FDM 3D PRINTING SERVICE
Fast & cost-effective for rapidly prototyping, large display models, or functional prototypes if you don't mind layer lines.
1. Number of Buildplates
A build plate is essentially a new print job. Every build plate must be processed through a special computer program and then physically loaded onto the machine. In the case of FDM 3D printing, there's not a lot of post-processing. This is why FDM 3D printing is significantly cheaper than Resin 3D printing per build plate. But packing the build plate will always result in the lowest unit price since the fixed cost of printing a build plate is averaged away.
3. Print Time (Hours Per Buildplate)
A lot of complex math went into here to determine the hourly print time cost, taking into account local rent, printer depreciation, replacement parts cost, 3D printer repair labor cost, and other things like that. But basically, we are pretty confident we are extremely close to the true factor cost. And if anyone is billing a 3D printing hourly rate less than this, they will almost certainly lose money long term. Of course, as 3D printing technology gets cheaper and better, this number will likely asymptote toward just the hourly cost of land.
2. Custom Colors
To ensure we always have every material type in stock without wasting too much space storing colors that will only be used once and never again, we charge a little extra if you want to use a color other than the standard color. The standard color for all FDM 3D printing materials is white.
4. Material Usage (Grams Per Buildplate)
We don't actually make any money on the material portion. The material cost is simply the cost of material adjusted by the average probability of failed prints. For example, if the material cost is $5 but a print of similar nature a will fail 1 out of every 2 times, we will adjust the material cost by a factor of 2. So $10 will be the adjusted material cost. Of course, as 3D printing technology gets cheaper and better, the adjustment factor will trend toward 1 (100% print success rate).