Joined: Jul 07, 2012
|Posted: 2012-07-11 9:22 pm  Permalink|
I also use Shapeways! It's a great service! To be honest, I haven't used it much since I got my own 3D printer, but there are definate pluses to using Shapeways, not the least of which is not having to own your own printer. Shapeways can print objects in various plastics, some of which are quite detail oriented, but also in stainless steel, silver, gold, glass, and even ceramic.
The downside to printing in ceramic, however, is the cost. Ceramic cost is based on the amount of surface area... I believe it is .18 per square cm. This doesn't seem like a lot, but a normal sized 7-8 inch tiki mug will cost you $250-$300.00 to print. The glaze colours are also limited to their selection, and they will not sell you greeware or bisqueware.
Printing in metal is likewise expensive, however, metal pieces such as jewelry can be small enough to make it cost effective. Metal cost is based on volume of material. I have rings on Shapeways that cost under $15.