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3D Printing Prices


From design to finished production

3D printing pricing can vary greatly depending on the type of printer, the size and complexity of the print, and the materials used. Many industries have by now realized additive manufacturing's ability to cut costs.

3D Printing Prices3D Printing Prices

3D printing can save you money through - for example - cheaper materials, quicker turnaround times, and fewer workers.

Did you know that 30% of professional 3D printer users claim that cost savings are the main advantage of this technology? I find this interesting, because not as many people think about how these savings are actually achieved.

Pricing overall considerations

When it comes to 3D printing cost, there are various factors that will affect the price. The size and complexity of the print, as well as the material used all play an important role in determining the overall cost.

Furthermore, if you opt for professional 3D printers, they usually charge by the hour so this can add additional costs to your 3D printing budget.

When you purchase a 3D printer, there are certain costs that are unavoidable. These include the 3D printer costs of the printer itself, as well as supplies such as filament and replacement parts. However, when it comes to 3D printing services, many of these costs can be reduced or eliminated altogether.

When looking for 3D print quality services, you should always make sure to check what 3D printing materials and printing fees are included in the price.

When thinking about industrial 3D printing costs overall, it’s important to consider both the costs associated with owning a 3D printer, as well as those related to using a professional service. Both have pros and cons and can be great options depending on your budget.

If you’re looking to save money on 3D-printed items, it’s worth considering both pricing models before making any decisions.

Factors Affecting 3D Printing Hourly Cost

It's impossible to accurately estimate the average hourly rate for 3D printing because there are so many variables involved. However, after reading this blog, you will have a better understanding of some of the factors that affect pricing.

Several variables affect the hourly rate of your print job. By taking all these factors into account and doing some simple math, you can determine the final cost.

Before you can get started, you need to have a CAD model that is ready to be printed. Although it costs money upfront to create the model, we will assume for the sake of this article that you already have one in order to focus on the hourly cost of printing itself.

Although there is a wide range of options, every 3D printer operator will consider the same core group of factors. These are:

3D printing Material Costs

The cost of each 3D printing job will be based on the specific material used, as different materials have different prices. Not all materials are created equal, so it's essential to factor in the price when choosing which one to use.

Of all the factors, material costs are usually the simplest to calculate. For example: if your printing service company bought a one-kilogram spool of nylon filament for £40, and 100 grams of that is used in the print job, then the cost of your print job will be £4.

To calculate the hourly material cost, divide the total phrase 'material cost' by the number of print hours.

Printer Operation

Not only do you have to pay for the printer, but you will also incur costs from running it. All machines need repairs and 3D printers are no different. Over time, they will decrease in quality and an operator will have to cover these purchasing costs.

It's tough to estimate how much it will cost to operate a printer because each company determines that price tag itself. For example, let's say there is a 3D printer worth £5,000 with an expected lifespan of 2,500 hours of printing.


Even the best 3D printers cannot produce a part that is immediately usable - it will always require some level of post-processing before the customer can receive it.

The least amount of work that would need to be done to this object is sanding, though depending on the printing technology and where it'll eventually be used, the part might also require de-powdering or furnacing.

Please be mindful that most printing services will charge extra for packaging and shipping on top of post-processing costs.

Additional Costs

The three factors stated above provide the base cost per hour to print a 3D object. However, there are other additional variable costs that will increase the hourly price, such as:

