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Looking for First 3D printer, need advice

VERAULT

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Jan 30, 2012
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Connecticut, USA
So the cost of printing services or begging/batering to get my 3d print work done has become ridiculous and impractical. I need to jump in and buy one. The prices have come down I know but there are still alot of factors. This will be my first so my budget is $200 or less if possible. Id like something with a larger frame then the small beginner models as that severely limits your build size.

I was considering the Anycubic Mega Zero which was on sale early on for about $150.00; price dropped to $109 and is now out of production:https://www.anycubic.com/collections/anycubic-mega-3d-printers/products/mega-zero

They have a Mega Zero 2 now for $170.00. https://www.anycubic.com/collections/anycubic-mega-3d-printers/products/mega-zero-2-0-fdm-3d-printer

But the same complaint for both models keeps coming up and a red flag. These units need constant leveling. Like Daily or between projects which could get... Will get very annoying.

What should I be looking at? And where is a good site to buy various spools of print material?

Would be curious what you guys think and what you own at this point.

Mick
 

rittwage

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Mar 6, 2012
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Location
Augusta, Georgia, USA
You should always re-level before printing everything... That is a normal issue with budget printers, and even some mid-range.

You can get the little "kids" printers for about $60. :)
 

whartung

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Joined
Apr 23, 2020
Messages
553
You should always re-level before printing everything... That is a normal issue with budget printers, and even some mid-range.

Mind, I can't even spell "3D Printer", so that just shows my familiarity with them.

Is the releveling issue tied to the material of the unit? Can they be anchored to something stronger (say a chunk of 3/4" plywood), does that solve the problem?
 

ldkraemer

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Mar 14, 2013
Messages
2,095
Location
Chaffee, MO
The leveling issue isn't the Printer's Frame or the table it's sitting on. The BED is heated, and the Filament Extruder is heated, and the tolerances must
be correct from the nozzle to the bed, or the heated stream of liquid filament will not adhere properly to the bed. If there isn't good adhesion,
then the part can lift, or warp as it's being printed, and the part is malformed. Some folks use the Extreme stick glue to make the adhesion
of the heated BED more aggressive. That seems to help. Some print on Glass placed on their BED.

The BED is adjusted on the four corners, and a few thousands extra clearance makes a difference. Some folks use a piece of paper to level
the bed by using at least 9 or 12 points on the XY axis to LEVEL the BED to the Extruder. Different brands of Extruders also play a role in making
a proper part.

Different brands of filament, and types of filament means playing with the temperatures to get a good printed part. Not all filament prints well
on any brand printer.

Larry
 

dabone

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Feb 26, 2009
Messages
1,061
Location
Chattanooga, TN - USA
Ender 3... Hands down the easiest FDM printer to get into.
The only mods I would suggest at the very first is make sure you get the yellow springs for the bed, this reduces the amount of releveling needed. A lot..
 

dabone

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Feb 26, 2009
Messages
1,061
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Chattanooga, TN - USA
Yeah, the higher tension on the replacement springs means less movement of the wheels while printing. I didn't use the replacement wheels myself.
My ender 3 currently has a upgraded main board, color touch screen, and bltouch. And a built in Pi4 for octoprint. But I love modding my 3d printers as much as actually using them.
 

tradde

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Apr 30, 2003
Messages
1,262
Location
Katy, Tx
I am very happy with my Creality CR6 SE. But it's not in your budget. But if you're planning to add the bltouch and other mods then this already has self leveling and a color touch screen. I could upgrade the main board but I don't see a reason at this time to do that. Yeah, Octoprint is way cool. I have a camera mount on the front of mine and plan to add some LED lights to be able to see things better. The little LED they provide is pretty useless.
 

VERAULT

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i dont want to get ahead of myself with modding. id like to try a stock system with different filament before changing anything..
 

tradde

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Katy, Tx
i dont want to get ahead of myself with modding. id like to try a stock system with different filament before changing anything..

I understand that completely. I got this particular unit from a recommendation from a good friend. He asked his friends that 3d print what they would suggest. This
is the one they told him to get. I never really thought I'd be enjoying 3d printing so much.
 

ScutBoy

Experienced Member
Joined
Jan 9, 2014
Messages
273
Location
Northfield, MN USA
I cut my teeth on an Ender 3; learned a lot, fiddled a lot. However it seemed there were always nagging issues. I got clearance from the wife to get the top end Prusa MK3S+, and that thing is a dream! It's expensive, but it reminds me of the maxim "You buy cheap tools many times, but expensive tools only once".

Now - you may happy with an Ender or one of it's contemporaries. I'm not slagging on them since I made a lot of cool stuff with mine. Just be aware that there are higher end options that may save you spending time, effort, and wasted filament on modding your printer over time :)
 

maxtherabbit

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Apr 23, 2019
Messages
1,755
Location
VA, USA
I cut my teeth on an Ender 3; learned a lot, fiddled a lot. However it seemed there were always nagging issues. I got clearance from the wife to get the top end Prusa MK3S+, and that thing is a dream! It's expensive, but it reminds me of the maxim "You buy cheap tools many times, but expensive tools only once".

Now - you may happy with an Ender or one of it's contemporaries. I'm not slagging on them since I made a lot of cool stuff with mine. Just be aware that there are higher end options that may save you spending time, effort, and wasted filament on modding your printer over time :)

there are apparently chinese clones of that MK3S+ out there, almost an order of magnitude less expensive than the genuine article

any experience with those?
 

VERAULT

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Jan 30, 2012
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Not the printer frame or the table on which it is sitting. Bed: The BED heats up. The Filament Extruder heats up, too. Tolerances must be correct from nozzle to bed or a heated stream of filament won't stick well to the bed. Good adhesion means that the part doesn't move or warp as it's being printed. This means that the part isn't the same as it should be. The Extreme stick glue is used by some people to make the bond between the heated BED and the mattress more strong. That seems to work. A print on Glass was put on their bed.

Just click to This https://technoburst.com/, For to know how the BED is adjusted. A few thousand extra clearance makes a big difference. Use at least 9 or 12 points on each axis to level the bed. Another thing that helps make a good part is the type of Extruder that is used in the process.
Who or what are you replying to? The last post was 6 or 7 months back.
 

twolazy

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May 22, 2011
Messages
1,072
Location
Chicago, IL
Im in the same boat, and looking at an Ender myself just due to the massive community support around it. So how has it worked out for you, since the topic is back up?
 
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