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"Which SLA printer for master figures?" Topic

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clibinarium13 May 2019 12:52 p.m. PST

I am finally starting to get to grips with z-brush, and its a very powerful set of tools for a sculptor.
For a long time high quality printing seemed way too expensive to be practical for most projects. Sure, 3d printing is very affordable now, but a home PLA printer, while a cool toy and great for personal projects is not going to produce a print that can approach a traditional sculpt for commercial mastering. SLA printers do though and are in widespread use now.
My question is which printers do people use for master models?

I was eyeing some of the Wanhao or Anycubic models which are in and around the GBP 500 mark, which is very reasonable. But while the prints are excellent they look like they may be just short of mastering quality. There are more expensive options like the form labs machines, which though not cheap would pay for themselves in terms of how much they would save you getting a 3rd party to do commission printing. Really I am wondering where the sweet spot of price and quality is?

bsrlee13 May 2019 4:36 p.m. PST

I take it that you have fully explored the problems of SLA printers, like fairly nasty resins, fumes and having to 'post-cure' the print?

Otherwise, I think you have hit it right on the head – there are some 'nice' entry level machines then there is a big jump in price to 'professional' machines, and without being able to go along with your own print file and have it printed on several machines without a lot of tweaking, its going to be difficult to make an informed choice.

So, haunt the various user groups for the respective printers and look at after sales service, spare parts availability, Manufacturer's Industry history (good vs 'lemons').

Me, I'm still at the filament printer stage, I don't think I could ever handle the resins, fumes and such involved with current generation SLA printers, maybe have to wait for something to come out in a powder based machine.

Grimmnar13 May 2019 6:11 p.m. PST


Have you not looked into how to resolve the fumes smell if it would affect you that is?
Quite easy and inexpensive. Almost too easy actually.


gianpippo14 May 2019 1:07 a.m. PST

could you please explain better "how easy and inexpensive" is to resolve the resin smell issue?

clibinarium14 May 2019 2:16 a.m. PST

bsrlee, yes I am aware of the user issues with SLA like the fumes etc. Not for keeping in the house it would seem. Definitely a downside, but looks likes its a necessary evil for now. So I am also interested in Grimmnar's solution.

Munster14 May 2019 4:27 a.m. PST

I'd join the Anycubic Photon user group on facebook, and ask the question, and you'll get pretty good advice.

I think the current advice from them is that the EPAX X1 is marginally better than the Photon, and that the Photon S (which I have) is still too new.

Another that is liked is the Kelmat S400

However, I'm new to Resin printing, like 2 weeks, (several years of FDM printing) so take the above with a very big grain of salt

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