The ULTIMATE Best 3D Printing Services for 2022 - Total 3D Printing (2023)

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Total 3D Printing Team

3D Printing Experts at Total 3D Printing

We're the Total 3D Printing team and we love to help others learn more about 3D printing. Whether this is your first time checking out 3D printers or you've got multiple 3D printers and want to add more, we're here to help show you the ropes and to give you the information you need to succeed.

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Finding a good 3D printing service isn’t easy in rapidly changing 3D printing space. With the costs of even desktop 3D printers still inaccessible to many, a service can greatly reduce the headaches associated with the process.

(Video) TOP 5: Best 3D Printers 2022

But what exactly IS a 3D printing service…

What is a 3D printing service and how do you find a cheap 3D printing service?

3D printing services are companies that will print out objects on your behalf. One of the most important benefits of such a service is that an individual can have access to very expensive, industrial-grade 3D printers. Then there is the fact that you send scans, photographs, stl or even physical items to be fabricated using a 3D printer.

You can choose any material, color, size you want and the customization options are endless. Another great benefit of using such a service is that it’s convenient. The company will take care of everything for you and you will end up with a high quality printed item in your mail.

All the logistics, settings, materials and all the hard work will be done by professionals to ensure the best quality print delivered to you at a reasonable time frame. Here’s our list of top expensive and cheap 3D printing services

1) Treatstock

The ULTIMATE Best 3D Printing Services for 2022 - Total 3D Printing (3)

Treatstock is another web service that bundles the forces of 3D printing services all over the world. Its instant quote system is very well designed for newcomers as you can choose between major 3D printing applications (prototyping, jewelry and dental), and special materials (multi-color and metal). Each category displays the relevant printing materials in a wide range of colors.

Another great feature that Treatstock offers to its users is a 3D model selling platform. Treatstock invites artists to open storefronts and upload their designs so customers can purchase and 3D print them. What is more, Treatstock features a handful of apps on its website that enables the creation of braille labels to make life easier for the visually impaired, and relief 3D images based on photos.

Treatstock can fabricate items in materials like metal, plastic, gypsum, paper, powder, resin, wax as well as wood. They accept payments via Credit Card and can ship worldwide.

Treatstock website:

The ULTIMATE Best 3D Printing Services for 2022 - Total 3D Printing (4)

Our Recommendation? Try Treatstock

3D printing services made easier than ever. Treatstock allows you to browse among thousands of manufactures from all over the world, compare and sort them, get a quote and place an order.

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(Video) What's The Best 3D Printers (2023)? The Definitive Guide!

2) Sculpteo

Like Shapeways and i.materialise, Sculpteo is an online 3D printing service that allows anyone to upload 3D models and have them fabricated in a wide variety of materials. In keeping with its competitors, Sculpteo also allows individuals and professionals to open up an online store front and sell their designs to the public.

Sculpteo’s stable of printers includes high-end machines by 3D Systems, EOS, Stratasys, and ZCorp. Its extensive technical documentation will help you detect design flaws and choose the right material for your project.

Sculpteo is able to print items in materials like metal, plastic, ceramic, resin and wax. They accept standard Credit Card, Debit Card and PayPal payments and are able to ship worldwide using UPS or other services for specific locations.

Sculpteo website:

(Video) Best 3D Printers for Beginners in 2023 | Top 5 | FDM Printers

Further Reading:

  • Sculpteo vs Shapeways

3) i.materialise

Materialise is a company that works with industrial clients to produce prototypes and 3D printed products. But for the general public and individual designers, Materialise offers an online 3D printing service called i.materialise.

Like Shapeways, the 3D printing service allows anyone to just upload their 3D models, have them analyzed and then printed by the company for you. Once an object has been uploaded and successfully printed, a designer can offer it for sale either via the gallery on the i.materalise online store, or embedded on their website.

