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Max Nui

Best 3D printer for Bionicle masks.

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I am in the market for purchasing a new 3d printer, as my last one has burnt out on me (a Monoprice MP Mini Delta). I was wondering what other people in the community used for their prints, and what levels of success and failures you've had. In my head, the ideal requirements for a good Bionicle printer should produce high quality prints, but doesn't need to have a large print bed. What printer would you recommend (or not recommend :D )?

Also, I hope this is the correct place to post this.

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So I just started going down this myself, so most of this is still early discoveries on my end. I'm mainly prototyping on an Ender 3 with a .4 mm nozzle. This is great just to get a quick idea of how the part looks and works size-wise after a fast print, but certainly doesn't have the "LEGO fit". If I'm happy, I swap to a .24 mm nozzle. Then give it a longer print with solid infill. A light sand has it looking nice then. I'm just starting with resin printing, but it does a better job catching the slick look of real bricks. Sadly, I'm still getting the hand of that so I can't say much about it at the moment.


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Scrap that idea. I'm leaving mine blank.

 

Except for this: My BZPRPG characters

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I second Synan’s thoughts: an Ender 3 (or Ender 3 pro) is absolutely a fantastic printer. As far as printers go, it’s affordable at under $300. Theres a huge community behind it, and they will help you with troubleshooting, improving prints, etc. Plus, it’s a very customizable machine with a lot of other parts you can buy or print for it. Material wise, you want PLA filament for this as it’s easy to print with. Materials like ABS require temperature enclosures and other setting that a base Ender 3 can’t support. 
 

As with any FDM printer, realize that prints are built in layers. You will spend countless hours tweaking your prints and machine, but likely you will still have a “texture” to your finished part because of this.  Bionicle masks aren’t too difficult to print and often the supporting structures(which can create ugly surface textures) are hidden on the inside of the mask. 
 

I HIGHLY recommend getting yourself XTC-3D, it’s a two-part resin that you can apply to finished printed parts. It glosses the part and fills in the layer lines to smooth out the part. 
 

I haven’t dabbled in Resin printers yet, but I suspect they will produce a better looking part from the onset, but are more complicated to use. 

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I use a resin printer to print my masks. I bought the Elegoo Mars Pro last year and have been using it non stop to make masks, weapons and other parts. The parts are highly detailed and quite sturdy as well. 

As said above the printers are harder to use than FDM printers. Though, I think it's worth it since the results of a resin printer are so much better. There are many videos online on how to use resin printers efficiently. After a few attempts I found the right settings and now I only have to insert a usb and start printing. The cleanup requires a bit more time as you need to clean the print thoroughly with alcohol and expose it to UV light to cure it completely. I ended up buying a curing station to make that process easier as well. Now all I need to do is print the part, put it in the curing station to clean, then swich to UV mode and cure it completely, remove the supports and done. 

I've included a couple pictures of masks I've printed so you can see the details up close. 

20210612_160153.jpg

mask.png

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