The best 3d printer filaments for the best price, is it a fairy tale?

With the exponential growth of the desktop 3d printing scene, even more and more hobbyists and makers are looking for the cheapest plastic filaments for their self-built or out-of-the-box 3d printer. If you google ‘em, you can easily realize that you can get the best prices from the far east, but you should know you mostly get what you pay for when it is about the 3d printer filament prices and the material quality.

sculpture design by parametric | art 3d printed with cheap GigamaX3D filaments

sculpture design by parametric | art 3d printed with cheap GigamaX3D filaments

In this entry, I just want to make clear a few things about choosing the optimal 3d printer filament for your needs, depending on what you want to use your 3d printer for. There aren’t any 3d printer filaments for universal use, the maker itself has to decide in every 3d print job which kind of extrudable plastic is the best for the actual needs.

If there were an award for the most innovative desktop machine of the 21st century, it might well go to the desktop 3d printer. These machines, which turn digital designs and virtual 3d models into real physical objects made out of plastic or other materials like 3d printed wood or sandstone, are getting better, faster, simpler and cheaper at such a dizzying pace that it’s not hard to imagine a future in which they’re as pervasive as personal computers or mobile phones. Just think about the beginning of the internet. There are some common points and milestones in their history. And already, you can buy a basic desktop 3d printer for about €450.

building open-source 3d printers

Velleman open-source 3d printers in the GigamaX3D store

But it isn’t the best decision, however, to hung up on the incredible low prices of the 3d printers themselves. Just think about the most common and conventional 2d inkjet printers which need those expensive ink cartridges every month, affordable desktop 3d printers can work with open-source 3d printing materials with the specified diameter and 3d printing guidelines, other work with cartridges using a built-in chip which makes the system closed. Of course, 3d printer filament cartridges are more expensive than the normal PLA, ABS, HIPS or wooden 3d printer materials, although the material is made in the far east in every single case. Although the plastic pellets of the raw 3d printing material is quite cheap, the spools of plastic filament which a 3d printer layers into an object have a huge impact on the long-term economics of 3d printing.

If you don’t want to pay a huge amount of money for expensive, brand-specific 3d printer filaments, you have a lot of opportunities: if you’re a hacker kind of guy, you can produce your own filaments for your 3d printer by purchasing or building a 3d printer filament extruder like the Strooder, Filastruder projects appeared on Kickstarter a couple of months ago. If you don’t want to turn your bedroom into a plastic factory, you can search for the cheapest 3d printer filament suppliers on the web to get the best offer. It can build up some trust if you see a lot of people using the type of 3d printing material you want, it is always good to see the results of other 3d printers using the same plastic material from the same supplier.

We’ve complained about the high price of 3D printing filament, and cheered at the machines that makes filament for the 3d printer out of plastic pellets. Still, the costs of the material for our 3D printers is getting higher and higher, making every hacker and maker searching for the cheapest 3d printer filaments on the internet. Trying to find the best 3d printing filament supplier is always a work in progress. Canvassing suppliers on every continent for 1.75 and 3mm ABS, PLA, HIPS, PVA, Nylon, Conductive, Flexible or wooden 3d printing material for every possible color while accounting for different amounts and spools of filament and shipping is a whole lot of work. Therefore, I’m going to describe it from the european point of view, first starting with how much it will cost somebody like me to get a kilogram of usual 3d printer filament shipped to my door. And this way I only think about local 3d printer suppliers.

3d printed wood

Spiral by Akemake 3d printed with the TImberfill 100% wood 3d printer filament

If you do some research, you might realize that the cheapest spools are from China or the Far East, which means you have to pay the taxes and high shipping costs for your 3d printer filament spools. If you order it with airmail, it is incredible expensive, if you choose the normal transport, it can take months until the package arrives. A fact is a fact: you’d better choose a 3d printer supplier in your neighborhood because you can check the quality and have some warranty for the quality of the product. 3D printing materials aren’t easy to produce, it can be made wrong both overseas and here in Europe. GigamaX3D wants to bring 3D printing accessible to everybody, so that everybody with an idea for a product can turn it into reality. They think that open-source 3d printers like the Velleman K8200 3d printer KIT or the Flashforge Creator desktop 3d printer and cheap 3d printer filaments could help.