I.materialise gives the ability for items to be printed in materials such as plastic, metal, ceramic, resin or wood. They support all the major payment methods like Credit Card and PayPal and ship worldwide using UPS, making them a good mid-range to cheap 3D printing service.

i.materialise website:

4) Stratasys Direct

One of the leading manufacturers of industrial-grade 3D printers, Stratasys is also offering a high-quality 3D printing service. Fittingly, Stratasys sports a dazzling assortment of materials, from which its user can choose from. This online 3D printing service is aimed at professionals in engineering, medicine, and industrial design. Another great feature of its online quoting page is the ability to create and edit styles (consisting of the printing method, material, finishing and surface treatment) that can be applied to successive projects. Stratasys is also sharing its expertise with companies interested in switching to additive manufacturing.

Stratasys Direct allows for items to be printed in materials such as metal, plastic, acrylic, ceramic, foam and wax. Since they are in direct contact with professionals, the payment details, as well as the shipping methods, are internally chosen.

Stratasys Direct website:

The ULTIMATE Best 3D Printing Services for 2022 - Total 3D Printing (5)

5) Shapeways

We will start off with Shapeways, the worlds most popular online 3D printing service. Shapeways offers 2 services.

The Shop service, where you can choose from a big collection of items designed by professionals, customize them and then have them printed at your specifications That means that professionals can also use the platform to upload their work and get for it when people decide to print their creations.

The Make service is exactly what it sounds like. You give Shapeways an object or 3D design of what you want to print, you tell them your needs, being material, color, etc, and they will take care of the rest for you. You will also get a quote of how much your print job will cost instantly. It really is as simple as that.

Their material selection varies from metal, plastic, ceramic, sandstone and even wax. As far as payments go, they accept Credit Card, PayPal, and Bank Transfer. Shapeways ships worldwide using services such as DHL, UPS, and USPS.

(Video) BEST 3D Printers of 2022 | My Top Picks To Get You Started!

Shapeways website:

The ULTIMATE Best 3D Printing Services for 2022 - Total 3D Printing (6)

6) Protolabs

With 500 machines placed around the world, Protolabs services industries worldwide since the early 2000s. This 3D printing service offers the full spectrum of rapid prototyping technologies since you can order parts made with injection molding.

Consequently, you can produce high-quality prototypes that have similar properties to the finished products. These parts can be used for promotional photo shootings and be subjected to extensive functional testing. After uploading the 3D design files, you get an instant quote of how much the parts will cost for the selected settings and materials.

Protolabs can print using materials such as metal, plastic, and nylon. They accept payment using invoices or PayPal and are able to ship worldwide.

Protolabs website:

7) Ponoko

Ponoko provides an online 3D printing service plus laser etching and engraving too. The company has designers, 3D printers and robots on hand, and pricing starts as low at $5 depending on what needs printing and the materials you choose. Ponoko also offers same day shipping if you order before a cut-off point. In theory, that means it is possible to convert your STL or CAD files into actual physical products and have them in your hands within the space of a day. Ponoko’s professional 3D printers are from 3D Systems and ZCorp.

Ponoko’s services can only print in metal and plastic materials using ColorJet, FDM or SLS processes. They seem to accept PayPal as their main payment option and ship worldwide using services such as UPS and USPS.

Ponoko’s website:

8) 3D Hubs

3D Hubs is a little different from the standard 3D printing services, in that there is not one company that does all the printing, but individuals all around the world. This is a different approach to the concept of ordering 3D printed parts but it works, and give bigger flexibility to the user.

The way it works is very simple. You upload your 3D designs to 3D Hubs, you select the material you want, and you get a list of different Hubs in the selected area. Hubs can be either big companies or individuals that will do all the 3D printing for you. A big benefit of such a service is that if you choose a local Hub, you can go and pick up your order for free. You get a different quote of the price for every Hub you see, so you have many options and price ranges to choose from.

