still perfectly functional.
I do agree that front edge of new tech cost money. But I still think we as a customer who chose Formlabs before myriads of other manufacturers deserve better than this.


#4

No offense, but your post is a typical example of “it is even worse there and there”, which doesn’t help to solve any problems, at all. On the contrary, it gives the people and companies that could solve the problem and could make things better if they wanted to an excuse not to do it.


#5

That is complete bullshit.

Our first 2 3d printers that we have bought from other brands prior to the Form 2 still has great support and they’re going strong for a 5+ year old printers. FormLabs is the first company and the first product that we have bought from a company that has completed disappointed us in this regard.

Simply put, all they care about is their bottom line and they don’t care about their users.

Do a simple search on Google and you’ll find ALL of the horrible stories from late shipments to countless broken sensors on their Form 2 machines with FormLabs replacing their customer’s brand new machines with refurbished ones because they can’t seem to get it together when it comes to quality assurance. On top of that, they’ll continue to design their machines with wasteful resin tanks because why not milk their customers by nickeling and diming them with every single thing that they can try and get a way with.

I would not be surprise if they start “engineering” new resins to only “work” with their Form 3 printers.

Form 2 is the last SLA printer we’ll ever buy from FormLabs or from anyone really because FormLabs has ruined the SLA printing experience for us. Yes, we do sound a bit pretentious but dropping $3499 for a printer that will only have a 2-3 year support is unacceptable to some of us.

We can’t speak for everyone here in this forum but I and everyone here at my company surely are disappointed with how FormLabs handled themselves and the type of product they’ve shipped. If FormLabs as a company even care about their users, the previous statement should at the very least mean something to them.

Going forward, there has been some good advancement in DLP printing and there are a lot of companies that do understand the maker movement community that have been making good progress with DLP printing. I suspect that DLP will be our next big move.


#6

They sure will, but not because of an evil scheme to milk customers. The new peeling mechanism will allow more freedom in designing new resins which would not support the peeling forces of the Form 2.

Completely understand that point of view. however I think it’s obvious Formlabs isn’t making, pricing and advertising their printers as a maker/hobbyist machine but rather for wealthy prosumers/professional clients who want a reliable machine that just works (granted : sensors issues and so on… but even with that it’s still about the easiest/most user-friendly 3D printer under 50’000 bucks)

I’m also completely with you regarding the support period and the fact that they should at least continue to provide critical accessories and spare parts to keep the printer working. But to make that argument heard it is important to not try to emphasise it with completely, less defendable and less important issues.

If you want to stay in the SLA game with an open, maker-friendly machine and not use a DLP (IMO the real good DLP machines are still very expensive and cheaper ones are 1/not better than LCD and 2/difficult to self-repair), look at Peopoly’s Moai…


#7

you must mean filament printer.

SLA printers are a different animal- Can you name a comparable printer to the Form 2 that is 5 years old and is still supported?

Good luck with DLP- they are just as slow- with poorer resolution. And while they have fewer moving parts, I have yet to see one that offers the level of automation that the Form 2 offers. I just haven’t got the time to be topping off tanks and stirring resin vats by hand.

Don’t imagine you represent the entire “Maker Community”. I’ve been making stuff for 45 years- but then I don’t do it as a ‘hobby’.
The Form 2 is NOT marketed as a “Maker Community” printer, but as a prosumer printer. You can buy Prosumer filament printers, too- and they run around 4 grand as well- they work better than cheap hobby machines- and run more exotic filaments, too- but I still would not expect one of those to be supported for more than 4 years or so, Either- because the companies that make them aren’t selling them in volume- and the folks buying them are experienced enough to understand that new technologies mean they will WANT to replace the machine in 4 years, just to stay current.
So I guess the difference between “maker” and “prosumer” is that a prosumer understands what he’s buying.

Yeah- so I get that y’all are all incensed… but to me that just sounds like the noises kids make when they finally find out how the world actually works.
If you are surprised and outraged that a company on the cutting edge of new technologies keeps on developing newer versions and abandoning older products then you must not ever have bought a smart phone. Or a computer. Or a video game console.

Me, I spent 20 years having to buy all new computer equipment and upgrade software every few years just so I could keep opening the files my clients sent, or send them files they would be able to open.

So gahead and buy a chinese made DLP printer. And then come back 4 years later and tell me how well supported it is.


#8

Don’t imagine you represent the entire “Maker Community”.

And neither do you. No one cares you’ve been making stuff for 45 years.

I have yet to see one that offers the level of automation that the Form 2 offers.

Not everyone wants automation. Just because things are more automated does not make it a good product. We just want things to work properly and continue to work properly if we’re going to invest money into a machine. When you’ve got a machine that is not only unreliable but one is going to be unsupported just because it’s one version behind, for example – the vats on the Form 1+, you’ve got an expensive brick at that point.

but to me that just sounds like the noises kids make when they finally find out how the world actually works.

Oh brother. Is that really necessary? Why do you have to drive the conversation/debate there?

a company on the cutting edge of new technologies keeps on developing newer versions and abandoning older products then you must not ever have bought a smart phone. Or a computer. Or a video game console.

Yes that’s true about companies developing newer versions of their technology but most companies offer something called backwards compatibility. Just because a newer version of your phone was released doesn’t mean you absolutely have to buy it. You have the option to either still use the older phone or you buy the newer one. Take a look at Android phones for example, do they immediately lock you out once a newer version of their OS is released? No, they don’t. They still offer it for older devices and gracefully deprecate it later on. Even then when it’s no longer supported you can still use your phone. You have that option. Even when you buy a truck or a van for your business. When car manufacturers produces a newer model, does that mean you can no longer drive your vehicle? Of course not!

So gahead and buy a chinese made DLP printer. And then come back 4 years later and tell me how well supported it is.

I can make that same argument with FormLabs. Here watch; go ahead and spend $10,000 on that Form 3L and come back in 4 years later and tell me how well they’re supporting it.


#9

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