There was a time when 3D printers were accessible to only a limited group of people, but that’s not the case anymore. We can see the use of 3D printers in schools, homes, and libraries because it has become more affordable than before, but still, they are not cheap enough that anyone and everyone can buy them.
Even in today’s time, buying 3D printers needs investment capacities based on the type of 3D printer you want to buy. In some scenarios, buying a used 3D printer is the best option, as you can experiment with your requirements and see if you would like to invest more in a new 3D printer.
But before you jump to search for used 3D printers for sale, there are some things that you need to keep in mind. There are always two sides to a coin – be it used 3D printers or something else.
This blog post will guide you on whether you should buy used 3D printers, their pros and cons, what to look for before making a final decision, and if you should buy refurbished 3D printers.
Should You Buy Used 3D Printers?
Entering into the field of 3D printing needs some level of financial and skill investment, and when you are not sure yet what, when, and how exactly you will use a 3D printer, it’s an excellent option to buy used 3D printers.
There are many reasons favoring the decision to buy used 3D printers, including but not limited to a saturated 3D printer market and the reparable nature of most printers.
Moreover, buying a used 3D printer can be an excellent choice if you want only a few items to print. So, overall, if you have limited use of 3D printers at the initial stage, you should buy a used or refurbished 3D printer. As mentioned above, there are two sides to a coin; here are the pros and cons of used 3D printers:
Pros of Used 3D printers:
This may sound obvious, but it’s a fact. The price of used 3D printers depends on many factors like how much the 3D printer has been through action, region, and model types.
Ensures the Working Conditions:
Another thing that many new people in the 3D printing field may not know is that you may need to put in a considerable amount of hours to fine-tune the setting on cheap machines to ensure it imprints quality products. So, when you buy a used 3D printer, you are already saving a lot of time and probably even money.
Better Quality at Good Price:
If you buy a used 3D printer, you are more likely to get a better-quality model for the same amount that you may spend on a new model. And this becomes even more logical if you already have some hands-on experience with 3D printing.
Contributing to a Better Environment:
Let’s face it, humans produce millions of solid waste each year, and when you decide to reuse or repurpose used 3D printers, you are stepping closer to a greener future.
Cons of Used 3D printers for Sale:
Damage & Attrition:
One significant drawback of buying used 3D printers is damage. There can be some damages to the printer that are not visible to the naked eye, but when you use it, you may notice them. So you need to be a little more careful when looking for used 3D printers.
When you buy a used 3D printer from an individual seller, they may not offer you shipping services, or even if they do, you can not assure the reliability of the services.
Let us tell you, 3D printers installation is not an easy process, especially when they are using them for the very first time. So, when you buy a used 3D printer, you may have to look after the entire installation process by yourself only.
Lack of After-sales Services & Warranty:
When you buy a used 3D printer from a third-party seller, you may invite a list of problems that may follow afterward as they don’t offer technical assistance or any 3d printer maintenance program. For example, you may get no idea about the age of the machine and how many spare parts you may need to purchase after buying the 3D printer.
Another disadvantage of buying used 3D printers is that you may not have as long a warranty period as a brand-new 3D printer. So always buy form a trusted 3D printer seller
Things to Look for When Buying a Used 3D Printer
The good thing about buying used 3D printers is that you can always look for the things that help you make a sound decision with a realistic picture in mind.
Here are some tips for you to keep in mind when you are searching for used 3D printers for sale:
Buy from Trusted and Reliable Sources:
A trusted and reliable source is one of the most important things to consider while buying used 3D printers. Always buy from an authorized reseller or someone you know personally – it gives you peace of mind if you face any problems after making your purchase. Beware of buying from some random people on eBay or other third-party platforms, as you can not verify the machine’s working condition.
The second best option is to buy used 3D printers locally if you can’t buy them from someone you know personally. When you buy locally, you can drive to the seller’s location and see the condition of the 3D printer physically. As 3D printers are not a joke, you can’t rely solely on photos and videos while buying. It’s essential to check everything manually.
Go for Test Prints:
The next thing you need to do is do some test printing. It could be a small and simple design to see the quality of the product and detect problems, if there are any. Some of the most common 3D printing issues are layer shifting, stringing, or warping.
Ask a lot of questions:
When buying used 3D printers, you need to ask as many questions as possible to get a realistic idea about the printer’s condition.
Ask the seller about the following:
- The age of the 3D printer,
- Settings used for different materials,
- Numbers of changed, replaced, and original parts in the printer,
- From where they buy spare parts,
- Nozzles that will come with the printer, and
- The reason behind selling the printer.
Moreover, you can also do your research by seeing what people have to say about the subject matter in online and offline communities.
Upgrades and Modifications:
Upgrading printers with new accessories and modifying some parts are very common in the 3D printing field, and sometimes it can be a good thing if the owner is a pro and knows what exactly he is doing. Some of the most common upgrades include swapped build plate, nozzle, cooling fans, stepper drivers, or hot end; in rare cases, it can also be a controller board.
You must be careful if an owner has upgraded or modified the printer with any third-party accessories, as it nulls the printer’s warranty.
Tips To Inspect Used 3D Printers Before Buying:
When buying a second-hand 3D printer, it’s better to inspect the printer before you close the deal. Here are some inspection notes that will help you make a better decision:
- Turn off the power and see if you can move the print head easily with your hands,
- Inspect the quality of the frame, whether it’s sturdy or damaged,
- When doing the print test, check the size and quality of printed objects,
- Change the printing speed (Slow to fast and vice versa) to identify any mechanical problems,
- Change a few filaments to see if you can identify any problems in the process,
- Make sure the heat is evenly distributed on the bed.
Buying a used 3D printer is definitely a good way of entering the world of 3D printing if you are a newbie. However, we advise you to consider all the points mentioned above in the blog to ensure you make a favorable decision and have a smooth experience with your printer in the future.
We hope with the guidance of this blog; you will get the best used 3D printer or refurbished 3D printer soon. Pivot AM is an authorized seller of used and refurbished 3D printers, so if you are looking for that perfect match, feel free to email us at email@example.com or call us at 641-780-5686 or 888-928-6811 to discuss your requirements.