What is the best 3D printer for action figures? Action figures are small-sized figures that represent fictional characters. They are made from modeling clay, aluminum wires, plastic resins, and several sculpting tools which need effort, meticulousness, and time. However, you don’t have to go through these hassles anymore, technology has greatly evolved, and gadgets are becoming user-friendly and more efficient.
With 3D printers’ help, you can print CAD or 3D models and save a lot of time in prototyping, including creating action figures. Do you want to create a 3D printed articulated action figure but don’t know where to start because of the several models in the market? In this guide, we have listed the best 3D printers for action figures and some tips to help you select a device that will give you the ultimate experience.
What is a 3D Printer?
A 3D printer is a computer-controlled fabrication gadget. 3D printers allow the flexible and rapid production of models, prototypes, spare parts, and several items across commercial, industrial, and domestic spheres. These models range from small and pocket-friendly designs for home use to designs meant for the factory floor. Designs meant for printing are created in 3D printing software as Amazon Machine Image (AMI) and Computer-Aided Design (CAD) files.
How to Use a 3D Printer
Prepare Your Build Plate
The build area is the area where the item is built. For outstanding results, ensure the plate adheres firmly to the bed underneath it.
Select Your Filament
There are several materials available, each with particular strengths. PLA and ABS are the most used materials.
Switch on Your Printer and Leave it to Heat
Every filament has its own specific heat setting. Therefore, make sure you know the specific requirement of each filament.
Load the Filament
The actual loading processes vary but always ensure you heat the filament nozzle to a specific temperature, use a release lever, and then put in a length of the filament. It’s common to see a melting filament starting to jut through the filament.
Check the Bed Position
Always ensure the bed is correctly positioned. An uneven bed may lead to uneven or inaccurate prints. Therefore, make sure the bed is positioned and leveled at the right height. Some 3D printers need manual leveling while others are automated.
Key in the Required Information
You have to measure the level and height and type them into the printer software to describe the exact gap between the build plate and the nozzle.
Once you’ve followed the above steps, you can now open the G-Code file and start printing.
Are 3D printers Expensive to Run?
No, they are not. The cost depends on the model you use and how often you use it. However, you should consider factors like the 3D printer’s price, filament costs, and electricity.
Do 3D Printers Only Use Plastics?
No. Plastic is among the commonly used fabrication material, but some top-class models mold ceramics, metal, and resins.
Do 3D Printers Need Ventilation?
Some 3D printers use PLA filament, which emits volatile chemicals and ultrafine particles, and styrene, a plastic component. Although there is no clear link between the inhalation of the mist and ill health, it’s crucial to operate in a well-ventilated room.
Best 3D Printer for Action Figures Buying Guide
There are several 3D printers available in the market with different features. Therefore, selecting the best 3D printers for figures can be a daunting task. But the good news is, we have some tips that will guide you to choose the best 3D printer for action figures. Let’s dive in.
The most common types of printing technology used include FDN-based printers and resin-based printers. The resin-based printers deliver smooth surfaces and more details. These printers convert their material into solid under light exposure. The printer then uses lasers to draw the object layer by layer. Meanwhile, FBM-based printers are more pocket-friendly but have a low resolution that results in less detailed objects.
Whichever type of 3D printer you buy, always check the material it uses when printing. The FF printers use filament materials such as PLA, ABS, HDPE, nylon, and TPE. Many of these materials, mostly ABS and PLA, come in a wide range of colors. Additionally, depending on your printer’s specification, the filament diameter should be 1.75mm or 3mm, which are not interchangeable.
All printers have limits on the size of the 3D print they can produce. A large build volume attracts a higher price tag and the number of materials used. You should always think about the action figure you want to print before buying a 3D printer. If you have a large action figure than the printer volume, you have to join them manually.
Printer Speed and Quality
3D printing is a slow process, and presently there’s no better way to do it. A 3″ to 4″ model may take at least 6 hours to print, depending on the print quality you choose. The thicker the layers of the action figure, the quicker the production. However, the print quality is low. So, there is a conflict between print quality and print speed.