3D Hubs officially has support for Hubs that can print any material, such as metal, plastic, paper, resin, stone, and wax. As for payments, they support all the major payment methods like Credit Card and PayPal, as well as some local payment methods depending on your location. Shipment is dependent on the Hub itself, but there is always the free option of picking it up yourself if the Hub is nearby.

3D Hubs website:

(Video) Honest 3D printer buyer’s guide: Find the best machine for you!

Further Research

  • Top Thingiverse Competitors to Try
  • 11 Ways to Make Money with 3D Printing
  • Best 3D Printers for Schools
  • Best 3D Printers for Cosplay


How much will my electric bill go up with a 3D printer? ›

Ordinary 3D printers do not use much electricity, only about 50-150 Watts while printing. This is about the same as one or two incandescent light bulbs. There are many different 3D printers and print settings available, however, so for a more accurate number you need to make some calculations or measurements.

Who is the leading 3D printing company? ›

15, 2022.
  • Stratasys, Ltd. ( SSYS)
  • 3D Systems Corp. ( DDD)
  • Proto Labs Inc. ( PRLB)
  • Materialise NV (MTLS)
  • Desktop Metal Inc. (DM)

Can you get a 3D printer for under $100? ›

One of the most important things about a 3D printer under $100 is the build quality of the printer itself and the electronics that are inside the printer. The Startt is an attractive machine thanks to its sub $100 price tag, but it's biggest cons are its lack of frame rigidity and its fairly small build volume.

What is a good price per hour for 3D printing? ›

Print Time

If the business paid $2,000 for a 3D printer with an expected life span of 2,000 print hours, they may charge around $1 per hour.

Are 3D printers becoming cheaper? ›

Monoprice Voxel 3D Printer

Through their first decade-and-change, 3D printers have come down in price, grown easier to set up and operate, and become more reliable.

Can you make a lot of money with a 3D printer? ›

The straightforward answer is Yes! You can undoubtedly make money with a 3D printer or operating in the 3D printing industry in 2023. How much money you ask? Well, that will depend on your level of knowledge and expertise in technology, as well as how much time you devote to this side hustle.

Which country is leading in 3D printing? ›

TOP 20 countries investing the most in additive technologies
16 more rows
Jan 19, 2020

What is the biggest problem of 3D printing? ›

Critical 3D Printing Problems and Solutions

Today, however, challenges seem to vary: the cost of pre- and post-processing, the limited selection of materials and technology limitations are the biggest 3D printing challenges of 2021.

What is the best 3D company to invest in? ›

11 Best 3D Printing Stocks To Invest In
  • voxeljet AG (NASDAQ:VJET) Number of Hedge Fund Holders: N/A. ...
  • Materialise NV (NASDAQ:MTLS) Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 4. ...
  • Nano Dimension Ltd. (NASDAQ:NNDM) ...
  • Velo3D, Inc. (NYSE:VLD) ...
  • Desktop Metal, Inc. (NYSE:DM) ...
  • Markforged Holding Corporation (NYSE:MKFG)
Nov 28, 2022

Are 3D printers illegal? ›

3D printing offers a wealth of innovation and opportunity but at the same time as with so many technological advancements, the law is unprepared for its effects in its current format. So, 3D printing itself is not illegal but some of its consequences might be especially in terms of intellectual property law.

What is the cheapest 3D printing method? ›

Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM)

FDM is one of the popular and affordable technologies. In this process, a product is built by selectively depositing melted material in a pre-determined path layer-by-layer. The materials used are thermoplastic polymers and come in a filament (thin wire-like) form.

How much does a 3D printer that can print a house cost? ›

3D printed house price

In general, it is estimated that a 3D printed house costs 30% to 55% less than a traditionally-built house. For reference, Apis Cor's small house cost less than $10,000 to produce, and ICON's compact 3D printed home even cost less than $4,000.

How many hours does 3D printing take? ›

On average, 3D printing an object can take anywhere from 30 minutes up to 12 hours to print. Sometimes, it can even take several days depending on how large and detailed your 3D model is.

