3d printer advice

Hi, I’m way out of my depth here so joined the forum to ask for advice from those in the know lol. My partner lives collecting star wars figures and doing the model kits. For xmas i would like to get him a 3d printer to expand on this but i have no idea which one. The budget is up to £350, is this reasonable? What ones would you guys who use them recommend?
Thanks in advance x

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Other more knowledgeable members may guide you to choose which one is better, but I would like to warn you that a 3D printer is not like a laser printer that you plug and push a button to get the result.
3D printers require play with several settings and tests until you get it working. If you think your partner is prepared to learn and try, will surely enjoy the gift. Otherwise you may better spend your budget buying the stl files and taking them to a printing service…

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I’m using an Anycubic Photon Mono 4K since 1 and half year ago, and for sure it’s a good tool for modelling. I began printing figures for my son, mainly Avengers and Pokemon. As Carlos said, you have to learn how to use the software so the printer undestands what you want to print, but it’s quite easy. A lot of try and fail at first, but reading/watching videos, you get it easily.

My printer is discontinued already, but you have the next gen, more faster and bigger printing size: Anycubic Photon Mono X 6Ks – ANYCUBIC-ES.

Also you have some types of resin, and also, you will learn what’s best for you. I use the water washable, easy and cheap to clean. But for example, I’m printing now a Chevrolet Tacoma for a diorama, and the standard resin is not the best option, as it breaks easily. In that case, you can buy the Tough resin. Even they have an ABS-like resin.

A lot of free files for printing can be found in internet, thingverse.com, cults3d.com… and payware also.


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Thanks, im hoping the skill and technicality of it will actually be something that he enjoys learning and getting better at, if not its the thought that counts and it can get sold on ebay :grin:

Thank you, thats very helpful to have a recommendation from someone actually using it and the price is better than i thought too :blush:

I highly recommend Elegoo Mars series. That’s what I use for my prints, and it has done some impressive prints. Some of my examples: 3D prints and CADs Part 2 - by petition2God - #694 by Petition2God. I have Mars 3, and the newer Mars 4 looks great.
I found Elegoo’s customer service much better than Anycubic’s btw. I had both brands, and I like Elegoo much better - not sure how they will be in the UK but that at least was the case for me in the US.

You can check the Amazon.com for the listings and even check them out on Elegoo’s official website: Mars Series Resin 3D Printers – ELEGOO Official. Compare the prices and see which one fits your budget.

Good luck!

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So he seems happy with his printer but now has lots of research to do to find out how to use it, first possibly stupid question is are the files for resin printing different to filament printing?

So, hes tried out a few ewok models but has some questions, anyone hot any advice please.

Although there are a few guys here doing 3D prints, this is mostly a modelling site.
I would say you will much more information, and quicker, at specialized 3D Printing forums or Facebook groups.

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Although there are some really good modelers here who incorporate 3D printing into their work, as Carlos ( @varanusk ) says, the best specialized advice will come from a FB group that concentrates on the Anycubic printers. Members there can help your partner tune up his print settings and print-file work (the supports and slicer settings).

I also use an Anycubic printer, but mine is a couple of generations older than your partner’s. This is my “go-to” FB page when I have a question (and where I did most of my research when I was first starting out):

Anycubic Photon Printer Owners

This is another good page for community contact with a lot of 3D designers and printers. Many of the best designers have Patreon followings and sell their designs, but Patroeon is an excellent source for some high quality 3D print designs.

DLP 3D Printing Group

Note that a lot of good 3D designers will do bespoke work on commission, so if your needs or pockets are deep enough, you can get specialized CAD work done. It’s not hard to find designers who will take on commissions, but I do strongly suggest that you get some references and portfolio renderings, because there are also a lot of… let’s say, “less than good” 3D designers who will take your money and deliver some shoddy work.

This is another good group for resin printers that’s not tied to any specific printer manufacturer, so it’s more “generic.” Still the basic procedures remain the same across most printers, and most of the file software for design and other file work also cross printers.

Printing STLs

Finally, I highly (HIGHLY) recommend that anyone who has a 3D printer at least learn some of the basics of 3D design and the creation of STLs for printing.

The best and easiest beginner 3D design program is Tinkercad. It’s not particularly good for figures and other “organic” designs, but it does a great job with simple mechanical type designs. It’s also free and very intuitive to start using.


I’ve made dozens and dozens of small designs to supplement my own scale modeling using Tinkercad. When you need or want some detail part or even complete, small models, it can get you what you want when there’s no other source for a 3D design.

Good luck to your partner! Hope he has a great time with his new hobby!

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Well, yes and no unfortunately. Yes in a sense that both 3D printers can use STL type files. However, no, in a sense that resin printers are more for highly detailed delicate smooth model files (e.g. 1/35 scale figures and weapons) while the FDM printers are used for less delicate, tougher functional items (e.g. 1/12 scale toy figurines, replacement caps, small tools for kit building or painting). I hope this helps.
Some reading on the differences:

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Admins, the last post sounds like some AI-generated advertisement, don’t you think?