Ten 3D Printers You Can Find On eBay

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It's time to join the 3D printing revolution
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It's time to join the 3D printing revolution

Time To Take Advantage Of The Latest Technology

You can forge a world of objects using 3D printing, from prototyping work projects to printing out colourful and intricate creative designs. Commercial 3D printers are inexpensive and use common thermoplastic or resin materials for stunning results at home or in the office.
 Find a world of 3D objects online that can be downloaded as simple stereolithography (STL) files and recreated on a desktop printer.
It's time to join the visionaries. Find you how to do so with our guide to 10 of the best 3D printers out there...

The RepRap Prusa i3 helped catch the imagination in this field
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The RepRap Prusa i3 helped catch the imagination in this field

RepRap Prusa i3

Start 3D printing with a British original that caught the world’s imagination. RepRap is short for replicating rapid prototyper and the printer started life as a project at the University of Bath. The idea was to develop a 3D printer that could print most of its own components, allowing users to quickly build replicas and save on manufacturing costs. Different models of the RepRap include the Darwin (1.0) and Mendel (2.0), but the Prusa i3 is one of the most popular designs. Its 3D prints are built using the fused filament fabrication (FFF) technique from thermoplastics including ABS, PLA, nylon or HDPE, and virtually any 3D or CAD software. 

Makerbot is a polished 3D printing performer
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Makerbot is a polished 3D printing performer

Makerbot Replicator 5th Generation

A solid steel chassis and a built-in LCD screen give this printer from Makerbot a polished look and performance. It uses PLA and prints quickly allowing USB cable and SD card printing in the home or office. That solid steel body comes into play when printing at speed, cutting down on shake and vibration for a better finish on 3D prints. Print objects at sizes up to 6 x 8 x 10 inches (width x height x depth). Use the inlaid LCD screen to print straight from the SD card. Looks great in any workspace, comes ready to print and is accurate at speed.

The Cubify CubeX is brilliant for beginners
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The Cubify CubeX is brilliant for beginners

Cubify CubeX

Large-scale 3D prints are possible on the Cubify CubeX (maximum print size is 10.75 x 10.75 x 9.5 inches – roughly basketball size). All CubeX printers have conversion software thrown in to convert 3D models into layered slices (G-code), using PLA or ABS plastic. Comes in single, double or triple head versions, with multiple print heads allowing multicolour objects to be printed. Sturdy build that comes preassembled for instant plug and play 3D printing, making this an excellent beginner’s machine. 

The Da Vinci 2.0 is a great plug and play device
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The Da Vinci 2.0 is a great plug and play device

Da Vinci 2.0

Another great plug and play device from XYZ Printing that features two extruders for multicolour projects. Has easy to install plastic filament cartridges for FFF printing, supplied in 13 colours. Units have a clear LED display plus adjustable speed and print quality. The Da Vinci 2.0 connects to a cloud library online where there are thousands of model files to create from or share creations with others. Automatic nozzle cleaning function. Size-wise it can handle objects at 5.9 W x 7.8 H x 7.8 D inches and layer depth between 100 and 400 microns.

The Ultimaker 2 offers top of the range performance
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The Ultimaker 2 offers top of the range performance

Ultimaker 2

Print faster with more precision using the Ultimaker 2. Supports both PLA and ABS at a range of speeds and layer depths starting at a superb 20 microns. Designed for both home and office and handles sizes up to an impressive 9 x 9 x 8 inches. Printers can load up universal filament cartridges to cut down on costs and load up their objects using a USB connection to a PC or via the SD card slot, by saving G-code 3D models to the card. Comes ready to print out of the box, looks great and is a great option for the busy professional or the absolute beginner. Not a cheap option, but one of the best out there.

The future's orange with a Formlabs Form 1
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The future's orange with a Formlabs Form 1

Formlabs Form 1

Switching up from the usual plastic extrusion printers, the Formlabs Form 1 uses stereolithography (SLA) technology instead, giving the performance of high cost industrial printers on the desktop. Print using resin rather than plastics for layers of between 25 and 200 microns, and create high resolution beautifully printed objects. Compact and quiet in operation, the objects hang down from the print platform rather than being built up in layers as in FFF printing. Has an eye-catching orange screen and metallic body – the orange colouring filters out UV light - and offers excellent print quality. 

The BQ Witbox would be ideal for educational establishments
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The BQ Witbox would be ideal for educational establishments

BQ Witbox

Witbox from the Spanish company BQ offers one of the largest print volumes at 11.7 x 8.3 x 7.9 inches as well as a fully enclosed print environment, making it suitable for schools. Renowned as a reliable and well-built 3D printer, units can be stacked on top of one another to create a grid of printers. Compatible with PLA and allows layer resolution of 50 microns. Large print area means bigger objects or even multiple objects at the same time.

The Printrbot Smple Metal offers great value
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The Printrbot Smple Metal offers great value

Printrbot Simple Metal

Just like the RepRap, the Printrbot Simple Metal comes in kit form or pre-assembled – superb for enthusiasts who want to learn the ins and outs of assembly. Printrbot’s Simple Metal is inexpensive and minimal, with a clean powder-coated steel frame. Uses PLA (and ABS if upgraded). Excellent quality prints starting at 100 microns layer resolution. One of the best first 3D printers and great value.

The Robo 3D R1 is a good budget 3D printer
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The Robo 3D R1 is a good budget 3D printer

Robo 3D R1

Another great budget option for the 3D printer market that promises unit upgrades as and when they become available. Not as stylish or sleek as others on the market, but manages 10 x 9 x 8 inch prints, offering sufficient volume for work or creative projects. Print from SD card at layer resolution down to 100 microns. Common thermoplastics PLA and ABS can be used as well as a few others. 

The FlashForge Dreamer is quick and powerful
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The FlashForge Dreamer is quick and powerful

FlashForge Dreamer

Lots of features are packed into the FlashForge Dreamer, including WiFi and USB connectivity, LCD touchscreen and up to 32Gb SD card support. An enclosed printing chamber adds safety and improved print quality. Maximum print volume is a respectable 9.5 x 5.9 x 5.5 inches and the printer can use popular ABS and PLA thermoplastics as well as others. Create objects using two print heads for multicolour objects. Quick and powerful 3D printer.

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