Why are 3D printing services so expensive? ›

First is, of course, the printing process used. More industrial technologies, especially those using metal, are understandably more expensive. Additionally, the size of the printer build plays a large role. However, it is entirely possible to find desktop 3D printers for under $200 using either FDM or SLA processes.

How long do 3D printers last? ›

If you ware able and willing to repair it and replace parts as they wear out, it will last long enough for the technology of 3D printers to advance to the point that you decide to buy a better mode. 3–5 years, typically, but the field is changing fast enough that it's hard to predict.

Can you 3D print metal? ›

Titanium, steel, stainless steel, aluminium, copper, cobalt chrome, titanium, tungsten and nickel-based alloys are all available in powdered form for 3D printing, as are precious metals like gold, platinum, palladium and silver.

What are 3 disadvantages of 3D printing? ›

What are the Cons of 3D Printing?
  • Limited Materials. While 3D Printing can create items in a selection of plastics and metals the available selection of raw materials is not exhaustive. ...
  • Restricted Build Size. ...
  • Post Processing. ...
  • Large Volumes. ...
  • Part Structure. ...
  • Reduction in Manufacturing Jobs. ...
  • Design Inaccuracies. ...
  • Copyright Issues.

Why 3D printing is not popular? ›

Using 3D printers and associated software is still too complex for the uninitiated, who prefer to continue using traditional production methods. 3D printing has qualities that are highly sought after by industry (complexity of patterns, strength of materials)... but much less so by individuals.

What is the most profitable thing to make with a 3D printer? ›

What are the most popular 3D printed items? Cosplay props, planters, and miniatures are some of the biggest sellers. The popularity depends on which platform you are selling on. For example, on Etsy, the main customer base is looking for pretty, trendy things.

Can you make a living selling 3D models? ›

If you have a knack for 3D modeling, there's a good chance you can make money from selling your designs. The key is to find a niche market and create designs that people are willing to pay for. Once you've built up a portfolio of designs, you can start promoting your work and making sales.

Can you make a career out of 3D printing? ›

3D printing offers exciting career opportunities in diverse industry verticals like organ printing, robotics, AI, etc. The rising demand for 3D printed products implies a tremendous growth in the scope and size of the industry.

What is the most popular 3D printed object? ›

Smartphone stands are probably one of the most popular 3D printing ideas and designs on Thingiverse and other 3D printing websites.

Who is the best printing company in world? ›

The 5 Leading Printer Brands in the Industry
  1. HP. Hewlett-Packard (HP) was founded in 1939 by Bill Hewlett and David Packard in a one-car garage in Palo Alto, California. ...
  2. Canon. ...
  3. Xerox. ...
  4. Brother. ...
  5. Epson.
Apr 4, 2022

What is most commonly 3D printed? ›

Of all the different materials being utilized for 3D printing, plastic is the most common.

What is the strangest material that has been 3D printed? ›

Some of the Most Surprising 3D Printing Materials Currently...
  • Wood-based filaments. ...
  • A different use for linen. ...
  • 3D printing with sugar. ...
  • 3D printing with glass. ...
  • Filaments made from recycled plastic. ...
  • A 3D printing material inspired by ivory. ...
  • Clay as a more sustainable 3D printing material. ...
  • Printing with human cells.
Jan 7, 2022

How harmful is 3D printing? ›

Potential Hazards of 3D Printing

Some common hazards include: Breathing in harmful materials: 3D printing can release particulates and other harmful chemicals into the air. Skin contact with harmful materials: Users can get hazardous materials, such as metal powders, solvents and other chemicals, on their skin.

How toxic is 3D printing? ›

Dangerous fumes

Liquid 3D printing resins give off fumes or vapors containing volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can be harmful to humans if inhaled into the throat or lungs. Short-term exposure to resin fumes can result in dizziness, headaches, and throat irritation.