In the GigamaX3D 3D print webshop you can find the cheapest 3d printer filaments with a high quality. They also offer premium 3d printing materials for special applications with higher accuracy and strength, but you also can order ABS, PLA, HIPS, PVA, Nylon, Wood, Conductive or Flexible 3d printer filament spools at an incredible low price starting from € 12.70 / 1 kg. The premium filaments are made in the EU by Fillamentum, which is a czech plastic filament manufacturer with the highest quality materials and most beautiful colors. You also can find filaments from the far east, the cheapest spools are made in China by Esun and are widely used with success around the world since it’s one of the most popular 3d printing filaments.

All the chinese and european 3d printer filaments distributed and used by Gigamax 3D printing technology are extruded with inline laser diameter control for guaranteed quality, and have a tolerance in the cross section dimensions better than +/-0.10mm. They just have started a promotion offer, which means, if you place an order above 10 spools (except the discount white PLA) you can get FREE SHIPPING to the EU using the coupon code 10PLA at the checkout! That means, you can get many colors of PLA, ABS, and HIPS 3D PRINTER FILAMENTS for € 16,50 / 1 kg spool with free shipping! In my own opinion, it’s the the cheapest 3d printer filament available in the EU I ever met. But price is one thing, let’s have a look at the quality of the 3d printer filament. PLA and ABS plastics are the most common 3d printing materials, but the devil hide in the detail and it all goes about the diameter accuracy. I can’t test if the given tolerances were true or not but I know a lot of people who are using Gigamax 3D printer filaments with amazing results on different types of 3d printers with FDM technology. An architect/designer and 3d printing enthusiast, who runs parametric | art generative 3d print studio in Hungary works always with the cheapest Esun filaments purchased from GigamaX3D, a girl who makes unique jewelry with a 3d printer mentioned GigamaX as a filament supplier on her blog as well. The universities and high schools use 3d printers and filaments for different use, the technical and material support is mostly provided by the Hungarian 3d printing company.

3d printe sculpture with fine detail

model downloaded from Thingiverse – 3d printed with cheap white PLA 3d printer filament

Just have a look at these 3d printed movie monsters like Diablo, the Terminator, the Alien or the Predator, they all have been 3d printed with the cheapest GigamaX3D PLA 3D printer filament on a Makerbot Replicator 2 desktop 3d printer with default settings! And you can get this cheap PLA 3d printer filament for € 12,70 / 1 kg spool! That sounds irresistible, don’t it?

high quality 3d printer filament

LIMITED OFFER – 1 kg spool white PLA 3d printer filament for € 12.70

Feel free to ask the guys at GigamaX3D, they can tell you everything about the filaments and 3d scanners they offer. They are working on several projects from movies to medical applications, with key point on education and open-source solutions! Do you want to try something new? Check out the special 3d printer filaments or search the blog for useful tips and tricks about 3d printing!

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The K8200: my favorite open-source 3d printer

algorithmicart

Hi there! It’s been a long time since I posted new entry on this 3d printing related blog, I really have to apologize because the last couple of months have been really busy with Gigamax 3D Printing Technology and parametric | art 3d print studio. The two projects did some huge things this summer, you can read about the great 3d printing events in Budapest organized by Design Terminal and Varinex on another blog about 3d printing.

