Today, we will answer one of the most frequently asked questions we get daily “Why is 3D printing so expensive?” And we’re here to tell the tale of 3D printing prices.
1. 3D Printing Technology
The equipment and materials used in 3D printing aren’t cheap. A 3D printer for instance can cause about Php 50,000 or more. A bit expensive, right? But without these technologies, a project cannot be made. And it’s not only a one-time expense. To keep it working well and make its life span longer, proper maintenance is a must.
3D printing companies save you from a huge cost. Note that different types of projects need unique technology. But with their services, you don’t need to purchase a unit anymore. You will only be charged the rightful 3D printing price.
There are different types of 3D printing materials set for different kinds of projects. Each type has its unique price. The most common ones are thermoplastics (filaments and powder) and thermosets (resin).
a. Thermoplastics (filaments and powder) - Most widely used types of filaments are ABS (Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene) and PLA (Polylactic acid). These two are also the commonly used 3D printing material as they are more cost-efficient than other types yet have good quality. These can cost around Php 1,000 to Php 3,500 only per kilo.
b. Thermosets (resin) - Versatile for many complex projects, resin is definitely a great quality type of material. However, it’s more costly at times. The standard type of resin can cost about Php 2,500 per liter. Other types can go up to Php 15,000 per liter. But the great news is, 3D companies often get these materials from their partner suppliers at a discounted price.
3. 3D Model
A 3D model is vital in getting an accurate 3D printing price. It helps determine the precise details of the project such as the size and complexity to know how much material and support are needed to get the project done.
But creating a 3D model of an item isn’t cheap either. If you are a 3D artist or you have connections who can help you create your own 3D model of the object, lucky you. However, if you have no way to get a 3D file, we can help you have one. The price of a 3D render can go from Php 2,000 to Php 15,000 depending on the type. It’s quite pricey as you’re paying for the skills of the 3D modeler, the cost of 3D programs, and other factors like electricity.
4. Size and Complexity
When talking about the 3D printing price, these are some of the important factors to highlight. And yes, you’re right! The logic behind this is simple: the bigger the size of an object, the more materials you need to get it done. That means you’ll have to pay more.
But take note, there are instances when a smaller item costs more compared to a bigger one because of the infill density. If you want your object to be stronger and heavier than the usual 3D printed item, you can request for a higher infill rate. The average is 20% infill rate. However, it will also increase the 3D printing price.
What most people don’t know about 3D printing is that it’s not a total instant process. Yes, it works by dropping your 3D file and printing it. But the process doesn’t stop there. Post-processing is necessary for all 3D printed items.
Once done printing, it needs to be cured, cleaned, polished, and painted before becoming a usable finish product. These add up to the total contract price as it requires manpower, equipment, and materials to do so.
6. Turnaround time
Need an item the soonest possible? If the average turnaround time of an object is about 14 days, we can have it in a week but, there are factors to consider such as the number of projects being handled at a specific time. That’s why we require an additional payment for ad-hoc projects.
Deciding whether or not to get started with 3D printing isn’t easy considering the 3D printing price. Understanding what you’re paying for can help you land on the most ideal decision for you and can even help you meet your budget.
The answer basically depends on what you will 3D print. If it’s a basic item that’s readily available in the market, in most cases, it’s cheaper to buy. However, for items that are tough to find, customized, or those that are too expensive when bought, it’s more ideal to 3D print.
3D printing is quite expensive because of all the important factors mentioned beforehand. However, the cost of 3D printing can be satisfying when you have studied everything that’s in and out of it. Making the right choice in 3D printing could make you say, “It’s definitely worth the price!”
Have something you want to get a quote of? Contact us to get the precise 3D printing price you need to check on your budget.
*Note: The prices indicated in this content are for representation only and are not actual costs.
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