Can a 3D printer build a house? ›

3D-printed homes are revolutionizing the construction industry by making home builds faster, cheaper and more sustainable. In less than 24 hours, 3D printers can print the foundation and walls for a small home at a fraction of the cost of typical construction.

Is 3D printing worth investing in? ›

These days, 3D printing is a high-growth niche that is steadily reshaping the manufacturing and industrial sectors. Some estimates point to a doubling in annual revenue from additive manufacturing between 2022 and 2026.

Can I 3D print a house? ›

There are a very small number of companies and architectural firms offering 3D-printed houses, but it is possible to currently purchase and move into a 3D-printed house in the United States. Texas-based construction company ICON is one of the largest 3D-printing companies in the United States.

Can you 3D print a knife? ›

The AM knife was designed to be 3D-printed from a titanium alloy on a Renishaw AM250 selective laser melting (SLM) system. The AMRC team used the Simulation Utility within Autodesk Netfabb to simulate the build.

Can you 3D print hair? ›

Even though 3D printing has recently shown it can print pretty much anything, some things still defy the technology. This includes hair, fur, and other dense arrays of extremely fine features. These structures require a huge amount of computational time and power not only to design but also to print.

Can you 3D print a motor? ›

Chinese company Winbo Smart Tech 3D printed a four-cylinder Toyota engine in only three days using FDM 3D printers. This engine is composed of 130 entirely 3D printed parts, to show the potential of 3D printing machines: all kinds of parts are 3D printable and can easily be assembled.

What is the average price of 3D printing? ›

The next level of enthusiast and professional 3D printer prices range between $1,000 to $10,000.
How much does a 3D printer cost?
3D printer categoryAverage price
Hobbyist 3D printers$400 - $1,000
Enthusiast 3D printers$1,000 - $3,000
Professional 3D printers$3,000 - $10,000
Industrial 3D printer price$10,000+
1 more row
Jan 13, 2022

What should I 3D print first? ›

The 25 great beginner projects for at home 3D printers
  • When you've just got your first 3D printer at home, you'll be excited to get started – the possibilities really are endless and you can print absolutely anything! ...
  • Nerf gun parts.
  • Lightsaber projects.
  • The Infinity Gauntlet.
  • Remote controlled cars.
  • Toothpaste tube roller.

What are the downsides of 3D printing a house? ›

There's a limited number of materials that can be used in 3D printing. These materials are light but they lack strength when used as building materials. It's now more difficult to build high-rise buildings using 3D printers because the walls will not withstand the pressure on them once they get to a certain height.

How long does it take to build a house with a 3D printer? ›

3D homes can be built in as little as 24-48 hours for a fraction of the cost required by traditional home construction. Higher efficiency and sustainable materials make 3D printed homes environmentally friendly, aligning with the preferences of many modern homebuyers.

How long does it take for a 3D printer to print a house? ›

Alquist used a massive 3D printer to create the structure of the home out of concrete, rather than wood and other traditional materials. The process took just 28 hours — the typical Habitat for Humanity house takes at least four weeks to construct — and it cut building costs by 15% per square foot.

Can you run a 3D printer all day? ›

As long as you get a high-quality 3D printer, you shouldn't have any problems running it 24 hours a day. According to some Ender 3 users, their printers work fine when left running overnight.

What happens if you 3D print too fast? ›

Travel speed indicates how fast the print head moves when not extruding filament. The travel speed can often be faster than the print speed without affecting quality. However, if it is too fast, it can lead to 3D printing defects like less precise prints or even layer shifts.

How long does 3D printer filament last? ›

Nevertheless, based on the range of 40 to 168 (24/7) hours per week, we can say a heavy printer uses between 320 and 1,345 g of filament per week (or 45 to 190 g per day). At these rates, a spool will last from 5 to 22 days, or roughly 1 to 3 weeks.

Why are 3D printed homes cheaper? ›

With 3D printed homes constructed layer by layer, there's no longer a need for framing or drywalling because the walls are printed continuously from the ground up without requiring guides more complicated than some rebar to support the concrete.

