Spotlight

Buying Guide Education: The best 3D printer for your school

By Site editors - Disclosure - Price update: 2022 August 10 -

3D printers are an outcome for both primary and secondary school education when it comes to education in science and technology. Students get in touch with engineering, design and material knowledge, and it’s fun too. But what is important to take into consideration when buying a 3D printer?

Questions and answers
Schools who want to introduce their students to modern technology like 3D printing often encounter difficult questions. But fortunately there are many places where you can get good advice and clear answers. Like us!

Important questions that each school must ask before proceeding to purchase a suitable 3D printer:

  • What is the price / quality ratio? Does the printer fit within budget?
  • Is the printer well constructed? Can it whit-stand intensive use for a while?
  • What materials can be printed? Do you need proprietary filaments from the supplier (often more expensive)?
  • What resolution of printing (in micron) is needed? Often you don’t need the best out there.
  • What software is included? Is it user-friendly enough for the target audience?
  • Is the 3D printer lockable and so safe for enthusiastic hands?
  • Can the printer print 'stand alone' (without a computer connected)?

Based on this we came to the following recommendations:

Primary schools & smaller budget

If there is a limited budget, as is usually the case with all the educational institutions, there is currently one brand that clearly high in the ranking: XYZprinting. The 3D printer of this manufacturer are of good quality, low-priced, easy-to-use, and often uses a so-called open filament system, which also allows you to use (often cheaper) materials from third parties.

image: XYZprinting da Vinci Jr. 1.0w Wifi - for sale low as: 349.95

XYZprinting da Vinci Jr. 1.0w Wifi

Best Buy

$ 349.95

XYZprinting da Vinci Jr. 1.0w Wifi

image: XYZprinting da Vinci Jr. 1.0w Wifi - for sale low as: 349.95
Best Buy

Connect from Anywhere in Your Home Network Now upgraded with WiFi connectivity, the da Vinci Jr. 1.0w allows anyone to wirelessly send 3D files from their Windows and Mac computers to their 3D printer from anywhere in their local area network.

Printing technology: Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF)
Layer Resolution: 100 / 0.1 micron / mm
Filament systeem: Open Open/closed
Print speed: 100 mm3/s
Number of extruders: 1 (Single Extruder)
Software included: XYZware


Secondary education and more budget

Is there more budget available for this type of investment, as is usually the case in secondary education, academic education and universities, then other 3D printers are more suitable. The possibilities and (print) quality are higher, but of course the price is higher. Opportunities are:

image: MakerBot Replicator Mini+

MakerBot Replicator Mini+

Multiple vendors
$ 1,299.99

image: MakerBot Replicator+

MakerBot Replicator+

Multiple vendors
$ 2,129.99

MakerBot Replicator Mini+

The new MakerBot Replicator Mini+ is the simpler and especially smaller version of the Replicator+, the newest work horse of MakerBot. With a compacter format of 11.7 x 13.7 x 15 inches versus 20.8 x 17.3 x 16.1 (295 x 349 x 381 mm versus 528 x 441 x 410 mm), a smaller maximum build volume 4 x 5 x 5 inches versus 11.6 x 5 x 5 inches (101 x 126 x 126 mm versus 295 x 195 x 165 mm) and the lack of an ethernet connection, the mini is especially directed towards classrooms and education in general as well as for the workplace.

Printing technology: Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM)
Layer Resolution: 100 / 0.1 micron / mm
Filament systeem: Closed Open/closed
Number of extruders: 1 (Single Extruder)
Software included:

MakerBot Replicator+

The new MakerBot Replicator+, already the sixth generation of 3D printers of the company, has been designed and tested for high reliability and fast printing. But also in the area of the number of useful adjustment possibilities and ease-of-use no corners have been cut.

Printing technology: Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM)
Layer Resolution: 100 / 0.1 micron / mm
Filament systeem: Closed Open/closed
Number of extruders: 1 (Single Extruder)
Software included:

image: Ultimaker Filament PLA - for sale low as: 69.-

Ultimaker Filament PLA

MatterHackers

$ 69.-

image: Ultimaker Filament ABS - for sale low as: 69.-

Ultimaker Filament ABS

MatterHackers

$ 69.-

You can save considerably on filaments

Many shops all offer exactly the same filaments. Why would you pay more? Every day we check and update the prices and stock of many types and brands. Some examples are listed below.

See and compare all filaments in price and stock here: Price Comparison Filaments

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