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  1. #1

    Question Buying first 3dprinter; Ultimaker vs Flash Forge Creator Pro

    Hi,

    I have plans to buy my first 3d printer. The 3dworld is not completely new for me, I have the skills to model 3d models and animate them in C4D, Maya.
    But the part to bring the models and designs to real life is completely new for me. I Inform myself the last few weeks about 3d printing and read a lot reviews and info about 3d printers.
    There are 3 printers that are on my list, The Ultimaker 2, Ultimaker Original Plus, And the Flashforge Creator Pro.
    Maybe the Ultimaker 2 Go but I don’t like the small build volume but it’s accuracy is supurb.

    I’m going to use the printer to print out my custom designs, products and figurines. The figurines will be printed in high resolution. So the printer has to be accurate, no big ripples.
    In the time that I don’t use the printer I will use it as a hub to print out orders for other people.

    The Budget: € 1000 – € 2000 but if I can save around € 1000 than I have a bigger smile so I can buy some extra filament and other toy’s for the 3D printer.
    The Ultimaker 2 is around € 2500 but I find some second hand UM2 on the internet for under the € 2000

    Fillament: I going only print out some PLA or Colorfab XT filament and some experimental filament like wood, copper etc but no ABS because of the toxic fumes.

    There are some questions that I have to make my decision between the Ultimaker or Flashforge Creator Pro:

    1 - I live in the Netherlands so for the support the Ultimaker would be the perfect printer. But I don’t know about the Flashforge Creator Pro.
    There are some store’s here that sell the printer but what about the maintenance and the spare parts here in Europe.
    Is it easy to get spare parts for the Flashforge without spending 50+ dollars on delivery costs, from China or the US.

    2 - The thing that I don’t like by 3d prints is that you can see the ripple layers, especially if I want something smooth like faces or spheres.
    So what about the resolution. I read that the sweet spot for a good high resolution prints on the Ultimaker is around 0.06 mm for almost a smooth surface.
    The Flashforge has a maximum of 0.1 mm. Is the difference noticeable between 0.06 mm and 0.1 mm?
    Can some people show me some pictures of high resolution prints that are print out on those printers?

    3 - Is there a difference in quality of the prints by the Ultimaker Original Plus and Ultimaker 2 and how easy is it to achieve 0,06 mm prints on an Ultimaker Original Plus
    without tweaking a lot in the hardware site like tightening the belts and calibrating the X&Y axis. etc?


    Thanks,

    Mark

  2. #2
    Engineer-in-Training ServiceXp's Avatar
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    I own a 2015 FFCP and have been very happy with the printer and the support (Tang for Amazon), but considering your location I would go with Ultimaker, but I would try and get the latest (might as well spend a little extra to have the latest). While ABS emissions are probably the largest, some of the exotic filaments may have some harmful emissions also. http://pubs.acs.org/doi/full/10.1021/acs.est.5b04983

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by ServiceXp View Post
    I own a 2015 FFCP and have been very happy with the printer and the support (Tang for Amazon), but considering your location I would go with Ultimaker, but I would try and get the latest (might as well spend a little extra to have the latest). While ABS emissions are probably the largest, some of the exotic filaments may have some harmful emissions also. http://pubs.acs.org/doi/full/10.1021/acs.est.5b04983
    I read the reviews on Amazon Tang does anamazing job for the people that bought a FFCP from Amazon. I don't know if I can count on his help, if I buy the printer from a Dutch shop.
    What my thoughts about the Ultimaker. Someone told me that there is not much differencein quality of the print between the Ultimaker 2 and Ultimaker Original Plus. TheUltimaker 2 looks nicer but that is not important for me at the moment. If I choose the Ultimaker than I go for theUltimaker Original+

    I've still to decide between the Ultimaker Original + and the FFCP. The price difference between those two printers is around €300,- I like the price (€1900) and thedual extrusion of the FFCP. But my decision depends on how good the support is for the printer is in Europe. Does it use the same parts as the Makerbot
    Replicator or Wanhao Duplicator 4?

  4. #4
    Flashforge:

    PROS: excellent print quality, infinitely customizable, proven track record, dual extrusion. Standard filament size (1.75mm), direct drive.

    CONS: Noisy

    Ultimaker:

    PROS: proven track record, excellent print quality, larger build volume.

    CONS: Non-standard filament size, Bowden drive, price.

    ... honestly you can't go wrong with either...


  5. #5
    Engineer-in-Training ServiceXp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by markdirk View Post
    I read the reviews on Amazon Tang does anamazing job for the people that bought a FFCP from Amazon. I don't know if I can count on his help, if I buy the printer from a Dutch shop.
    What my thoughts about the Ultimaker. Someone told me that there is not much differencein quality of the print between the Ultimaker 2 and Ultimaker Original Plus. TheUltimaker 2 looks nicer but that is not important for me at the moment. If I choose the Ultimaker than I go for theUltimaker Original+

    I've still to decide between the Ultimaker Original + and the FFCP. The price difference between those two printers is around €300,- I like the price (€1900) and thedual extrusion of the FFCP. But my decision depends on how good the support is for the printer is in Europe. Does it use the same parts as the Makerbot
    Replicator or Wanhao Duplicator 4?
    I find that hard to believe, and would indeed look at getting more advice on the differences between the two.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator curious aardvark's Avatar
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    personally I would say if you can afford an ultimaker - get an ultimaker.

    It's not really a non-standard filament size as it's the larger of the two standard sizes. I've not seen any filament that doesn't come in both sizes so that's not an issue.
    It says 2.85mm but 3mm should work just as long as you tell the slicing software. And pretty much all filament comes in either 2.85 or 3mm.

    The flash forge pro is a good machine.
    But:
    Ultimaker has larger print volume.
    Ultimaker has much higher placement precision.
    Ultimaker is much faster.
    Ultimaker uses standard gcode - so you can use pretty much any slicer you like - flashforge uses x3g files, which can cause issues with some slicers.

    Basically there is a reason ultimakers keep consistently winning awards.

    If dual printheads are important to you - you can upgrade the ultimaker to a dual extruder quite easily - the place for the second extruder is already on the carriage.

    The only reason for getting a fully enclosed machine like the ffcp is to print abs. And you don't need to ever use abs if you don't want to. lots of alternatives.


    get the ultimaker :-)

  7. #7
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    FDM printers aren't ideal for figurines as you intend, for optimal resolution and detail an SLA printer would be a better choice.

    But you can get some decent results out of good FDM printers like the ultimaker and FFCP. Make sure your expectations are realistic. I've gotten good results with my FCCP when printing figures that are at least 5 inches tall in ABS with acetone smoothing. If you print figures too small, the acetone smoothing process will be too destructive, and without smoothing they will look kinda rough.

    When deciding between the ultimaker and FFCP the main difference is speed. High quality prints will print about twice as fast on the ultimaker, which is a big deal when you're printing artistic pieces with high resolution.

    I love my flashforge, but if I had to purchase over again I'd get the Ultimaker--twice the speed and slightly more reliable quality is worth the extra $$.

  8. #8
    Technologist Bobby Lin's Avatar
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    In my own opinion, I think you're better off with choosing Ultimaker, especially that their support is near your country/region. Both printers are great, but in your case I think Ultimaker suits your need more.

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