How much cheaper is 3D printing than manufacturing? ›

It saves on energy by 40 to 60 percent as it eliminates shipping and other logistics activities. Also, it enables users to produce objects with lesser material. 3d printing service cost has cut up to 70% savings due to prototyping costs.

Does PLA degrade in water? ›

Neither ABS or PLA will degrade much in water. PLA is biodegradable, but it is what is known as chemically biodegradable, meaning it does not biodegrade very fast. ABS, PLA, and Nylon all are hydroscopic, but that does not mean they will absorb a bunch of water and then start degrading.

Is it hard to maintain a 3D printer? ›

Keeping your 3D printer clean isn't all that it takes to have it running smoothly. We take an in depth look at what you need to do to have your 3D printer at its best. 3D printers are no different than any other machine or tool; keep it clean and keep it lubricated so it's running at peak performance.

Do 3D printers use a lot of electricity? ›

Ordinary 3D printers do not use much electricity, only about 50-150 Watts while printing. This is about the same as one or two incandescent light bulbs. There are many different 3D printers and print settings available, however, so for a more accurate number you need to make some calculations or measurements.

How much electricity does Ender 3 use per hour? ›

With 2 heat ups (about 280 W each). So approximately 120 W average. Or 0.12 kWh per hour.

Does 3D printing has high up front expenses? ›

Indeed, the total cost of ownership for 3D metal printing can be high, with significant upfront expenses and ongoing operating costs.

Does the Ender 3 use a lot of electricity? ›

Idle: 6.5 Watts. Average Consumption Printing PLA (50°C/200°C): 50 Watts. Peak Consumption While Printing PLA: 253 Watts.

Are 3D printers energy efficient? ›

3D printing is a more efficient process than machining or casting. Less energy is required to create the products, especially when production includes merging parts. Part consolidation itself offers long-term fuel savings and fewer emissions when it comes to producing products. reduced need for shipping.

Can you leave ender 3 Pro on overnight? ›

How Long Can a 3D Printer Run. Is it safe to leave Ender 3 running overnight or not? As long as you get a high-quality 3D printer, you shouldn't have any problems running it 24 hours a day. According to some Ender 3 users, their printers work fine when left running overnight.

How long can ender 3 print continuously? ›

46 Hours full tilt with no problems at all. You should be fine. Just make sure you keep a lookout for the filament and use a new spool if possible.

Can a house be built by a 3D printer? ›

To create the house, Habitat for Humanity partnered with 3D printing home construction company Alquist 3D, which used a large-scale 3D concrete printer to produce the house in only 28 hours. The home features a kitchen, three bedrooms, and two full bathrooms.

How hot can a stock ender 3 print? ›

The Ender 3 has a maximum hot end temperature (nozzle temperature) of 260 °C, which is sufficient for common filaments like PLA, ABS, and PETG but insufficient for high-temp materials like PC and certain nylons.

How much does 50 watts cost per hour? ›

On average, a laptop consumes about 50 watts of electricity, the equivalent of 0.05 kWh. This means that if a laptop is on for eight hours a day, it will cost 24p a day to operate the laptop or 3p an hour.

What happens when Ender 3 Max runs out of filament? ›

Running out of filament

If you run out of filament, the printer will automatically pause the print, unload the remaining few centimeters of the material from the heatbreak, and move the X-carriage away from the print. You will be prompted to replace the spool and insert a new filament.

What is the strongest material you can 3D print? ›

Polycarbonate. According to multiple manufacturers and reviewers, polycarbonate (PC) is considered the strongest consumer filament out there. PC can yield extremely high-strength parts when printed correctly with an all-metal hot end and an enclosure.

What is the strongest 3D printing method? ›

SLA parts have the highest resolution and accuracy, the clearest details, and the smoothest surface finish of all plastic 3D printing technologies, but the main benefit of SLA lies in its versatility.


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