The best 3D printer allows you to determine if you want to print slowly but at a higher quality or quickly but low quality.
The print head is the main component of the 3D printer. Without it, it cannot function. It has two parts, the hotend and the coldend (extruder). The hotend is in the lower part of the printer while the extruder occupies the upper part of the 3D printer.
Ultimately, the 3D printer you choose is dependent on your budget. You can find a good 3D printer at an affordable price. However, if you’re not operating on a budget, go for a device that can print heavy volumes.
Best 3D Printer for Action Figures Reviews
If you’re looking for the best 3D printer for action figures that fit into the pocket-friendly section, go for the ELEGOO Mars UV Photocuring LCD 3D Printer. It features a 3.5” touch screen that offers real-time printing process monitoring. With its precision, it provides error-free printing with a resolution of 0.047mm.
- LED Display Photocuring
- 0.047mm XY resolution
- 0.0-0.2mm layer thickness
- 3.5” touch screen
- USB connectivity
- Sturdy structure
- Provide accurate printing
- Off-line printing
- Unique industrial design
- Printing may get messy sometimes
- Resin is smelly
ANYCUBIC Photon UV LCD 3D Printer
The ANYCUBIC Photon UV LCD 3D Printer is a top-notch printer specially designed to meet designers’ daily needs. It has a unique industrial design that is easy to assemble and use. The printer is made of high-quality CNC parts that provide consistent and repeatable performance.
This 3D printer has a 2K LCD screen that has a 2560×1440 HD resolution. What’s more, it features a smart user-friendly interface that helps you gain monitor print status in real-time.
- 1.25 um Z-axis resolution
- 20mm/h printing speed
- ANYCUBIC Photon OS
- 2.8” touch screen
- Easy to use
- Incredible resolution
- After-sale services
- Very affordable
- Solid mechanics
- The firmware is buggy
DremelDigilab3D20 3D Printer
The DremelDigilab3D20 3D Printer is the best 3D printer for hobbyists, home users, and tinkerers. It offers countless hours of low-cost and reliable 3D printing. The printer is compatible with a slicer software and offers easy and quick 3D printing of models. Additionally, it comes with a fully-assembled setup that helps you start printing immediately after unboxing it.
- Full-color LCD touch screen
- 5.9” maximum build width
- Dremel Digilab 3D Slicer
- Fully-enclosed design
- Reliable printing time
- Quick and easy to begin printing
- High quality finish
- PLA filament
- Software is hard to use
- Quite loud
Monoprice Voxel 3D Printer
The Monoprice Voxel 3D Printer is a beginner-friendly 3D printer that makes 3D printing easy with its simple menu system displayed on a 2.8” IPS touch screen. It has a flexible and removable build plate that makes removing a model a breeze. It also features a quick nozzle change mechanism that helps you to change nozzles easily without extra tools.
- Flexible and removable build plate
- 150x150x150mm build area
- Built-in camera
- Wi-Fi radio and USB port
- Easy to use
- Replaceable build plate
- Quick nozzle change
- Solid construction
- Fairly quiet
- Poor Wi-Fi range
- Poor customer support
- The camera is difficult to use
QIDI TECH Shadow 5.5 S 3D Printer
If you’re looking for a 3D printer designed for easy operation and has an outstanding operating system, the QIDI TECH Shadow 5.5 S 3D Printer is a good bet. This printer is commonly used in the field of medicine, architecture, education, and design.
This 3D printer has a top-class 2K LCD screen with strong tempered glass that improves printing accuracy. Additionally, it has a dual-fan ventilation system coupled with a carbon air filter that reduces resin odor when printing.
- 3.5” touch screen
- All-aluminum CNC machining parts
- Dual fan
- Professional Slicing Software
- 2K HD masking screen
- Easy to operate
- Excellent ventilation
- Amazing aesthetic design
- Low odor-friendly material
- Improved printing experience
- Small text size on the LCD screen
Buying the best 3D printer for action figures can help you create the best action figures never seen before.
Also, before purchasing a 3D printer, check whether the device lies within your budget and that it suits all your design needs.