If you’re looking for the best 3D printer for robotics then you’ll need to get a 3D printer that offers more advanced features than most standard consumer models.
In order to print the parts needed to make a robot you’ll need a high precision 3D printer with a large build volume.
It’s also a good idea to look into getting a 3D printer with a laser engraver or CNC functionality if you plan on doing any custom fabrication.
In the following article, you’ll find the best 3D printers for robotics that will meet the needs of both expert and hobbyist roboticists.
Best 3D Printer for Robotics
The Creality 3D Printer CR-10S (Buy Online) is one of the best printers if you need to print large parts for your 3D printed robot. This printer has a maximum print resolution of 0.1mm and it has a massive build volume that measures 300 mm x 300 mm x 400 mm.
The Creality CR-10S has an upgraded Z axis that now has two leading screws for a more stable and precise print. It also comes with a filament detector that will turn off the printer when it senses that the filament is no longer entering the extruder.
This printer has a large heated bed that can heat up to 90-100C max. It also has an automated head positioning mode that will make it easier to level the bed after you assemble the printer.
The CR-10S supports a wide range of software like Solidworks, 3D Studio Max, Rhino, Inventor, and many more 3D modeling programs. The printing software is a standard Cura./Repetier-Host, and it supports most 3D file types like STL, OBJ, and G-Code.
Overall the Creality CR-10S is perfect if you need to make large 3D printed robot parts like those found in the open source 3D printer plans for the BNC3D robot arm. It’s also a very accurate printer and it does an excellent job on small prints as well.
Build Volume: 300 x 300 x 400 mm (11.8 x 11.8 x 15.8 inches)
Print Resolution: +/- 0.1 mm
Printing Speed: < 200 mm/s
Supported Materials: PLA, ABS, TPU
Control Panel: LCD Screen
Input: SD Card/USB
Tremendous build volume
Perfect for the BNC3D 3D printed robot arm
Firmware might need to be upgraded
Very large prints can take a long time
The QIDI TECH X-MAX Industrial Grade 3D Printer (Buy Online) is perfect for someone who wants a professional printer at an affordable price point. This enclosed 3D printer has a print resolution 50 microns, and it has a build volume that measures 300 mm x 250 mm x 300 mm.
The QIDI TECH X-MAX 3D Printer has been improved to use a double Z-axis instead of the single Z-axis found in previous models. This makes it more stable and better at producing large high quality prints on a regular basis. The aluminum frame and overall solid construction of the printer also keeps the body from flexing when the print head is moving.
This printer has a removable heated bed that can reach temperatures as high as 212-degrees Fahrenheit. The removable bed is a nice feature since it makes it easier to detach large prints outside of the machine if they get stuck for any reason.
The QIDI TECH X-MAX is compatible with QIDI print software that seems to be a reskinned version of CURA. You can also use CURA with this printer but the QIDI print software is a little easier to use and it has a much simpler user interface.
If you’re looking for a 3D printer that’s ready to go right out of the box then the QIDI TECH X-MAX is your best option. That means you won’t have to struggle putting together a kit with lots of little pieces, and QIDI TECH offers excellent technical support and everyone of their printers comes with a full 1-Year Warranty.
Build Volume: 300 x 250 x 300 mm (11.8 x 9.8 x 11.8 inches)
Resolution: 50 micron
Supported Materials: PLA, ABS, TPU, PETG
Control Panel: Full Color LCD Screen
Connectivity: USB, Ethernet, WiFi
Heated Bed (Removable)
Large enclosed build volume
The chamber holds in heat for better ABS print quality
Best customer support in the business
Doesn’t have an auto leveling feature
The door and hood are not removable
The Snapmaker 3-in-1 3D Printer (Buy Online) is one of the most versatile 3D printers on the market. This 3D printer/Laser Engraver/CNC Machine has a print resolution of 50 to 300 microns, and it has a build volume that measures 125 mm x 125 mm x 125 mm.
The Snapmaker 3-in-1 3D Printer is solidly built with an all aluminum frame and a unique design that makes it very stable. The printer comes as a kit, but it only takes about 30 minutes to put together,
There are 3 print heads included in the box, and each one can be switched in and out quickly. You get a standard 3D printer filament extruder along with a laser engraver and a CNC carver. The laser engraver uses a 200mW laser that works on wood, leather, plastic, and fabric. While the CNC carver head spins at 19,000 RPM and it can handle materials like wood, acrylic, PCB, and carbon fiber.
This printer has a heated bed that’s rated to reach 80-degrees C, but in testing it has been observed to reach 100-degrees C. The heated bed also moves on it’s own axis, which helps keep the print head stable since it limits the distance it has to travel.
The Snapmaker 3-in-1 3D Printer is designed to work with Snapmaker3D software that’s very easy to use and beginner friendly. You can also use Cura, Simplify 3D, and Slic3r if you’re more experience and want to use standard 3D software
All in all, the Snapmaker 3-in-1 3D Printer is a great choice for someone who wants a low cost full featured 3D printer. The laser engraver and CNC mill will let you create custom robots you couldn’t make with any other machine, and it’s compact design won’t take up a lot of room in your workshop.
Build Volume: 125 x 125 x 125 mm (4.9 x 4.9 x 4.9 inches)
Resolution: 50-300 micron
Supported Materials: PLA, ABS, TPU
Control Panel: 3.5”Color LCD Screen
Heated Bed (80 C)
The laser can engrave a wide range of materials
The print heads are easy to switch out when you want to change them
The CNC carver will let you make your own custom PCB’s
Very solid construction
Distinct motor noise
Small build volume
The BIBO 3D Printer Touch Laser (Buy Online) is simple to use and it’s packed full of features. This fully enclosed 3D printer has a print resolution of 50-300 microns, and the print volume measures 214 mm x 186 mm x 160 mm.
The BIBO 3D Printer has a rugged all metal frame that’s made of 6mm aluminum. It also has a fully enclosed build area with a removable acrylic door and front hood to ensure proper temperature control inside the printer. You can either keep the door and hood closed when you need to print using a high temperature material like ABS, or you can remove them if you’re using a PLA filament.
This printer has a heated glass bed that can be removed from the printer to make extracting a print much easier. The bed also comes fully leveled, so you won’t have to spend a lot of time calibrating it once you set up the printer.
The thing that really sets this printer apart is the dual extruders. The dual extruders allow for two color prints, and you can even print with two different types of material. This will let you create more complex robots without having to switch out the filament. You can even use the copy mode to print two identical parts in the same amount of time it would take to print one model.
The BIBO 3D Printer also has a laser engraver module that will let you burn designs into the surface of plastic, leather, or paper. The laser engraver can even cut thin materials so you can remove supports, or you can add even more detail to your 3D printed robots.
The BIBO 3D Printer is compatible with Cura, Repetier-Host, and Simplify3D, and it can be controlled via USB, SD Card, and WiFi. It also has a large full color display on the unit that’s simple to use an gives you access to all of the printers functions.
If you’ve been looking for an affordable fully enclosed dual extruder printer then the BIBO 3D Printer is one of your best options.
Build Volume: 214 x 186 x 160 mm (8.4 x 7.3 x 6.3 inches)
Resolution: 50 to 300 micron
Supported Materials: PLA, ABS, TPU, HIPS
Control Panel: Full Color LCD Screen
Connectivity: USB, SD Card, WiFi
Removable Heated Bed
The dual extruders allow you to print in two colors
The laser engraver works on large objects
Great customer service
Easy to assemble
The heated bed is thin
Attaching the laser head can be a challenge