Asked — Edited

3D Printing Service

Looking for a good 3d printing service to get a quote on some pieces. Any suggestions ?


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I have a friend who works for staples in the US. They are putting 3D printers in the print service areas of their stores. They have a few setup now.

I built one. I also joined a hacker space that has 3 of them now. I also looked locally and didn't have a lot of luck finding a good printer willing to print much. The cheapest short term solution is a maker\hacker space. The cheapest long term solution is to build a 3rd printer. The most expensive solution by far is a service.

Realize that these parts will not be as strong as injection molded parts but with some post processing, you can make them pretty strong. It's defiantly not as simple as printing out a part and it is perfect. I think that because of this, many people are reluctant to print for others.

Just some thoughts...


3D Systems is probably the best quality prints you will find from a print service. I have never used them, but they have been 3D printing for a very long time.

#3 has 3d print service. they are also members here.


Honestly unless your ready for the woes of machine upkeep buying a 3d printer may not really be the cheapest. By that I mean you can have a few dozen items printed for 1/4 the price of a average printer. These things have to be tended to , cleaned , lubed , calibrated and even watched remotely from a camera if you aren't home so you can stop them in case of a clog , piece comes off a build plate or in the rare but possible occurance of fire. There are just so many things that can go wrong. Don't get me wrong it's a great tool but it is also a great undertaking and commitment financially. If you don't have the spare $ then having someone else print for you is a big thumbs up.


I have to agree with d.cochran. I can't offer to provide 3D prints using my FlashForge 3D printer because I don't want to provide poor quality prints which is basically all that come out of my machine whether I use PLA or ABS. Maybe in another generation or two printer quality as well as better extruder material will give better prints.


3d systems has industrial grade stratus rapid prototyping machines that are awesome , but you pay for what you get too. Shapeways is great as well. Me or Ant can print for other members too between our own projects but we will take a couple weeks in most cases


@robodoc , you have a solidoodle 3 right? You should have the techs at solidoodle help you calibrate it as they come with room for much improvement!


Thanks for all the suggestions guys. For reference trying to have the shell for jimmy printed.

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did they release the STL's for him yet? if so, that is the new front runner for Patriot 1


It looks like he is pretty good sized. Do you want it the highest resolution? .1 mm ? Do you want the item finished after the print. Finishing is Trimming away the support material , cut buggers away , then prime it a few times and sand?

Depending on how nice you want the parts significantly affects the cost. For example a rough .3 mm print with no finish work may be in the ballpark of a 2 to 3 hundred dollars because there are many pieces and they are large.


The Stl files aren't ready yet. They should be in the next week or so. He looks really awesome and is about 2.5 ft tall.

@josh I know nothing about 3d printing so ill have to look into it. I don't mind a rough unfinshed copy I have to sand etc.


I just got in 2 rolls of fresh ABS. Guess who I am gonna be printing soon:) I figured the statement that they would release the files "by the end of the year" meant more like December time frame. I hope they release them in a week or so. I am done printing the head so I am ready to move on to the other parts that this provides.


@d.cochran , it's cool they would release files but something you may want to consider is downloading 123d design and start watching/ following along tutorials. Not to say you must design your own but it happens all the time we see something cool but then sit on our thumbs waiting until someone posts files. This way you can start printing little brackets and stuff. Since you already have a printer this is really ideal for you. Eventually once your proficient with 123d you can move on to 3ds max or blender but start small first.


I am using freecad to design. Already been doing that, and have designed quite a few custom pieces to make the head of Rapiro work on JD.

I have a past in CAD (about 20 years ago) and was pretty good at it. Won state competitions. It was very new then but 3D conceptualization is something that I dont struggle with. The tools, sometimes yea.

I also have access to a 4 Axis CNC with Router. I am sure that mine will ultimately be built out of aluminum, but the one for the school, that will be 3D printed.


@ d.cochran Ive been talking with a engineer and they should be out before the end of the year. Hes just waiting on the go ahead from Intel to release them to the public


when will xl-robots be ready to do custom print jobs? ive emailed them a few times about printing the Robi body "shell" no reply....doesn't look like the site is being updated either.


Hey hooligan , use email , the websites on hold till we have testable models and videos for them as well. I just installed new tips on the maker bots so we can print. Do you have the .Stl for this to print?


thanks man! no...that's my problem. im pretty sure I can have some one "nomad" here scan the actual robot ....but its nice to know you can do it. ill get back to you. thanks man.

any word on your An-dru robot too?


i dont have a printern sorry


scanner? do you know if the .stl files are available....ive looked and no luck. BAH!


I dont see that the STL is available yet. I am sure that it will be at some point, but this is the last of the robots that EZ-Robot is focusing on so it could be a few more days before the STL is ready.

@Xuven Thanks for the information.I really appreciate it.


no stl are availeble&no scanner

United Kingdom

hi there i know this is a late reply but just for the heads up, if you ever look again for a printing service i highly suggest D2D Printing. I trust them and they are good when it comes to printing and any printing service. Just check them out or visit their site. I hope this will help. Here:

United Kingdom

Not sure if business cards/stationary are what were required here...