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Puresteel

Ultimaker Original or Flashforge Creator Pro (Got a Rostock Max v2)

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This is my very first post!  

   I have saved up around $1000 US and I am looking to buy the best printer for the money.  I previously owned a Printrbot Metal a couple years ago and I'm fairly handy.   My youngest son is on the way to engineering school sometime in the not too distant future (He wants to work for Boeing).

So with some simple back-round out of the way, my question is this.  How useful are the Dual Extruder and enclosed cabinet on the Flashforge model and should it keep me away from buying the Ultimaker?  I google searched for a bit trying to find some good answers and the only relevant thread made the Flashforge seem pretty great (decent looking prints, and there is a guy on youtube making sweet cosplay alien costumes with ninjaflex and abs to give it strength).  I don't want to make costumes or anything but it was cool.

Really its the dual extruder though, that is giving me pause.

I got all excited when I saw they lowered the price on the Original+ and I am ready to pull the trigger.  I just have this niggling in the back of my head that I might wish to have the ability to print ninjaflex and ABS at the same time or put in water soluble supports or something at some point.  I read somewhere that Ultimaker might never add the ability to have another extruder because of weight or print qualities ect.

So I got an email after I signed up for the forums here encouraging me to make a post, and that inspired me to come here and ramble =)  Thanks for reading all this and maybe giving me some of your insights!

Jeremy

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Jeremy, welcome!

I only know the flashforge from the info on there website, never used one, but lets have a look anyhow...

The machine being enclosed is good for printing ABS, this is not a big deal in the comparison as the Ultimaker is easy to enclose with some plexiglas, due to it's square design.

The direct extruder head on the flashforge is heavy, so the Ultimaker will archieve higher quality at comparable speeds. The direct extruder can be better for ninjaflex.

looking at the ff dual extruder, correct me if i'm wrong but it looks like a head with 2 fixed nozzles, so no lifting system, that makes me doubt the quality and usefullness. It's easy to also setup dual extrusion like this on an UMO, but it does not work.... IMHO for dual extrusion you need to get the unused nozzle out of the way, so eather by lifting it (like the Felix printer) or use two separate heads (like the BCN3D Sigma), these machines are double the price you're looking at.

It's also good to take service into acount, I have no idea about the size of the install base of the flashforge, but with an Ultimaker there will always be someone to help you in case you have an issue, all hardware and software is open, all plans are available.

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.. And the Ultimaker officials are roaming the forums too! ;)

Hi @PureSteel, welcome to the forums!

What kind of materials are you planning on using most?

Or do you just prefer to keep options open and see wherever the 3D printing path leads you?

If you are feeling adventurous this is also still an option :)

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I believe I would most probably be using mostly ABS or at least I did when I had my old printer, but my son might like PLA more.  As for how I plan on using it the sky is the limit really.  My son likes to whip up things in blender and prototype and I do all kinds of crazy things, I make furniture, play tabletop wargames, garden, model and paint.

Hey that video (at the bottom) is pretty cool, who is the girl singing in it?  I'm unfamiliar with that music

So there are people working on dual extruding alternatives even if its not something being officially done at the moment.  Excellent!

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Exactly, one of the fruits of being open source :)

A couple of users have collaborated on this approach, even @UltiArjan himself. But I would recommend to first get familiar with the machine, understand how everything works etc, before you start such an intensive mod.

And like UltiArjan says, if it is a fixed duplicate of the hot end I would have doubts at the usefulness / pleasant experience you would have as a user.

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I have owned 2 UMOs for over three years - bought the + upgrade for one and have not even put it in yet ....... as PLA works really happily without a heated bed. I use other materials and so will use the heated bed at some point.

I design and build prototypes all the time and have used nylons and other 'exotics' and I think only twice have I 'wanted' dual extrusion - I think I would try it if I had it, but do not really miss not having it.

Once when I wanted to have 2 colours (a spiderman themed e-nable hand) I printed the hand with the spider cut-out, printed the spider for an interference fit and pushed it in - that is how accurate a UMO is! (the legs were a few mm across and curved).

I do print ninjaflex - it is not superb at printing the after materials, but can be done and I make usable parts slowly - and more lately with filaflex.

