3D Printer :)

3D Printer :)

I have long wanted a 3D printer, and as they have been coming down in price I have been saving up and researching which one to get. Then on one of the Facebook 3D printing groups I had joined I was told about a deal I really couldn’t pass up- one of the Chinese manufacturers was selling their $399 small printer for $99 including shipping, so I bought one 🙂

I figured this would be a great way to dip my toe in the water and see if this is something I will really use, and it’s the perfect size to print the mini-figures Crisp wants for her D&D games. If it turns out I get into it then I can get one of the better ones (with a heated bed etc.) later, but this is perfect to learn how the slicing software works and get familiar with what the various settings do.

It arrived yesterday (it’s a Monoprice i3 Mini) and I unpacked it today and tried it out. It’s not something for the impatient as each print (and I’m doing small ones) take anywhere from 1-3 hours plus.

The first thing I tried was a “calibration cube”. It worked (which I was very happy about!), but the quality of the surfaces left something to be desired.

After a couple of false starts while I played with changing some settings I managed to print a very nice “benchy”. This is a small boat model that tests all sorts of “benchmark” qualities of a 3D printer, sloped surfaces, openings, smooth flat areas, etc., and this took just over 3 1/2 hours.  I’m very pleased with the result (except for a weird layer shift about 3/4 of the way up the cabin roof).

Right now it’s printing a test D&D mini-figure, we’ll see how that comes out in about an hour….

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