Below are some questions that may help you with the 3D print and design services we provide. If you have questions that are not listed below, feel free to click on our "Other Questions" link, fill out the contact form with any questions you may have and we will answer them as soon as we can.
Are my files treated confidentially?
Yes. Knowing that you probably spent several hours or days on your design, we treat it with confidentiality. We don't publish renders or photos of your design, nor make the design available for everyone, without your permission. The uploaded models cannot be downloaded by anyone but us.
What models are prohibited to be printed?
Unfortunately, due to Uncle Sam, we cannot legally print working firearms and sell them. We can however print all sorts of parts for your firearm as long as that part doesn't have a serial number that needs to be registered with the ATF (ex: AR lowers, Lower polymers for pistols, etc.). Other than that, we will print anything within reason. Just use common sense before you ask us to print something ridiculous.
Which is the best 3D modeling software to use?
There is no 'best' 3D modeling software. The choice of 3D modeling software however is rather large. We think it might be good to see for which purpose you'll be mostly using the software: architecture, sculpting, animation, engineering, product design, jewelry design, etc. And you might want to take a look at how much money you plan to spend on 3D modeling software, which ranges from free to a few thousand dollars.
I have no 3D design experience, how can I design my own model?
You can learn how to 3D model by learning how to use 3D modeling tools such as Rhino, Blender or Solid Works. It will take you a few weeks to become familiar with these software packages and half a year or more to become an accomplished user. Remember, We offer Design services as well, so if you prefer not to spend weeks or months learning to do it yourself, we will be happy to assist you. Just contact us for a free consultation.
What is minimal wall thickness and level of detail?
In 3D printing, wall thickness refers to the distance between one surface of your model and the opposite sheer surface. It's defined as the minimum thickness your model should have at any time.
Level of detail can be described as the difference height between 2 surfaces (cf. extruded text on a surface).
Minimal wall thickness and level of detail both depend on the process being used.
How big can I make my model?
How big you can make your model differs for the various 3D printing processes we use. As of now, our max print size is 8in x 8in (XY) and 9in (Z). We can however slice your file into parts that fit on out build plate. We will either glue the pieces together once printed, or use a special chemical blend depending on what material you choose to have your project printed with.
What if my 3D model contains 'errors'? Will you fix it?
If you upload your model in our 3D print lab and it contains errors, our software will try to fix it on the spot. However, in case it cannot be fixed automatically, we will contact you regarding the details of any errors in your file. You may either choose to fix the errors yourself or leave it up to us. We do have a service charge for errors. See our Engineering Page for details.
What colors can I get for a model?
Colors may vary depending on our stock. Depending on what type of material you choose to print with, several colors are available. We will discuss the color options during our consultation.
Can I paint the models myself?
Yes, you can. We also offer hydrographing services for your 3D printed object. Standard model-making paints work well with polyamide and on the stereolithography (paint-able resin, transparent resin and prime gray) and PolyJet (high detail resin) materials. Both acrylic and water based paints work as well, but several layers may be needed. This is especially the case for polyamide since its porous structure is still visible after one coat of paint. Please, do not use any harsh paints since some chemicals may degrade your models or react with the 3D printing materials. Use caution and lots of ventilation when painting.
What material should I choose?
There is no 'perfect' 3D printing material or process. There is no 'perfect' 3D printing material or process. There are a lot of criteria to determine the best suited material for your design. Most common are size, level of detail, which kind of material, use, color and finish. During our consultation, we will recommend which material will best suit your project.
What file formats are supported?
We support .stl, .3ds, .igs, .obj, .model, .mxp, .wrl, .3dm, .dae, .fbx, and .matpart files in our 3D print lab. For these file formats, we can provide you with an online price.
For .magics, .matAMX, .amf, .mgx, .ndo, .asc, .cli, .slc, .mtt, .mdck, .cls, .ssl, .sli, .jt, .prj, .sat, .CATPart, .CATProduct, .dxf, .ply, .zcp, .prt, and .asm files, you can request an offline price. To request an off line price, you can send these files as a .zip or a .rar file through the 3D print lab. One of our support engineers will contact you shortly after.
Alternately, you can email your files to us through your own mail client by clicking here. If we have any problems opening your files, we'll contact you.
How do I get a price for my design?
Once we receive your file, we will let our software determine how long it will take with "base" settings. Once we determine the time it will take, we will just multiply it by our hourly rate ($13/hour). We can also adjust the settings of the print to either give your project more or less detail (more detail=more time= higher print price)..
Can I group my models into one file?
No. Although there is nothing wrong with having more than one model in a file while designing, the difficulty starts, for both you and us when you want to 3D print the models. It takes more time to un-group the models and you may be charged for the time spent on un-grouping them.
Our online prices are only valid for single model files. The reason is that in addition to the printing cost, each model has its own handling cost, and this cost depends on the model as well as the material you choose. Some people see this as a chance to cheat the system since the handling cost will only be charged once and will include all the models in the 3D file. However, although it may seem like a good way to save a little money, there are some risks involved.
Where can I track the progress of my order?
During the 3D print or design process, feel free to email or call us to check on the progress for your order. We are not a large corporate company, so when you call, you will speak to us directly.
Can I get a bulk discount for large orders?
Yes, for most orders in our 3D print lab, the unit price varies, depending on the quantity of copies. But we are also capable of handling really large orders and huge volumes, for which we can give you an off-line price. Or just contact us and we'll get right on it!
What happens if I order something that can't be printed?
Before sending the models to the printers they are checked for print-ability. If we encounter problems, we will contact you and, if possible, suggest solutions to make them printable.
What payment options are available?
It is possible to pay with all major credit cards or PayPal. During your consultation, you will have the option to pay by credit card or through PayPal. Choose PayPal if you have a PayPal account or an American Express card.
How long does it take to print a model?
The standard delivery time (time between placement and shipment of your order) is 3-5 business days (except for priority orders), and depends on the complexity, material, and finishing of your order. Most finished 3D prints are shipped the day after completion.
How accurate can you print my model?
Dimensional accuracy varies for each material. During your consultation, we will suggest the best material for your project. Our printers have a line height as fine as 20 microns. This means that each layer of your model is printed at .02mm
What is the surface quality of a finished model?
The surface quality of your 3D printed model is defined by the material and the technology. Each material has a different natural surface quality. This is also true for the different finishing options. We have found that even with a low quality print, you can always sand it smooth.
Can I ship to a different address than my own?
Yes, you can ship your solidprint3d order to an address different from your billing address. Just let us know prior to shipping and the shipping costs will be calculated based on this information.
How long does it take to ship my model(s)?
The transit time for the shipment depends on your location. It typically takes 3-5 business days.
How much are the shipping costs?
We try to use flat rate shipping on larger orders, however, we also find out the cheapest way to save you money.