3d print quality of the k8200 3d printer 3d printed on the Velleman 3d printer

Today I’m going to introduce you my favorite affordable 3d printer machine, the Velleman K8200 open-source 3d printer kit which I got from GigamaX3D for testing. The original design of the 3d printer has been developed by Open Electronics under the ‘3Drag’ project name, and they have organized the mass production together with the Belgian DIY giant Velleman company and gave it the name…

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Affordable 3d printing pen from Velleman

As I discovered when I could give a try to the 3Doodler handheld 3d printer back in March, 3d sketching in the air can totally be great fun. Let’s make it clear, you won’t create any flying machines or 3d printed musical instruments but it is possible to serve up something more elaborate than a squiggle ball with a little practice. The only problem with the original 3d printing pen construction is that it’s way too heavy to create precise drawings and is uncomfortable to use after a while.

 

3d pen for sketching in 3D

3d printer pen by Velleman

Just like in most cases of the 3d printing industry, after the successful kickstarter project of the doodler, a lot of chinese clones appeared on the market. The only problem with chinese suppliers is that you never can trust any quality values and replacing parts or getting support might be an impossible mission as well. You’d better get your 3d printing pen at a local supplier who cares about warranty – and if not, it will have consequences – and this way you can feel safe with your brand new 3d printing device.

 

© lix

© lix

But parents, please take care if you want to buy a 3d printing pen for Christmas, the tip of the machine can be really hot which can easily burn one’s hands! So please make sure that you child won’t touch the nozzle while sing the 3d printing pen, and you better do not leave it alone with it.

3d printing pen

3d pen by Velleman which works like a 3d printer

In this blog post I would like to show you a brand new 3d printing pen, this one is from the Belgian company called Velleman. Their amazingly popular K8200 DIY 3D printer KIT made them recognized in the worldwide maker community, although they’ve been producing DIY electronic kits like arduino shield and other professional electronic solutions for decades now. The new 3d printing pen has got some benefits and useful features like the 1.75 mm filament mechanism, which allows you to use any 3d printer filament from the cheapest PLA 3d printing filament rolls to the premium quality filament spools which allows you to 3d printsketch with wood or sandstone instead of being bound to expensive filament sticks.

 

There is a real 3d printer extrusion mechanism trapped inside the cigar shaped device. On the whole, many things has changed to the 3d printing pen’s shell design since the designers of the 3d doodler created their successful kickstarter project. The oblong device is covered in a white and blue hard plastic casing. It’s lightweight and easy to hold between your thumb, index and middle finger, just like a thicker ink pen.

 

3d pen for drawing in 3d

3d printer pen by Velleman

The Velleman 3D Printer Pen has debuted at the Maker Faire in New York. The 1.75 mm 3d printer filament extrusion system allows you to use all the common FDM 3d printing materials like ABS, PLA, HIPS, PVA, Timberfill (wood), Luminuous, Flexible, Conductive and so on… For example, playing with the conductive filament and sketching circuits in 3d or ON 3d surfaces can be an interesting stuff, I’d like to give it a go on some organic 3d printed designs. But let’stalk about the Velleman 3d printing pen, which is an absolutely great xmas gift, but for you, not for your toddler. Just check out the specs and prices, you can forget about the filament price because you can order 1 kg spools for about 20€ which last for a year or more…

 

3d pen

3d pen by Velleman

Features

  • light weight design
  • slim design comfortable handle
  • speed adjustment makes it easy to control the drawing speed
  • for: heating ring and nozzle are an integrated cartridge
  • temperature adjustable
  • intelligent standby function, enters standby after 5 minutes of idle time
  • heat extrusion
  • filament: 1.75 mm ABS (included)
  • adjustable printing speed
  • for:: product designers, hobbyists and students

Specifications

  • heating temperature: 320 – 482 °F (160 – 250 °C)
  • maximum heating power: 26 W
  • power supply: 12 VDC – 3 A
  • weight: 2.4 ounces (65 g)
  • dimensions: 7.3 x 1.7 x 1.2 inches (187 x 43 x 31 mm)

And how does the Velleman 3d printing pen work?

