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Spend my money: Kid friendly 3D printer?


May 20, 2020
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Want to buy our oldest a 3D printer and need recommendations for my oldest who's turning 12.

We have a couple decent (I5/I7) computers to run it and the initial programs like sketch up.
I like the Prusa I3 for multi-material but not confident in buying from overseas company.

This will naturally become a family tool but want the kids to be able to learn it ad not grow out of it too quickly.

Budget is $500~ish.
I've got a creality cr-10 (like $350) and a cr1- s5 (big bastard like $750). Both work great and easy to use. Print PET, PLA, Nylon mainly. Make car parts/dash pieces and buddy uses it or costume crap. Annnd, that reminds me I need to finish printing my header tube fitment kit.
I'm running an Ender 3, I think it's the most common printer at this point. You can find it for around $200. Bed size on an ender3 is about 220mm x 220mm x 250mm If you want something with a bigger bed then the CR-10 is the way to go. (300x300x400mm).
Can you post some pictures of your projects? I am having a hard time seeing a car part done on a 3D printer.
Why would I get a large vs small printer, is there any advantage?
The creality printers look interesting but having hard time supporting a non US company.

Any ideas on a 3D scanner? The only example sub $1000 is no longer produced.
Ideally, I find a solid printer to build onto with accessories as they get better.

Does creality offer a multiple input rolls for color parts?
Do some materials take paint better than other?

Yes, I am a bit new to the hobby but really want to start the kids off right so they stay motivated.

Why big vs small print bed? That determines the max size of things you can print. Do you want to print a dozen cock n ball valve covers at a time or 3 dozen? :flipoff2:

It looks like there's a dual extruder option for the CR10. About $140 to add it on.
Daughter (9yo) got a Creality CR--10s Pro from Santa. He found it at Matterhackers - they offer *real* tech support such as if you call them up, you get someone (American) on the phone immediately. You are going to have a hard time if you are looking for a US only company.

If you join the Experimental Aircraft Association for $40 you can get a free seat of SolidWorks (gold standard in CAD)

As your family grows into it, they can start looking at thingiverse.com for free models for just about anything and everything.
We have a Creality CR-10 also.
'We' bought it for 'us', but I'm about to just get another one because I can't seem to get use of it any more. Then when I do I'm getting yelled at because my prints are too big lol
My daughter is 12 now and was starting to ask those questions in math, 'When are we going to use this stuff?"
.....well now she knows, mission accomplished for me

bonus, I have a ton of little tools around the house that I use every day that I didn't know I needed that the kiddo has developed, prototyped, and fabricated

OP, The hardest part is getting the first layer down and there is a learning curve. Online info is massive you will be fine
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