In short: for fast, low-cost, high quality 3D printing and fulfillment achieved through our global network of approved 3D print partners. For specifics, read on.
First, through model optimizations, volume pricing and automated 3D model repairs, we are able to offer 3D prints at prices very similar to what you’d pay for raw materials if you 3D printed on your own – especially when you factor in model touch-up time/cost.
Second, 3D printing is far more complex than 3D printer distributors will have you believe. Here are some additional factors to consider when choosing to print on your own, which are taken care of when printing through the Twindom Platform:
Capital cost: The only acceptable 3D printer on the market today, the Projet 660Pro, costs $72,000+ and requires a $8,000+ annual maintenance contract.
Uptime: 3D printers are prone to failure and rarely have >50% uptime especially when starting out (when you are new to performing routine maintenance). This means you will want at least 2 printers for redundancy, or risk not being able to print your orders (a $160,000 investment). Expect uptime to be around 55-65% of the time.
Poor Quality: 3D print quality is not guaranteed; it requires substantial knowledge regarding the maintenance of the 3D printers and post-production techniques to achieve top level 3D printing quality. This means you are often forced to either reprint multiple times and lose money on orders, or ship quality that your customers will not be happy with.
Surge Demand: 3D printers can only print so many figures in a single day. During periods of high volume, such as the holidays, your 3D printing queue can grow very long and push lead times back multiple weeks if not months.
Time Investment: 3D printing, post-processing and maintenance are a part-time job only if done properly; otherwise the time invested can easily inflate.
Hazardous Materials: The 3D printing process involves exposure to chemicals and materials that can be hazardous to your health and damage your surroundings. For example, the models are finished in cyanoacrylate (active component in superglue) for which you need proper ventilation, a chemical mask and full protective clothing to avoid skin contact until the model dries.
Shipping Infrastructure: Tracking and shipping orders involves another layer of infrastructure to ensure the right products are going to the right places.
Breakage: Breakage during post production and in shipping is a serious problem that we and our print partners manage for you. If you print on your own, you are responsible for all breakage.
3D Touch-ups: We automatically touch-up all 3D prints printed through the Twindom Platform. If you are printing on your own you will have to touch-up all of your own 3D scans, which can be time intensive and expensive if you do not know what you are doing.