James Bruton used to do lots with abs/ninjaflex but in all his latest builds seems to have done less of that mix.

 

So I know the UMO is a fantastic machine.

I have heard good things about the flashforge too - so no bad thing there, but (yes it was around when I did my purchases) I still chose UMOs as a 'tinkerer's' machine.

HTH

James

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I've had a UMO for almost 3 years.

The kit is a fun build, I won't say the easiest thing I have built...but if you pace yourself and enjoy it...you will.

I haven't put aside enough money to purchase an Ultimaker 2+ yet (something always comes up!)...but I can tell you that there isn't much you can't do on the UMO that the Ultimaker 2 can.

You'll learn a lot (I have) and there's a lot of active users out here than can give good advice and support along the way.

I wouldn't tackle the complicated things you hope to do right off.  Start with putting it together, getting it tuned and calibrated, then learn how to get good, quality prints.  As you gain experience, you'll feel more confident about tweaking and trying new materials, etc.

p.s. I bought the dual head/extruder option when I bought my kit. I really didn't see many using that feature with great success...so it has been a nice source of spare parts over the years :)

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I have both (FFCP and UM2). I only print PLA, so my experience would be limited to that, and this is just one opinion, I'm sure some will strongly disagree :-).

- The UM print quality if absolutely much better than the FFCP, using same resoluton and spending a reasonable amount of time "tweaking" them (I'm not the kind that goes crazy spending days and days tweaking)

- On the FFCP, w/o a glassbed, object adhesion is a real nightmare but *once you've upgraded to glass bed* is prints with an incredible reliability - it just prints, period

- The UM2, for the first 6 month I got it, was a real joy. It printed with an incredible reliabilty with the high quality. Then, things started to derailed and more than one year later, they are still totally unpredictable. I've changed the teflon insulator, bowden tube (tried new material as well), tried different feeder, changed the nozzel, tried all sort of T°, printed all sort of improvment pieces to prevent the tube from moving while retracting filament, it just remains totally unpredictable and I'can't print above 0.1 mm. I mean by unpredicatble a lot of under-extrusion. Whatever I do, some prints go well (30-50%) and all the rest either fail or are unusable and I've never been able to find a pattern. I'm using UM material, I've not tried to go cheap

- I recommended a UM2 to a friend before I had this problem, he bought it and had the exact same experience: worked incredibly well for a few month and then became a nightmare

- I've ordered the UM2+ upgrade kit and see how it will work, I'd really like to have it back as it was at the beginning because it was so perfect ...

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Well after doing my research I decided to go with a SeeMeCNC Rostock MAX v2 kit . I probably should have gone with the Ultimaker (it would be easier to put together perhaps), but my son convinced me that we could do the Delta kit. It has a wow factor to it that we couldn't resist. I like how giant it is too, both the size (42" Tall) and the build plate (11" diameter). Everyone in both communities are super friendly and helpful.

I thank everyone for their input, advice and stories. Its showing up in 3 days and I expect I will be begging for mercy and still trying to build it in a week or two :) If anyone has any advice on building a Rostock please feel free to let me know.

Jeremy

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I got "her" put together a few days ago and got my first correct prints last night.  I named the printer "Big Bertha".  The Rostock max V2 is definitely the most complicated thing I have ever built.  I believe that the Ultimaker would have been much easier to build and calibrate.

That being said she (Big Bertha) is a monster and very impressive to watch.  Plus I feel a lot more confident in my building abilities now =)  I am printing out stuff to make improvements to the printer now (Fan shrouds and the like).  There were times in the last week or so that I questioned my decision, but I'm pleased now that I can actually print stuff.  Also the calibration of the machine was like 70% of the work.  The actual assembly wasn't too terrible as long as you are semi-confident in your soldering abilities (Utube helped a bunch).  I think that the Ultimaker probably would have been a much easier route to go for a first build now that its all said and done.  The Seemecnc guys were all very helpful and responsive, I feel like these two communities are among the best 3d printing forums on the web.

In closing I would probably make the same choice again, but I would have been printing a week sooner had I chose the Ultimaker instead with potentially less headaches.

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