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3D Printing Prices - Where Will They Go? [message #61468] Wed, 06 February 2013 16:48 UTC Go to next message
avatar PeregrineStudios  is currently offline PeregrineStudios
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Hey all,

I recently started uploading some models to i.materialise (nothing personal, Shapeways - just trying to reach a larger market!) but was shocked at their prices. They're almost double the cost here on Shapeways! Granted, they have a wider variety of materials, but for that much? I'll stick around here, thanks.

I asked about it on their forums. "Why is i.materialise so much more expensive?" I inquired. Here's the response I got back:

Quote:

Hi Christian,

Glad you like that many aspects from i.materialise. You will probably like our prices as well if you try out a number of materials we offer, or upload designs which are a bit larger than the tiny parts you get at favorable prices elsewhere. The prices we offer reflect the actual costs of 3D printing. Printing small parts at $1.00 or huge wireframes at $25.00 is absolutely not realistic and cuts deep in the viability of a company. The last couple of days we have also seen proof of that in communications about and around some other printing services. We try to set fair prices. That's the only way to guarantee you a good service and a nice product offering in the future as well.


After wading through the P.R., I think he's saying that those are the lowest prices they can realistically set - and, rather ominously, implies that other places are realizing this too. I'd always assumed that the price of 3D printing, new as it is, has only one place to go: down. But this has me wondering - will we be seeing prices increase at any point? And if not, I'm still curious, will they ever be going down?

Thanks!
Re: 3D Printing Prices - Where Will They Go? [message #61471 is a reply to message #61468 ] Wed, 06 February 2013 17:40 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar stonysmith  is currently offline stonysmith
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You're lucky at only 2x the cost. Every other place I've asked for quotes of my modes has come back at TEN times the cost!

Quote:

will we be seeing prices increase at any point? ... will they ever be going down?


You've asked a tricky question: You have to balance the "worth" of an item versus it's (total) cost, plus consider that over time, "everything gets cheaper".
a) If you needed one and could print a new kidney, would that be worth more than $0.01 per cm3 to you?
b) You can go to Hallmark and buy a greeting card that plays music for $5. The processor inside that card has more processing power than the computer that took us to the MOON.

Consider this model: http://shpws.me/lONM
Is it "worth" $25? That's a subjective decision. I could go pickup a raw gypsum rock for free, so $25 is "expensive". But, it'd cost me hundreds of hours of labor to turn it into what comes out of the Shapeways printer, so it's "cheap". That model if mass-produced would probably cost $2, but no one IS mass-producing them, and they're not available elsewhere. The items that are available in this specific size are poorer quality and more expensive. So, from an overall "worth" proposition, the items I can produce here at Shapeways have value to me.

I am not privy to Shapeways internal pricing decisions. My sense is that over time (3-4 years), as their total volume goes up, they MAY be able to reduce the price of items.


Patience, Persistance, Politeness - the 3Ps will help us get us to Perfect Printed Products
Re: 3D Printing Prices - Where Will They Go? [message #61472 is a reply to message #61468 ] Wed, 06 February 2013 17:42 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar mkroeker  is currently offline mkroeker
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Different businesses targeting different parts of the perceived market. Did you expect the representative from
i.materialize to say that their price policy and business model is all wrong, or do you expect someone from shapeways
to do so ? There are lots of smaller companies around that offer "rapid prototyping" at even more "outrageous" prices,
and a few years back, those were the only players in the field.
Re: 3D Printing Prices - Where Will They Go? [message #61475 is a reply to message #61472 ] Wed, 06 February 2013 18:13 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar victorrings  is currently offline victorrings
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i too have priced these guys... mainly because i have a customer that was interested in solid gold or titanium.

honestly, i haven't been able to get a straight answer out of them. it seems that for all material there is no set price point or volume set point. this makes it harder to compare apples to apples.

this sours me on their whole business structure, which is sad because i want to give my customer the widest variety of materials they could ever want. in the end of this particular customer, he decided that silver would be the best option.

chris


my website is online at
http://victorrings.weebly.com/
RINGS GALORE!
Re: 3D Printing Prices - Where Will They Go? [message #61478 is a reply to message #61475 ] Wed, 06 February 2013 18:51 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar BillBedford  is currently offline BillBedford
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If you were to a little more research you would find that bigger pieces i.materialize has better prices than Shapeways.


Bill Bedford
Re: 3D Printing Prices - Where Will They Go? [message #61479 is a reply to message #61478 ] Wed, 06 February 2013 18:54 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar PeregrineStudios  is currently offline PeregrineStudios
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See, that's the thing. That's what the i.materialise fellow said as well, but I uploaded a larger model and it was still ~x2 the price. I don't know how big a model they're talking, but it must be pretty huge to get those 'good prices'.
Re: 3D Printing Prices - Where Will They Go? [message #61486 is a reply to message #61479 ] Wed, 06 February 2013 19:48 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar BillBedford  is currently offline BillBedford
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> $500

[Updated on: Wed, 06 February 2013 19:48 UTC]


Bill Bedford
Re: 3D Printing Prices - Where Will They Go? [message #61492 is a reply to message #61486 ] Wed, 06 February 2013 21:05 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar wiwa  is currently offline wiwa
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It is a well known fact that Shapeways offers the rock-bottom prices for all their materials. You can't find cheaper Sandstone, Nylon, Acrylic, Stainless or Silver parts from any other bureau. I think this is largely to do with the large community and resulting large throughput of parts (high volume = lower prices). SW is the Amazon or Walmart of 3D printing. other bureaus may rather get 10 orders of $500 parts than 2500 orders of $2 parts, both of which Shapeways will gladly accept indiscriminately - and that's reflected in their respective pricing structures.


wiwa
Re: 3D Printing Prices - Where Will They Go? [message #61493 is a reply to message #61468 ] Wed, 06 February 2013 21:16 UTC Go to previous message
avatar natalia  is currently offline natalia
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As WIlliam (above) points out, we have some of the cheapest prices because we want to make 3D printing accessible to anyone.


Shapeways Community Manager

 
   
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