Literally, it is a small 3d printer extrusion mechanism integrated in a pen-shaped case, which melts and extrudes 1.75 mm thermoplastic filament sticks which can be deposited anywhere from ground instead of the layer-by-layer modeling technology of the desktop 3d printers. This gives you the possibility to build an huge variety of geometries and structures with ease! Most people will instantly be able to trace objects on paper, and after only a few hours of practice you will be able to make far more intricate objects. Just like a glue gun, but this 3d printing device doesn’t extrude thick plastic stick. This 3d printing pen extrudes heated 1.75 mm filament (PLA or ABS, which filament cools down once it’s out of the nozzle. This allows you to build 3D structures and shapes.

 

© lix

© lix

Why is it better, than the Doodler?

Because it is lighter, easier to use: you only have to plug in your 3d printing pen and wait until it heats the extruder. Once the wanted the temperature achieved, you can set up the speed of extrusion and start creating some magic! Especially for the holidays, just think about some awesome, lightweight truss-like christmas ornaments with your 3d pen! You can use any kind of 1.75 mm 3d printer filament in any colors, GigamaX3D also offer special 3d printing pen packages including some rolls of premium 3d printer filament or conductive 3d printing plastics.

 

Who is the Velleman 3d printing pen for?

3d pen by Velleman

3d pen kit with 3 spools of filament – for €71

For anyone who would like to draw in the air! It is a toy for adults, not for your children! It is not allowed at the age of 12 but your older teenager children would surely like it! I also have purchased my own copy because I though it will be a nice part and a great additional tool of my 3d printer collection. I already have a Flashforge Creator X Dual extruder 3d printer, which is a great copy of the Makerbot Replicator 2, which I also own. The Rep2 has been modded, it has an open-source controller and runs sailfish now, because I don’t want to be bound to MB’s presets or adjust the setting in text editor while modifying the profile files. I also have a Velleman K8200 open-source 3d printer kit, but I don’t use it for 3d printing: I’ve turned it with some open-source upgrade parts and a Proxon drilling machine into a simple CNC mill which can engrave or mill PCBs or soft materials like Styrofoam. The next thing I want to give a try to is the chocolate extruder, as you can see it on this video, it can print a chocolate mug on your toast for a delicious breakfast at the holidays! And if you want to complete your 3d printer setup, you also should have a 3d scanner which allows you to capture your environment in 3d and prepare it for 3d printing! You also can draw some hair or make-up on a 3d printed sculpture like these 3d printed Halloween monsters.

3d pen from Velleman

3d pen from Velleman

 

If you already are a 3d printer owner and maker, you can fix and repair your failed prints with your 3d printing pen. Just fill the holes, glue broken parts or pimp some old and failed plastic parts and turn them into some piece of art! In forthcoming world of new devices like 3d scanner and 3d printers, the Velleman 3d printing pen offers something creative, special and unique, allowing you to create strange new works of art – and it is truly affordable and a great xmas gift for about 70 Euros, including some spools of 3d printer filament. The 3d printing pen may look like a tech gift for 3d printing enthusiasts but thanks to its easy-to-use mechanism it can be a creative tool for everybody who like making things on their own! You also can print some graphic pattern on your 2d printer and then draw it with you 3d printing pen using heat-resistant translucent kapton tape on it! Have you ever tried a 3d printing pen? Come visit the GigamaX 3D Printing Studio in Budapest to test all their 3d printing, 3d scanning devices, you also can see how the Velleman 3d printing pen works! If you are from the EU, you can easily purchase your 3d printing related stuff on their 3d print webshop, the shipping costs are about 10-15 Euros under 10 kg across the continent so it isn’t a big deal to order some 3d printer parts, 3d printing materials or an affordable desktop 3d scanner for Christmas. By the way, have you 3dprinted something scary for Halloween? I’ve just checked these 3d prints from parametric | art, a Hungarian 3d designer and 3d printer guy, who also uses GigamaX3D’s filaments and 3d printers. Check out his blog post about 3d printed Halloween decoration, if you want some great downloadable 3d printable models!