  • Labour costs: Even though 3D printers are advertised as automatic, someone still needs to operate and oversee the machine. Once the product is printed, post-processing is another task for manual labour is needed. The wages for these employees will most likely be factored into the final cost per hour.
  • Printing: Many individuals don't know this, but power for printers isn't free. Although the printer's electricity consumption is typically factored into its operating costs, your printing service could also view it as an isolated cost.
  • Additional costs: If you're running a business, you'll want to make a profit off of every job. Many 3D printing companies will raise their final quotes by a certain percentage. The specific calculation differs between services.
  • Cost and considerations for different types of 3D printing processes
  • 3D printing techniques include stereolithography (SLA) and selective laser sintering (SLS). Each 3D Print Technology has pros & cons. How is 3D printing possible? Consult the detailed guides. The 3D printer price has fallen substantially over the past decade and all three techniques can be found in small, affordable systems.
  • Stereolithography (SLA)
  • SLA3D printers are capable of combining liquid resins and hardened plastic by photopolymerisation. Known by professionals as a highly efficient process with high resolution, precision and material flexibility, SLA offers many advantages. The SLA part is most accurate and clear as compared to other plastic 3D printers but the most important benefit of SLA is its versatility.
  • SLA resin formulations have broad optical, mechanical, thermal and mechanical properties that match standards in engineering and industrial plastics. SLA 3D printing has an extensive range of material options for many different application areas.
  • Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM)
  • FDM also known as fused filament fabrication or FFF, is a printing technique enabling the production of parts using the melting and extrusion of thermoplastic materials. FDM has become the most widely used 3D printed product on the consumer side thanks in part to the advent of hobby printers on the market.
  • FDM Printers for commercial applications remain popular. 3D printing is usually the lowest-priced FDM printer. The lowest-priced DIY 3-D printer is priced at around £260.

3D Printing Cost Calculators

Below are some popular 3D printing cost calculators that can help you estimate your print job's price. Although they might not take into account all the factors that go into a quote from a printing service, they'll give you a ballpark idea of how much your project will cost.

A few popular 3D printing cost calculators are:


Omni calculators
image from [https://www.omnicalculator.com/other/3d-printing]

With Omni, you can get a quick and easy estimate of the cost of 3D printing in just seconds. It's simple to use and offers a good starting point for anyone new to 3D printing. While it doesn't have all the bells and whistles of some other calculators, it's still a useful tool.


image from [https://3daddict.com/tool/img/3D_Print_Cost_Calculator.html]

3D Addict is a website that lets you upload your CAD model in order to calculate the cost of 3D printing it. It includes many cost factors, such as electricity and shipping, with more features planned for the future.

Costs of filaments

Although 3D printing is a great way to create objects, the filament costs definitely need to be considered before starting any project. The type of filament and size of the object being printed are important factors in determining the end cost.

On average, every 100 grams of our Premium PLA Filament costs £1.94 to produce an object. 500 grams on the other hand costs around an average cost of £9.97 per print.

The price you pay for filament is based on two factors: the size of objects you print and how much material gets wasted due to printer errors or infill levels. On average, a single roll of filament lasts one month.

Materials to choose from

3D printing has become much more affordable in recent years, and much does 3D printing cost depends on the type of machine you use. Professional 3D printer costs typically range from several thousand up to tens of thousands of dollars, depending on their capabilities.

Additionally, the materials used for 3D printing can vary greatly - from traditional plastics such as ABS and PLA to metal such as 17-4 PH stainless steel and titanium alloys to ceramic composites and even sandstone. Each material is suited for different needs depending on the application of the 3D printed part.

For example, if you are printing a small ornament or toy, PLA plastic would be ideal; however, if you need a structural component that will need to withstand high temperatures, a metal alloy may be more suitable.

Another factor to consider when deciding which material is best for different 3D printing is the cost of the materials, as some can be much more expensive than others. Ultimately, choosing the right material for 3D printing depends on a variety of factors such as application and budget.


The conclusion is much does 3D printing cost? It depends on the type of 3D printer you choose and the features it offers. Professional 3D printers can be very expensive while hobbyist-level 3D printers are much more affordable.

However, no matter what kind of 3D printer you invest in, you are sure to get great value for your money and be able to enjoy all the benefits that 3D printing has to offer. With its array of materials, technologies, and applications, 3D printing is an exciting technology with much potential.

Author Natalia Zalikowska

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